Qatar government issues travel policy in anticipation of lifting international travel restrictions to the country. Below is the statement from Qatar’s Government Communications Office on the travel policy during the gradual lifting of COVID-19 restrictions:
As part of the gradual lifting of restrictions imposed in the State of Qatar as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and based on Qatar’s travel policy announced previously, the travel policies effective Saturday 1 August have been reviewed based on public health indicators in the State of Qatar and around the world.
First – the quarantine policy has been reviewed and the following has been decided:
- Arrivals to the State of Qatar from low-risk countries are required to take a Coronavirus test upon arrival at the airport, and to sign a formal pledge to adhere to quarantine at home for a week, noting that the traveller’s status on the Ehteraz application will be yellow, which means that they are required to quarantine. After the week has elapsed, the traveller must go to one of the dedicated health centres to get another Coronavirus test. If the result is positive, the traveller will be transferred to isolation, and if it is negative, the quarantine period ends at the end of that week and the traveller’s status on the Ehteraz application will change to green. It should be noted that the list of low-risk countries will be published on the Ministry of Public Health’s website and announced by the Civil Aviation Authority. The list of low-risk countries will be reviewed every two weeks. If there are accredited COVID-19 testing centres in one of these low-risk countries, obtaining a COVID-free certificate from one of these centres exempts the traveller from taking the test at the airport upon arrival in the country, provided that the date of obtaining the certificate does not exceed 48 hours before traveling.
- Arrivals from countries that are not included in the list of low-risk countries and in which COVID-19 testing centres have been accredited are required to obtain a virus-free certificate from there no more than 48 hours before travelling. The arrivals must also adhere to the home quarantine for a week upon arrival in Doha while also following the policy and conditions applied to arrivals from the low-risk countries mentioned above.
- Arrivals from other countries that are not included in the list of low-risk countries and in which there are no accredited COVID-19 testing centres will be required to quarantine in a hotel at their own expense for one week, provided that hotel accommodation is booked through the “Discover Qatar“ website before arriving in the State of Qatar. After the week has elapsed, the ending of the quarantine period will depend on the result of a COVID-19 test. If the result is positive, the traveller will be transferred to isolation, and if it is negative, the person will commit to home quarantine for another week, in which case the status on the Ehteraz application will be yellow and will then change to green after the week has passed.
Second – Qatari citizens and their wives, spouses and children, and permanent residency holders:
- They can travel outside the country and return at any time, while adhering to all the aforementioned procedures and according to the countries of arrival.
- Patients receiving treatment abroad at the expense of the state of Qatar and their registered companions, and employees who are dispatched for work assignments, will be exempt from bearing the cost of the hotel, as the relevant body will cover the costs of the hotel quarantine if the traveller meets the conditions of the hotel quarantine, as explained in the statement.
Third – residents:
- They will be allowed to return to the State of Qatar starting the first of August 2020. Residents’ entry will be organised based on a series of priorities, including public health indicators, the nature of the needs of the various government and semi-government sectors and humanitarian cases, and through submitting return requests for permits via the “Qatar Portal” website based on the above-mentioned priorities.
- The employer shall bear the costs of the quarantine in the dedicated facilities for blue collar workers in the private sector and domestic workers at a nominal cost after obtaining the entry permit.
Fourth – categories eligible for home quarantine:
The Ministry of Public Health has identified the following categories eligible for home quarantine for a week, regardless of the country from which they arrived:
- Those over 55
- Those who have had an organ or spinal cord transplant
- Those who receive immunosuppressive therapy
- Those who suffer from heart disease
- Those who suffer from moderate to severe asthma
- Those who receive cancer treatment
- Pregnant women
- Babysitting mothers with children up to five years-old
- Those who suffer from kidney failure
- Those with chronic liver disease
- Those with lower limb amputation
- Those with disabilities who require support to carry out activities
- Disabled children and their mothers
- Those who suffer from epilepsy and receive treatment
- Those with diabetic foot
- Those with immediate relatives who have died in the 10 days prior to their arrival
- Those receiving treatment for mental and psychiatric illnesses, and people suffering from claustrophobia
- Those who suffer from diabetes and receive treatment
- Those who have high blood pressure
Workers in the various sectors are required to coordinate the dates of travel and return with their employers. Families and workers in the education sector must take the quarantine period into account when planning their return to the State of Qatar in order to avoid absence during the mandatory quarantine period, whether in the designated facilities or at home.
It should also be noted that the process of issuing return permits for residents will be through the “Qatar Portal“ website until the need to organise the entry process ends, based on relevant public health indicators.
For more information regarding the process of issuing return permits to the State of Qatar, you can visit the Ministry of Public Health page on COVID-19 or contact the Government Contact Centre via the hotline (109).
List of Countries Classified Low Risk of COVID-19
1 Brunei Darussalam
6 New Zealand
31 United Kingdom