Everything you need to know about Qatar’s Visa on Arrival scheme. Includes answers to frequently asked questions and regulations for 2018.

In August 2017, State of Qatar made a landmark announcement that it will allow visa-free entry for citizens of 80 countries (now 81 countries), with immediate effect.

As per the announcement, citizens of these 81 countries can get free Visa On Arrival to Qatar. The general conditions for getting Visa On Arrival are six months’ passport validity and a confirmed return or onward ticket.

qatar airways

The decision has received great appreciation from international community with thousands of visitors utilizing this facility each month. As per the Ministry of Interior statistics, during February 2018 alone  72,110 on-arrival visas  were issued by Qatar.

In this article we are trying to answer most of the frequently asked questions about this facility:

1. Which all nationalities can avail Visa On Arrival to Qatar?

The countries under this facility are divided into two categories as below:

Category 1: Visa for 180 days

  • Visa valid for 180 days from date of entry
  • Maximum stay: A total of 90 days either during a single trip or during multiple trips
  • The stay is not extendable
  • Multiple-entries are possible during this period

The following are the countries included under this category:

  1. Austria
  2. Bahamas
  3. Belgium
  4. Bulgaria
  5. Croatia
  6. Cyprus
  7. Czech Republic
  8. Denmark
  9. Estonia
  10. Finland
  11. France
  12. Germany
  13. Greece
  14. Hungary
  15. Iceland
  16. Italy
  17. Latvia
  18. Liechtenstein
  19. Lithuania
  20. Luxembourg
  21. Malaysia
  22. Malta
  23. Netherlands
  24. Norway
  25. Poland
  26. Portugal
  27. Romania
  28. Seychelles
  29. Slovakia
  30. Slovenia
  31. Spain
  32. Sweden
  33. Switzerland
  34. Turkey

Category 2: Visa for 30 days (+30 days extension)

  • Initial visa is for 30 days from date of entry
  • The stay can be extended for another 30 days free of cost
  • Multiple-entries are possible during this period

The following are the nations included under this:

  1. Andorra
  2. Argentina
  3. Australia
  4. Azerbaijan
  5. Belarus
  6. Bolivia
  7. Brazil
  8. Brunei
  9. Canada
  10. Chile
  11. China
  12. Colombia
  13. Costa Rica
  14. Cuba
  15. Ecuador
  16. Georgia
  17. Guyana
  18. Hong Kong
  19. India
  20. Indonesia
  21. Ireland
  22. Japan
  23. Kazakhstan
  24. Lebanon
  25. Maldives
  26. Mexico
  27. Moldova
  28. Monaco
  29. New Zealand
  30. Pakistan (Additional conditions apply, see Question 15)
  31. Panama
  32. Paraguay
  33. Peru
  34. Republic of Macedonia
  35. Russia
  36. San Marino
  37. Singapore
  38. South Africa
  39. South Korea
  40. Suriname
  41. Thailand
  42. Ukraine
  43. United Kingdom
  44. United States
  45. Uruguay
  46. Vatican City
  47. Venezuela

2. What are the requirements for obtaining Visa On Arrival?

The passenger’s passport must be valid for at least 6 months.

The passenger must have a confirmed return or onward ticket.

3. Is there any fee for the visa on arrival?

The visa is granted completely FREE of charge and there are no charge for extension / renewal.

4. Is hotel booking required?

The Ministry of Interior has clarified that hotel booking is not required for on arrival visas.

If there is no hotel booking, you should carry the address and mobile number of the friend / relative in Qatar who would host you. This should be provided if asked at the immigration.

TIP: It is better to carry the copies of Qatar ID and Passport of the host as you might be asked at the departure airport.

5. Should I use only Qatar Airways for my travel?

You can use any airline to Doha. There are no restrictions on mode of travel.

TIP: If you are traveling via another airline, make sure your airline knows about this Visa On Arrival facility. Some airline staff who are unaware about this facility may refuse to board you without a visa.

6. Should I show proof of funds / credit cards?

Proof of funds / credit card are not needed if you are being hosted by a friend / relative (For Pakistani nationals, refer to Question 15).

7. Should I show the salary certificate or tenancy contract of my host?

Host’s salary certificate or tenancy contract is not required for visa on arrival. There is no minimum salary requirement for any one to host a visitor.

8. Is there a special counter to go or forms to be filled at the airport?

There is no special counter to go or forms to be filled. Upon arrival, you can join the regular queue for immigration.

9. What is the procedure at the immigration counter?

The procedure is very simple:

  • While handing over the passport, tell the immigration officer that you want to get Visa On Arrival.
  • Show the return ticket if needed.
  • Give the host’s contact details (name, mobile number) if you are asked.
  • Look at the camera for iris scan (eye-scan) when asked. A green light would blink to confirm this.
  • The immigration officer would fix a small sticker to your passport. That’s it, welcome to Doha!

10. What is the procedure for renewal?

On the Ministry of Interior website, go to Visit Visa extension page (Visa Services — Visit Visa Extension).Link is here

  • Enter the visa number (available on the sticker in passport) or passport number
  • Select nationality from drop-down list
  • Enter verification code
  • Click on “Extend” button

The visa will be renewed for another 30 days

11. How many days after arrival can I renew the visa?

You can renew any day after arrival. Make sure you do it before the expiry to avoid complications.

12. Is medical check-up needed for renewing this visa?

Medical check-up is not needed for visa on arrival. It is needed for regular visit visa only.

13. I did not get any message or e-mail after renewal. How can I check the validity?

To check the validity, on the Ministry of Interior website, go to Visa Inquiry & Printing page (Visa Services — Visa Inquiry & Printing). Link is here.

  • Enter the visa number (available on the sticker in passport) or passport number
  • Select nationality from drop-down list
  • Enter verification code
  • Click on “Submit” button

The details including visa validity will be  shown

Click on print icon to save / print a copy for future reference

14. Do I need the renewal receipt while going back?

Receipt is not needed as the renewal date will be updated in the immigration system. However you may keep a copy for your peace of mind.

 Source: nricafe