As part of the gradual lifting of restrictions imposed in Qatar as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and based on Qatar’s travel policy announced previously, new travel policies will come into effect from 01 August.
Qatar will begin reopening its borders to foreign travellers and will allow citizens and permanent residents to travel in and out of the country from 01 August, with some restrictions in place for those travelling.
Those returning to Qatar from low-risk countries are required to take a Coronavirus test upon arrival at the airport. They will also be required to sign a formal pledge in which they state they will adhere to home-quarantine for a week. During this time your status on the Ehteraz application will be yellow, which means that you are required to quarantine.
After the initial week you will be required to visit a dedicated health centre to undertake another Coronavirus test. If the result of the second test is positive, you will be transferred to isolation, however if it is negative your quarantine period ends at the end of that week and your status on the Ehteraz application will change to green.
The full list of low-risk countries can be found here and will be reviewed and updated every two weeks. Those travelling can obtain a COVID-19 test at an accredited centre in the point or origin, this means that you will be exempted from taking a test at the airport upon arrival in Qatar, provided that the date of obtaining the certificate does not exceed 48 hours before traveling.
Arrivals from countries that are not included in the low-risk countries list and in which COVID-19 testing centres have been accredited are required to obtain a virus-free certificate no more than 48 hours before travelling. Those arriving back to Qatar must also adhere to the home quarantine policy as mentioned above.
Those arriving from 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 upon arrival at their own expense for one week. The accommodation must be booked through the Discover Qatar website before arriving in Qatar.
After the initial week has elapsed, if the result is positive, you will be transferred to isolation, and if it is negative, you will be required 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.
Meanwhile, Qatari citizens, their spouses and children, and those with permanent residency will be able to travel outside the country and return at any time. They will be subject to coronavirus tests or quarantine upon their return depending on whether the country of departure is deemed low risk or not.
Residents outside the country will also be allowed to return to Qatar starting from 01 August. This will be done in a phased approach and will be 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. Employers are required to 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.
The Ministry of Public Health has identified that some categories will be eligible for home quarantine for a week, regardless of the country from which they arrived. These exceptions include those over 55, pregnant women, those with certain underlying health conditions. The full list can be found here.
It should also be noted that the process of issuing return permits for residents must be done 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 Qatar, please click here.
If you have any questions about how these changes may affect you or your organisation, please get in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org or +974 (0) 4 495 4666.
Disclaimer: All information provided in this article was correct at time of publishing. Dates are subject to change without notice, please check with the relevant local authority or your Links Group representative for further information.