The Summer in Qatar (SiQ) programme 2019, now more than half-way since its launch on June 4, has attracted and engaged more people to experience and take part in various tourism offerings and activities taking place across the country, it is learnt.
“One of the main indications of (SiQ’s) success is the collaboration between different stakeholders starting from the preparation phase during Ramadan. We have more than 30 stakeholders all coming together to present the biggest SiQ (this year),” Khalid al-Jumaili from the Qatar National Tourism Council (QNTC) said.
The QNTC-organised programme, which concludes on August 16, partnered with public and private sectors, including the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Ministry of Municipality and Environment, Qatar Museums, Qatar Airways, Katara – the Cultural Village, Qatar Foundation, Private Engineering Office, Katara Hospitality, Al Rayyan Hospitality, Marriott International hotels, nine participating malls, and other event partners such as QSports, Social Studios, Alchemy and Radio One FM Qatar.
Al-Jumaili noted that the increase in the number of visits to various malls, the purchase and entries to the raffle draws, and the large number of visitors, especially families, at the Entertainment City, among others, indicate that the programme is on the right path to success.
About ticketed shows, he cited the success of the recently-held Doha Comedy Festival, featuring renowned South African comedian Trevor Noah, who entertained the crowd at the Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC).
Another comedy show is set to enthral the audience at QNCC on August 15, which will feature Omid Djalili and Nemr.
“Tickets have been sold out two weeks before the event,” said al-Jumaili, adding that there is also a huge demand for SiQ’s family shows such as The Smurfs, Hello Kitty Live, the Blue Man Group, and an Arabic concert during the upcoming Eid al-Adha holidays next month.
“All the activations have witnessed people going there and enjoying the activities, and one of the reasons is the engagement,” he stressed.
Apart from the activations in the mall, al-Jumaili said that many of QNTC’s partners such as Katara – the Cultural Village and Souq Waqif, among others, are also organising their own activities as part of SiQ.
“These add a big value comparing to the previous years where malls are the main focus of SiQ activities,” he pointed out.
Meanwhile, QNTC also enticed many foreign visitors, especially those who are eligible for visa-free entry, to visit Qatar during the summer, according to al-Jumaili.
He noted that the impact of such visa facilitation created a positive impact, with arrivals from these countries “growing by the numbers.”
About the Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) system, which is managed by the Ministry of Interior, al-Jumaili said: “We are working closely with them to get final reports on how effective it is and how much many people utilised it and how many people applied, how many people actually got the ETA and visited Qatar.”