Head coach, Mark Anscombe, insists he will have to continue with his squad rotation policy if Ulster are to maintain any silverware ambitions this season.
Anscombe has made a total of 11 changes for Saturday’s PRO12 showdown with Munster at Thomond Park.
It is the second of the festive Irish derbies following last week’s victory over Leinster.
Only Craig Gilroy, Luke Marshall, Neil McComb and Robbie Diack are retained from that win at Ravenhill.
Munster have made seven changes to the side which won 16-12 against Connacht in Galway – bringing in several frontliners.
It was always expected that changes would be made over the festive period, with both Ulster and Munster targeting home fixtures as they had done last year in the Interpro games.
Anscombe said: “When you play 30-plus games, player welfare is very important if you are going to survive and this is all part of that.
“In our case, for the guys who started the Autumn test series, some were allowed to play six out of eight games and others were allowed to play seven out of eight. All the teams will be thinking of using four of those up in the Heineken Cup and that only gives you two others to play.
“Not that we think one is more important than the other, but you also want to get some continuity going into the Heineken Cup and we have got the Scarlets next week.
“We are not undervaluing these local derbies, and with the team we are putting out we are going down there striving for a victory against Munster.
“We have to make sure we don’t put too much on the players and burn them out.
“The only one in the national camp that will play is Craig Gilroy. Jared Payne had a niggling groin injury that has been bothering him and he has virtually played every game. John Afoa has played every game and Nick Williams has been involved in every game except one.
“It is no good playing them in these games and then when you get to Glasgow and Castres (in Europe) we don’t do the business and fail to qualify with a handy lead in the group. People will be saying ‘why did you sacrifice them?’”