A valid visa is essential for you to reside, work, or holiday in Qatar. You can choose from different types of visas depending on the purpose of your stay.
To travel to Qatar, you will need a visa throughout the duration of your stay. There are different types of visas for Qatar and these apply according to the nature of the trip. Thus, you are advised to inquire about the related procedures with the Qatari embassy or consulate in your home country or directly from the Qatari government.
Different types of visas for Qatar
The Qatari government offers visas on arrival for citizens of 80 countries.
You are eligible for up to a total of 90 days either during a single trip or during multiple trips across a 180 day period if you hold a passport for one of the following countries:
Austria, Bahamas, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey.
Nationals of the following countries are eligible for a 30-day visa on arrival, which can also be extended for an additional 30 days.
Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Georgia, Guyana, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Maldives, Mexico, Moldova, Monaco, New Zealand, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Republic of Macedonia, Russia, San Marino, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Suriname, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Vatican City, Venezuela.
Nationals from Pakistan are also now eligible for Visa-free arrival if they meet certain conditions:
- The passenger’s passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the departure date from Qatar.
- The passenger must have a confirmed return ticket.
- The passenger must have a valid credit card.
- The visa will be granted for 30 days free of charge and is extendable for a similar period only once after confirming the return ticket.
- Passengers should provide a confirmed hotel reservation.
- Passengers arriving directly from Pakistan should have a certificate of vaccination against polio.
Otherwise, you are required to apply for a tourist visa from the Qatari embassy or consulate in your home country, on the Qatari government official website, or during your hotel booking before traveling. Note that fees amount to QR 100 and must be paid on a valid credit or debit card. You will not be able to pay in cash at the immigration counter. The tourist visa has a one-month validity and is renewable once for QR 200. You will need to visit the Abu Hamour immigration office to renew your visa. However, please note that opening times may vary. An immigration official at the airport will be able to assist you in locating the appropriate place.
If your stay is longer than two months, it is commonplace for some ex-pats to embark on ‘visa runs’. This is simply the process of traveling to another destination (possibly Kuwait or Oman) before the expiry of your visa and re-entering Qatar to gain a new visa on arrival. Theoretically, this process can be done indefinitely. However, please be aware that if you are in the middle of applying for a permanent residency visa, you will not be allowed to leave the country until the process has been completed.
Once this deadline has expired, you will pay an additional fee of QR 200 per additional day for the renewal. Furthermore, Qatar Airways, which is the national airline company, now provides an online application system for the tourist visa on its website. The application must be submitted after confirming your flight to Doha. The visa will then be issued within 10 days.
Good to know:
Those wishing to travel freely between Qatar and Oman are required to apply for a Joint Tourist Visa.
If you are going on a business trip to Qatar, it is best to apply for a business visa. This short-term visa will also allow you to work temporarily in the country. However, its validity will depend on the length of your stay in the country. The application can be made upon your arrival in Qatar. In general, the visa will have a 72 hours validity period which can be extended only once. You must also produce a document regarding the purpose of your visit.
You can also request a three-month visa if you intend to make a long business trip. Your host company will then fill out all the related formalities on your behalf. Fees of QR 200 apply.
If you wish to visit family members residing in Qatar, you can apply for a family visit visa. This visa is valid for one month and can be extended provided you undergo a medical examination within 72 hours following your arrival in the country. To apply for the family visit visa, the following documents will be required:
- a duly filled and signed visa application form
- a copy of your host’s identity card or passport
- a letter from your host’s employer (stating your host’s salary)
- proof of kinship ties (marriage certificate, birth certificate, or other …)
- a copy of your host’s lease agreement.
If you want to stay longer in Qatar, you will need to apply for a family visit visa, which is valid for a maximum of 6 months.
Good to know:
The application can be made at the Qatar Immigration office or on the official government website, Hukoomi.
Foreigners wishing to study in Qatar should apply for a student visa. However, an admission confirmation letter from a Qatari university or other higher education institution is essential. You will obtain a one-month visa on your arrival in Qatar.
Thereafter, you are required to apply for a residence permit within a month following your arrival in the country. The following documents are required:
- results of a medical examination
- your blood group
- a record of your fingerprints
- your university (or other higher education institution) confirmation letter
- your letter of admission
- three passport-type ID photos
- your passport
- proof of sufficient funds to support yourself during your stay in the country.
Upon registering with Qatar University, a deposit amounting to some QR 20 000 will be required. This sum will be retained for 2 years on a Qatari bank account.