Attitudes towards dress in Qatar are relaxed, but visitors (men as well as women) are expected to show respect for local culture by avoiding excessively revealing clothing in public. It is generally recommended for men and women to ensure their shoulders and knees are covered.
This is widely expected at Souq Waqif and other traditional markets.
The Qatari riyal is the only currency used in the country and can be obtained through ATMs which are widely available in malls, hotels and around Doha. The Qatari Riyal (QR) is pegged against the US Dollar at QAR 3.64.
The World Health Organization estimates that 99% of Qatar has access to drinkable tap water. However, bottled water is widely consumed in Qatar with plenty of local and imported brands widely available.
The standard voltage is 240 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. Plug points are the same as in the UK. To use electric appliances made for the range of 100 V – 127 V (as is in the US, Canada and most South American countries), one needs a voltage converter or a combined power plug adapter/voltage converter.
All business and commercial activity shuts down during Friday prayers in the morning (around 10 am -12 pm). Several shops remain closed on Fridays while malls open in the afternoon on Fridays.
Qatari ladies will not shake hands with men, and many men will not shake a lady’s hand as a gesture of respect.
Home to around a hundred nationalities, Qatar is a melting pot of cultures with numerous languages being spoken. Being an Arab country, the official language is Arabic, but English is commonly spoken at all public places.
As in all Middle Eastern countries, showing overt affection and intimacy in public is frowned upon.
Qatar is a Muslim country and Islam plays an integral role in daily life. Prayers take place five times per day: at dawn (Fajr), around midday (Duhr), in mid-afternoon (A’asr), at sunset (Maghrib) and about two hours after sunset (‘Esha). The exact timing varies each day according to the sun’s position.
Qatar has been ranked first in terms of safety and security, according Numbeo Crime Index 2020, the world’s largest database of user-contributed data on cities and countries.
Smoking is prohibited in all public spaces including museums, sports clubs, shopping malls and restaurants. Violators can be subject to fines between QAR 1000-3000.
Most hospitality outlets in Qatar include a service charge in the bill. However, a tip of 10-15% as a gesture of satisfaction is appreciated. It is advisable to carry cash for tipping.
GMT + 3
Qatar drives on the right-hand side of the road.
Citizens of over 95 countries are eligible for visa-free entry into the State of Qatar. Allowable lengths of stay vary, and visitors are kindly advised to check with an authorised entity for the terms and conditions that apply.
Qatar has a desert climate with year-round sunshine, extreme temperatures during summer and mild winters. Average monthly temperatures range from 17°C in January to 36°C in July, sometimes reaching highs of 40°C+ during the summer months.
More Information on Qatar can be found here: https://www.visitqatar.qa/en/home