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Eid-al-Fitr in Canada

Many Muslims in Canada celebrate Eid al-Fitr (also known as Id al-Fitr or Eid ul-Fitr) on the first day of Shawwal in the Islamic calendar. It marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan and the start of a feast that lasts up to three days in some countries.

Luxury chocolates presented as a gift.
Gifts are exchanged during Eid al-Fitr.
Gifts are exchanged during Eid al-Fitr.
©iStockphoto.com/Paul Cowan

What Do People Do?

Eid al-Fitr is an important Islamic holiday for the Muslim community in Canada. This event involves many Muslims waking up early and praying either at an outdoor prayer ground or a mosque. People dress in their finest clothes and adorn their homes with lights and other decorations.

Old wrongs are forgiven and money is given to the poor. Special foods are prepared and friends or relatives are invited to share the feast. Gifts and greeting cards are exchanged and children receive presents. Eid al-Fitr is a joyous occasion but its underlying purpose is to praise God and give thanks to him, according to Islamic belief.

Large crowds have gathered to celebrate Eid al-Fitr in cities such as Ottawa in the recent past. Political leaders in Canada have also made statements to wish their best to Islamic communities during the Eid al-Fitr celebrations. Children’s publications about holidays such as Eid al-Fitr have also written and made available in many parts of North America, including Canada.

Public Life

Eid al-Fitr is not a national public holiday in Canada. However, many Islamic businesses and organizations may alter their business hours during this event. There may be some congestion around mosques around this time of the year.

Background

Eid al-Fitr is also known as the Feast of Fast-Breaking or the Lesser Feast. It marks the end of Ramadan and the start of a feast that lasts up to three days in some countries, such as Jordan and the United Arab Emirates. It is one of Islam’s two major festivals, with Eid al-Adha being the other major festival. Eid al-Fitr celebrates the end of the fasting that occurs during Ramadan.

It is not possible to predict the date of Eid al-Fitr according to the Gregorian calendar accurately. This is because the month of Shawwal begins, and hence the month of Ramadan ends, after a confirmed sighting of the new moon. The new moon may be sighted earlier or later in specific locations. Hence, Muslims in different communities, for example on the east and west coasts of the USA and Canada, may begin the Eid-al-Fitr celebrations on different dates.

About Eid-al-Fitr in other countries

Read more about Eid-al-Fitr.

Eid-al-Fitr Observances

Note: Regional customs or moon sightings may cause a variation of the date for Islamic holidays, which begin at sundown the day before the date specified for the holiday. The Islamic calendar is lunar and the days begin at sunset, so there may be one-day error depending on when the New Moon is first seen.
WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday TypeWhere It is Observed
FriSep 102010Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
WedAug 312011Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
SunAug 192012Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
ThuAug 82013Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
TueJul 292014Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
SatJul 182015Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
ThuJul 72016Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
MonJun 262017Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
FriJun 152018Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
WedJun 52019Eid-al-FitrMuslim 
SunMay 242020Eid-al-FitrMuslim 

Quick Facts

Eid al-Fitr, which is on the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal, marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan.

Eid-al-Fitr 2016

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Eid-al-Fitr 2017

Monday, June 26, 2017

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Name in other languages

NameLanguage
Eid-al-FitrEnglish
Aïd el-FitrFrench
Eid-al-Fitr (Fest des Fastenbrechens)German
Note: Regional customs or moon sightings may cause a variation of the date for Islamic holidays, which begin at sundown the day before the date specified for the holiday. The Islamic calendar is lunar and the days begin at sunset, so there may be one-day error depending on when the New Moon is first seen.

List of dates for other years

Related holidays

Other holidays in July 2016 in Canada

Fun Holiday on July 7, 2016

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