Qatar

Overview

Ministry of Health (MOH) Public Health Advisory

 

Singapore has implemented the SafeTravel Lanes to facilitate travel while safeguarding public health amidst the COVID-19  pandemic. Travellers should refer to the ICA SafeTravel website for the latest information on travelling to/from or transiting through Singapore. Residents of Singapore intending to depart Singapore are strongly advised to check the latest MOH Travel Advisory for outbound travel. For the latest updates on Singapore's COVID-19 situation, please refer to the MOH website at https://www.moh.gov.sg/covid-19.  

 

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Singaporeans can visit Qatar for up to 30 days without a visa. As visa requirements often change at short notice, we advise you to contact your travel agency, or the Embassy of Qatar in Singapore for up-to-date information.

COVID-19

  

In view of the current COVID-19 situation, non-residents of Qatar who wish to visit Qatar must pre-register on the Ehteraz website (www.ehteraz.gov.qa) before travel to obtain a travel permit. 

 

Since 12 July 2021, Qatar has begun issuing family, tourist and business visas for visitors who have been fully vaccinated with vaccines approved by the Qatar Ministry of Public Health or have recovered from COVID-19. The approved vaccines are Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Johnson & Johnson.

 

Conditionally approved vaccines are Sinopharm, Sinovac, and Sputnik V. A positive serology antibody test pre-travel, with a validity of 30 days, is mandatory for individuals with two doses of a conditionally approved vaccine who wish to travel to Qatar. 

 

Singapore is currently classified as a “Red List” country. Fully vaccinated Qatari citizens and residents as well as citizens of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries (i.e. Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates), coming from Singapore are exempt from quarantine if aged 12 and above. They would have to undergo a PCR test up to 72 hours before arrival in Qatar, and once more within 36 hours of arrival in Qatar.

 

Unvaccinated and not fully vaccinated Qatari citizens and residents as well as citizens of the GCC countries, arriving from Singapore would have to take a PCR test up to 72 hours before arrival in Qatar, undergo a seven-day home quarantine, and a PCR test on their sixth day of quarantine.

 

Fully vaccinated visitors to Qatar (i.e. non-citizens and residents of Qatar and citizens of GCC countries) are to undergo a PCR test up to 72 hours before arrival in Qatar, and once more upon arrival at the quarantine hotel. They will also serve a two-day hotel quarantine or until the PCR test result is ready.

 

Unvaccinated and not fully vaccinated visitors to Qatar with first-degree relatives in Qatar would have to undergo a seven-day home quarantine. Those without first-degree relatives in Qatar are to undergo a PCR test up to 72 hours before arrival in Qatar, and another PCR test on their sixth day of quarantine. The latest updates on Qatar's travel and return policy can be found here.

 

As entry restrictions may change at short notice, you are advised to contact your travel agency or the Embassy of Qatar in Singapore to ensure that you have accurate information for your specific purpose prior to departure.

 

 

Singaporeans are advised to maintain the usual vigilance in public, be aware of local developments and take appropriate steps for personal safety at all times.  Although crime levels are low, female visitors should take extra care when travelling alone at night.

A key area is safety on the local roads. Due to ongoing road constructions, Singaporeans are advised to exercise safety precautions when driving in Qatar. Speeding and minor accidents are common. The driver and passengers should wear a seat belt at all times. You must not use a mobile phone while driving. “Road rage” like rude gestures or even minor expressions can attract significant penalties. Offenders may be fined, imprisoned or deported.

For those who prefer walking, please be extra careful when using road zebra crossings. The local driving culture does not require mandatory stopping or slowing down at zebra crossings for pedestrians. Pedestrians need to be extra alert and wait for cars to slow down before attempting to cross at zebra crossings. 

Qatar is a Muslim country. Singaporeans are reminded that they should respect the local traditions, customs, laws and religions and to adhere to them at all times while in Qatar.

It is illegal to import alcohol and pork products into Qatar. All luggage is scanned at the arrivals hall of Hamad airport.

Expatriates living in Qatar can buy alcohol via a permit system provided by the Qatar Distribution Company. It is also available in licenced restaurants and hotels which may sell alcohol to adult, non-Muslim customers in restricted areas.

It is an offence to drink alcohol or to be drunk in a public place. People breaking this law can be deported, fined or receive prison sentences.

  1. Alcohol should not be transported within the country, except to take it home from the Qatar Distribution Company on the day of collection.
  2. It is an offence to offer alcohol to Muslims and minors.
  3. Muslims caught drinking may be subjected to corporal punishment.
  4. It is illegal to sell, donate or give away alcohol.
  5. It is a very serious offence to drink and drive in Qatar. Driving under the influence of alcohol is punishable by a jail sentence, fine or both. Offenders will also be deported.

Penalties for possession, consumption and trafficking in illegal drugs are severe in Qatar, and offenders will have to undergo long-term imprisonment and pay heavy penalties. Depending on the severity of the offence, the mandatory death penalty may also be meted.

Qatar punishes and forbids the wearing of revealing or indecent clothes in public. Singaporeans in Qatar should take note of this requirement. In public places, women should be modest in their dressing and should avoid sleeveless or low-neck tops, tops with short sleeves that are above the elbows, as well as shorts or tight-fitting dresses above the knee.  Men should note that wearing shorts or sleeveless T-shirts in public is generally frowned-upon and considered offensive.

Ramadan is a holy month for Muslims. During this time, Muslims will abstain from food, drinking and smoking from dawn to dusk. Singaporeans should be aware of the strict level of observance and enforcement of this during their visits to Qatar on the month of Ramadan. Most restaurants will be closed during the daytime, including home deliveries, and will only open after dusk. During Ramadan, non-Muslims should avoid eating, drinking, chewing gum or smoking in public during the daytime, including in your car. Pregnant and nursing women and young children are exempt from the provisions, discretion is still advised. 

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Overseas Travel – Be Informed & Be Safe [Updated on 14 October 2021]

Singaporeans planning overseas travel are reminded to take the necessary precautions, including being prepared to deal with accidents, natural disasters or terrorist attacks. Singaporeans are also reminded to be familiar with your destination’s local laws, customs, and COVID-19 restrictions, including immigration procedures and entry requirements.

Demonstrations do occur in major cities across the world. Such demonstrations can sometimes escalate into violence. It is important for Singaporeans to keep abreast of local news, avoid any protests or demonstrations and heed the advice of the local authorities.

When participating in outdoor leisure activities overseas, Singaporeans should be mindful that certain sporting activities, especially in open seas, may carry risks. Besides ensuring that one has the physical competencies and appropriate condition to undertake the activity, every effort should be made to ascertain if the trip organiser or guide is reliable and competent, and that appropriate safety and contingency plans are in place. When in doubt, Singaporeans should consult the relevant professional bodies or sporting associations for specific advice.

For those planning to travel, here are some tips:

Before travelling

  • Familiarise yourself with our network of overseas missions.
  • Purchase comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage.
  • Equip yourself with research about your destination’s entry requirements, current situation, local laws and customs.
  • eRegister with us on our website (www.mfa.gov.sg) so that we may reach out to you during an emergency.

While travelling

  • Always take care of your personal safety, remain vigilant and monitor local weather news, advisories, and security developments.
  • Exercise caution around large gatherings and avoid locations known for demonstrations or disturbances.
  • Be prepared for possible delays and last-minute changes in travel plans especially during unforeseen events such as natural disasters, social unrests or terror attacks.
  • Stay connected with your friends and family. Inform them of your whereabouts and provide them with your overseas contact details.
  • In the event that you require consular assistance, please contact the nearest Singapore Overseas Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

Advisory: Email Scams

There have been reports of individuals receiving scam emails/messages purportedly sent from friends in distress overseas.  These emails/messages typically originate from an email address/social media known to the receiver bearing claims of the sender getting into trouble overseas and urgently requesting financial assistance.  The sender would also claim to have approached a Singapore Embassy/Consulate and the local Police for help to no avail.

MFA takes the safety of all Singaporeans very seriously.  Singaporeans in distress approaching our Overseas Missions for assistance will be rendered with all necessary consular assistance.  If you receive such emails/messages from purported friends seeking funds transfers, we strongly advise you to call them first to verify the authenticity of the emails/messages before responding to their request.  It is also not advisable to give out any personal information such as NRIC/passport nos., address, telephone number, etc.  Any form of reply, even one of non-interest, could result in more unsolicited emails.  Members of the public who suspect that they have fallen prey to such scams should report the matter to the Police immediately.  Should Singaporeans abroad require consular assistance, they can contact the nearest Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24-hr Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

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