Qatar’s ministry of interior and Qatar Tourism Authority have announced that Qatar will now make electronic travel authorisation available to visitors from a host of new countries.
Travellers who hold valid residence permits or visas from either the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Schengen countries, or the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council are welcome to use the new service.
This new system, which will take effect on September 27th, will allow eligible visitors to obtain an ETA by completing a simple online application prior to travel.
As part of the application, applicants will be required to provide proof of accommodation (e.g. hotel booking), details of their return (or onward) travel, a copy of their passport with a minimum validity of six months, and a copy of their residence permit or visa to the aforementioned countries, with a minimum validity of 30 days.
Once the applicant’s request has been approved they will receive an ETA that is valid for use within 30 days.
The ETA allows travellers to obtain a visa-on-arrival to Qatar, which will permit them to stay in the country for up to 30 days during a single visit.
The visa may be extended online for 30 additional days to be used during the same visit.
If the visitor leaves the country and wishes to return, they will need to apply for a new ETA before travelling back to Qatar.
Brigadier Mohammed Al Ateeq, director general of the department of passport and expatriates affairs at Qatar’s ministry of interior, commented: “We are continuously reviewing Qatar’s visa policies and seek to update them in line with Qatar’s economic and social aspirations.
“We look forward to hosting visitors from around the world through this system, which will further streamline the visa application process.
“Visitors who are not eligible for an ETA are also welcome to apply for a regular tourist visa through the same e-visa platform.”
This development comes as part of a series of measures that Qatar has taken to facilitate visitor access to the country.
Last month, Qatar waived visa requirements for nationals of 80 countries around the world.