Qatar Tourism Authority has announced that a new transit visa scheme, which allows passengers with layovers of five hours or more in Hamad International Airport to request a complimentary transit visa, has gone into effect.
The new system will allow transiting passengers of all nationalities to enter Qatar for up to 96 hours in between flights.
All visas are granted at the sole discretion of the Qatari ministry of interior.
The initiative to introduce a free transit visa is the result of a collaboration between Qatar Airways and QTA to position the country as a tourist-friendly destination and to attract more international visitors.
Passengers can apply for their free transit visa through any of Qatar Airways’ offices or online.
To be eligible for the transit visa, passengers must have a confirmed ticket for a journey into Qatar, with a confirmed onward journey out of Qatar on a Qatar Airways-operated flight.
To ensure passengers can make the most of the new Transit Visa, Qatar Airways has restructured their fares for international flights transiting through Hamad International Airport.
This will allow passengers to have a free stopover in Doha without any additional charges to their ticket, either on the outbound or inbound journey.
However, passengers traveling from the GCC and Middle East on return tickets will be able to take a stopover in Doha on their outbound journey only without additional charges.
Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al Baker said: “Qatar Airways is proudly committed to making Doha a world-class tourist destination.
“Our collaboration with Qatar Tourism Authority in setting the new transit visa enables our passengers to explore the country and its hospitality.
“The tourism industry in Qatar is experiencing considerable growth inspired by the vision of our leadership for an economically diverse future.
“As a national flag-bearer and an ambassador of Qatar around the world, Qatar Airways is dedicated to providing passengers with their best experience before, during, and after their stay in our country.”