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October 11, 2022

All You Need to Know Before Moving to Qatar

“Small rain lays great dust”, a phrase that ideally describes Qatar with it's not-so-large territory but remarkable ambitions. The country is most known for its riches and 5-star Airline - Qatar Airways, owned and maintained by the government. Qatar, as we know it today, started only a couple of decades ago. Prior to that, the people of Qatar earned their living by finishing and collecting pears.

Moving to Qatar is an extraordinary life opportunity that can not be missed. Qatar is a fast-growing economy with promising perspectives and exceptional opportunities. Hercules Moving Company will arrange your packing and moving home overseas stress-free at a reasonable price. Choosing a trusted international moving company is key for a successful relocation.

Qatar is one of the richest countries in the world. Like its neighbours, it has gained fame and status due to its huge reserves of oil and gas. Despite the modest size - 11,581 km2, almost three million people live in Qatar. However, only about 12% of the population are native Arabs holding citizenship, and 88% are foreign immigrants.

Doha is Qatar’s capital city and the most expensive to live in. More than 2,382,000 reside there, leaving the rest of the population scattered across the country.

We would not recommend wandering around the city during the summer, the temperature goes up to +40°C making it unbearable to stay outside. Fortunately, the country has air conditioning systems all over the city. When it is not too hot, the best local entertainment is dune bashing!

How to Immigrate to Qatar

Unless you are a New Zealand citizen, the only legal way to cross a border in Qatar is to have a visa. Any immigration process starts with determining the suitable visa to apply for, depending on your circumstances.

The most frequent immigration option is through a professional visa. It is also possible to immigrate to Qatar for business, as a family, for student study programs and refugee status.

Family Reunion
Business Owners


Non-residents attend international schools and universities. A letter of guarantee from the university administration is a prerequisite for obtaining a student visa. It should contain a confirmation of enrollment and detailed information on the conditions of the upcoming study.

The student visa is valid for one year with the possibility of extension in the transition to the next course. The student visa must be signed by a sponsor - a college, university, or language school.


A work permit can only be applied for by an individual or legal entity registered with the employment authorities. These applicants are usually the sponsors of future workers. Sponsorship and immigration are interrelated in Qatar.

After obtaining an immigration card, you must register with the Department of Labor and apply for a visa. The gender, nationality and position of the workers to be accepted must be indicated. Once approved by the Department of Labor, copies of passports with the appropriate education certificates must be submitted to the Immigration Department in order for each worker to be registered with his or her work permit.

Family Reunion

If you want to sponsor your family to come along, your income must be no less than QR10,000 ($3457 CAD). At the same time immigration policy has profession (Non-Labor) & housing (Proof of Accomodation) requirements in order to sponsor immediate family members.

Business Owners

It is not difficult to open a legal entity in Qatar. To set up a business in Qatar, you need five shareholders, a Qatari bank account, share capital, a local office and an auditor. Registration does not take more than a month.

The main advantage of business in Qatar is extremely low taxes. Qatar is one of the leaders among the countries with the lowest tax burden in the world. It is also profitable to develop business in Qatar because of the so far low competition. For example, in the neighbouring UAE, the market is oversaturated and highly competitive, and any new foreign company has to survive in the fierce competition there.


Another way to obtain a Qatari citizen or residence permit is through naturalisation. In addition to 30 years of residence in Qatar, it is also possible if the state is interested in the person. Also, one of the seven emirs can grant citizenship for special merits.

Note: Those ex-pats, who want to permanently leave Qatar must obtain an exit visa. You are required to have permission from the sponsor. You can submit your application form on the Qatari government website.

First Steps upon arrival in Qatar

  1. Open a Bank Account.

    It is not difficult to open a bank account in Qatar. If a person has a resident status, the card is issued instantly. Visa and Mastercard are popular payment systems in Qatar. You can get their cards even before your arrival in the country. The Commercial Bank of Qatar offers services for the registration of cards for those who are just planning to move.

  2. Buy a Sim Card.

    There are two big companies, Vodafone and Ooredoo. They have offices in all the shopping centers and separate points of sale in the city.

Healthcare in Qatar

In Qatar, the healthcare system is called Hamad Medical Corporation. Any employer is obliged to provide medical insurance to an employee who is invited to Qatar.

Hospitals are divided into public and private. Sometimes the employer can simply allocate money for treatment in a private hospital. Another option is for the employer to pay for a card for registration in the state health insurance system and its renewal. The card costs about QR250( $86 CAD).

The basic coverage on such a card includes first aid, treatment of injuries and common illnesses like acute respiratory viral infections. For dentists, ophthalmologists and other paid medical services, as well as drugs, this card gives tangible discounts.

By the way, keep in mind that in Qatar it is not so easy to buy even a painkiller. Almost all drugs are sold only with a prescription. Without it, you can get only vitamins, eye drops or bandages.

Earning and Spending in Qatar

Income in Qatar
Taxation System
Cost of Living

In restaurants, waiters and hostesses earn QR2,500-3,000 ($863 - $1035 CAD) per month. Usually, the employer provides them with accommodation and pays for transportation to their place of work. Office workers earn between QR4,000 and 13,000 ($1400 - $4500 CAD), top managers earn between QR20,000 rials ($6901 CAD), and IT Manager up to QR58,000($20,000 CAD).

The minimum wage in Qatar as of June 2022 is QR1000 ($345 CAD) per month. The average salary in Qatar is about QR12,600 ($4350 CAD).

There are no taxes for workers in the country at all. The companies pay them - 10% of their total income per year. That is why many look at working in Qatar as an opportunity to save money for their own businesses.

As a single person living in Qatar, expect to spend about QR3,261( $1125 CAD) per month without rent. A family of four would spend on average QR20,600 ($6900 CAD) per month without rent.

The monthly public transportation pass is QR150 ($52CAD), utilities about QR250 - 406 ($86 - $140 CAD) and monthly groceries would make up 10 - 20% of your monthly income. Driving in Qatar is cheap with the cost per 1 litre QR 2.1 ($0.72 CAD).

Renting vs. Housing in Qatar

Qatar is definitely not a cheap place to live in, although Dubai, Kuwait City, Jeddah, and other countries in the middle east, for example, are still in the more expensive range. Let’s have a look at how much you should expect to spend on accommodation in Qatar.


Real estate prices are extremely high. The monthly rent of a 1 bedroom apartment in a residential area costs about QR4,00 - 6,500 ($1380 - $2250 CAD). Renting a three-bedroom apartment of medium size costs about QR7,000-11,800($2400 - $4070 CAD) per month.

It is important to note that all foreigners working in Qatar rent their properties, and most have employment contracts that offer free or subsidised housing, utilities and furniture. Rental housing has huge perks: swimming pool, sauna, gym, parking, and in some compounds, you can find a basketball court, tennis court and billiard room. All these amenities are included in the rent.


Buying a home in Qatar was, up to a certain point, virtually impossible by law. In 2004, foreign nationals were still allowed to buy land and residential units, but only in certain areas such as Pearl, West Bay Lagoon and the city of Lusail, which is under construction.

Buying a home in Qatar is not the cheapest investment. For example, in the city of Lusail (the city of the future, where the FIFA World Cup 2022 is planned) an 88 square metre apartment will cost QR 1,470,000 ( $506,855 CAD). In Doha, a 3 bedroom house can cost anywhere from QR2,000,000 ($ 690,000 CAD) and the sky's the limit. Before buying real estate, a foreigner must first obtain a Qatari visa. There is no special investor visa yet.

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