Qatar Immigration implements changes to transit visas

A new visa scheme for travellers transiting through Hamad International Airport (HIA) has come into effect from 01 November 2016. The free 96-hour transit visa is available to all Qatar Airways passengers with layovers of five or more hours at HIA, regardless of nationality.

Visas are granted based on the sole discretion of the Ministry of Interior, and must be applied for at least seven days in advance.

Key Highlights

  • The visa should be applied for between 7 and 90 days before arriving in Qatar.
  • Extra time should be allowed for the processing of applications during public holidays.
  • Once approved, the transit visa will be valid for 90 days from the date of issuance (for a single entry into Qatar).
  • Passengers must hold a copy of the pre-approved transit visa at the time of boarding at their airport of origin, as well as when arriving in Doha.
  • Passengers travelling from Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Saudi Arabia, South Sudan, Sudan, and the UAE can only stopover with the free visa on their outward journey, not on the return.

Eligibility Requirements Include:

  • A ticket showing an onward journey out of Qatar on a flight operated by Qatar Airways;
  • A passport (including infants) that is valid for at least six months from the time of arrival in Qatar; and
  • Providing a valid email to facilitate the visa process.

What this means for you as an employer?

Recent changes implemented to transit visas will not only facilitate the process of visa applications, but also  benefit Qatar Airways passengers. We would advise that employers and travellers take note of all the requirements in regards to transiting through Hamad International Airport (HIA).

Please do not hesitate to reach out to your usual PwC contact for further details.

Read more articles on