Obtaining visas for Qatar

Most visitors travelling to Qatar for tourism or business purposes require a visa. Whether a person needs to apply for a visa before arrival or can obtain one at the point of entry will depend on their nationality. Getting a visa for Qatar prior to arrival is fairly straightforward, and can be done via the Hukoomi website (the government’s official ePortal) or the Ministry of the Interior.

Those who wish to live and work in Qatar for the long term will be required to obtain a residence and work permit for Qatar.

Residents of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and citizens of certain countries listed by the Qatari government can receive a tourist or visit visa on arrival without prior application or additional documentation.

Nationals from countries that are not on the list can apply for a tourist visa through their nearest Qatari foreign mission or a list of authorised hotels, which can be found on the Hukoomi site.

People travelling to Qatar are advised to have a passport that is valid for at least six months after the date of their arrival in the country. They are also required to show proof of accommodation and a credit or savings balance of an amount stipulated by the Qatari government. Depending on passport control, it may also be necessary to produce a return ticket.

Tourist visas are valid for a maximum of one month, and visitors who want to stay longer will have to apply for a Residence Permit after they arrive. Those travelling to the country for work purposes need to get a business visa for Qatar. The local business receiving the overseas visitor often takes responsibility for the process and will need to provide a letter of invitation. Business visas can be applied for online, are usually valid for one month and can be extended for a further two months.
Those travelling to the country for work purposes need to get a business visa for Qatar. The local business receiving the overseas visitor often takes responsibility for the process and will need to provide a letter of invitation. Business visas can be applied for online, are usually valid for one month and can be extended for a further two months.
To stay in the emirate, expats need to enter Qatar on the relevant visa and apply for a work residence permit after they arrive . Permits are only granted to applicants who are either sponsored by a company or a family member in the country who earns more than the minimum threshold.

Expats have to stay in Qatar while their entry visa is converted to a residence permit. Applying for a residence permit in Qatar can be tedious, and certain documents will have to be brought from the employee's home country.

In order to legally work in Qatar, expats will require the relevant permits. Work permits for Qatar are formally known as work residence permits. All types of visas allow entry into the country and are exchanged for an employment-based residence permit after the holder arrives.

Expats will need to have found a job and a local employer to act as their sponsor before they apply for a work residence permit. After the necessary paperwork is completed, the employing sponsor usually takes responsibility for the application.

family

Expats who have a work residence permit for Qatar and earn more than a stipulated amount per month can legally sponsor their family for a residence visa.

Certain documents have to be submitted to the Ministry of Labour in Qatar, including application forms for each family member, an employer’s letter, passport copies and proof of residence, as well as birth and marriage certificates, where applicable.

Expats in Qatar on a family-sponsored residence permit are not allowed to work but can apply to the Labour Department for the right to do so after they arrive.

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