Muscat: Have you planned your holidays for 2018?
If not, here are the tentative dates for all of Oman's upcoming public holidays.
According to the Islamic calendar, residents in Oman will have up to five long weekends in 2018. But it can change anytime as Islamic calendar depends on the sighting of the moon.
The first holiday of 2018, Isra'a Wal Miraj, is expected to be announced for the second week of April.
Subsequently, travel agents are anticipating Eid Al Fitr to fall on June 15 this year. "So we are expecting the holidays from June 15 to June 18," a travel agent of New Star Travel told the Times of Oman.
The second major holiday, Eid Al Adha, is expected to fall on August 22, with travel agents expecting residents to receive August 20-24 off.
In addition to the two Eids, people in Oman can also expect to receive time off for annual celebrations of Renaissance Day in July, the Islamic New Year in September, and the Prophet's (SAW) Birthday in November.
National Day holidays, meanwhile, are often announced for the last week of November, paired with a weekend which gives residents a longer weekend to enjoy with family.
Travel agents said residents are advised to make note of these dates and plan their holidays ahead of time to avoid disappointment or bloated travel bills.
"Every year long weekends come during these holidays. But as residents plan last minute, rates go higher and most places get booked," a travel agent of New Star Travel said.
Under the Labor Code, Chapter 2 Article 65, all employees are entitled to a paid day off for nationally recognised holidays. If, due to the nature of the position, the employee cannot take the day off, they must be paid their regular rate of pay plus 25 per cent, or given a different day off with pay.
The Labor Code states that any worker that is on vacation when a holiday occurs is not entitled to any special pay or guaranteed replacement days off for that holiday.
Cooler destinations such as Jabal Akhdar and Jabal Shams in Nizwa are often the first to be booked moments after holidays are announced.
As most of the holiday dates lie around the summer time, these places are expected to be the favourite getaway spot for residents if they are not travelling abroad.
"Everyone wants to know when the holiday falls. They want to be early to book hotels, rent a car or other such travel services. Some who are late by a week or so are often the ones who are unable to make it to their preferred destination," a resident added.