Ramadan – how might it impact on your translation plans?
During Ramadan Muslims around the world will be observing fasting from dawn to sunset. Find out how this may impact any planned translations, and how you can make the most of opportunities that it presents. If you haven’t factored Ramadan into your plan don’t worry - your friendly translation and cultural experts at Acuity Translations are on hand to help.
When is Ramadan?
Ramadan is part of a lunar calendar and the exact dates are dependent on the appearance of the new month’s moon. Ramadan 2017, for example, was expected to begin on the evening of Friday, 26th May and to end on Saturday, 24th June.
What is Ramadan?
For the world’s estimated 2.2bn Muslims (that’s 1 in 4 people on Earth), the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, Ramadan, is a period of ‘sawm’ (fasting). Many people will take the time to focus even more on prayer and charitable acts while observing ‘sawm’ from dawn to sunset – provided they are healthy adults.
Before dawn, a meal called ‘suhoor’ is eaten. And under the setting sun, families and friends gather to break the fast together (with a meal known as ‘iftar’). It is common for some people to stay up into the early hours of the morning, although traditions during Ramadan can vary depending on culture.
A three-day celebration called ‘Eid-ul-Fitr’ traditionally takes place at the end of Ramadan.
How will Ramadan affect my translation projects?
Let’s face it – as us linguists know, if you haven’t enough ink in your quill, you simply can’t jot down everything that you want.
So, throughout Ramadan, it’s worth being mindful that fasting may impact on productivity and performance, and that certain countries may operate reduced working hours (such as UAE, Saudi Arabia and Algeria).
However, there is a flip side to this: with surges in café culture, retail spending and reported profits, it is also seen as an ideal time for big brands to create Ramadan-specific ads and campaigns.
Furthermore, in terms of reaching your audience during Ramadan, Google recently published data indicating that people across the MENA region spend more time online, using their smartphones and watching Youtube videos during Ramadan. One study also found that social media usage is highest during the wee small hours of 12am -3am!
So perhaps its more about how you ‘plan’ to your translations - it’s certainly worth asking us if you are unsure.
How Acuity Translations can help you during Ramadan and beyond
It is recommended that you start planning for Ramadan two months in advance in order to navigate potential scheduling and productivity pitfalls. However, there is still time for us to help – just get in touch with your friendly translation experts at Acuity Translations. It’s always worth asking us if you are unsure about something because we have linguistic experts all across MENA and beyond, ready with locally-relevant and culturally-informed practical advice.
Our complementary linguistic consultancy service means that our team of fully trained experts are on hand to offer you the help and advice you need – taking care of every last detail for you. After all, translation is far more than just changing words from one language to another. We can work with you to understand your project requirements and offer you a solution that ensures goals are reached within your specified time frames.
So, if you have any Arabic translations required throughout Ramadan, or indeed any other unrelated multi-lingual projects on the horizon that you think we may be able to assist you with, please just get in touch with us today – we will be delighted to hear from you!
- Market Research Handbook By ESOMAR (available on Google books)