Marhaba from Doha !!
Moving to Doha! Sounds easy, no? For some people it is so easy, they get on the plane, sit for 5-6 hours or so, and they are in Doha enjoying their life one day at a time. Well, I wish I was one of these people.
Anyway preparing to move here took me a couple of weeks, the hardest part was to find out what to bring with me and what to leave behind. Believe me when I tell you, that it was not an easy task as I didn’t know what I would need here, how the weather is like, what I would not find here that I need to bring with me and so on . Personally, I searched and looked around the web none of the blogs that I came across had the information that I was looking for.
Issuing the visa will totally depend on your sponsor, the more they need you, the faster they will follow up with the authorities, and the harder they will try to get it as fast as possible. However, sometimes the process would still take some time. I personally was lucky enough to get my visa in one day, however one of my friends here had to wait 3 months till she got her! So if your visa is taking time be patient and don’t worry, it is just a matter of time 🙂
Summer is super hot, but I have to admit that it is not as humid as other gulf countries. I personally prefer the weather here rather than the weather in Dubai for example. In winter the weather gets cold during night times and early mornings so a sweater is needed. Make sure you bring a couple with you, and during some nights a light jacket would be a must. So make sure you get light clothes for summer and get ready for the heat waves, and don’t forget sweaters and light jackets for winter.
Don’t pay attention to any of the stereotypes that you here about the Middle East. People don’t live in tents and they are not riding camels and they also are not the characters portrayed with Jack Bauer in 24!! People are friendly and you will find everything when you arrive, everything is available at the airport. You can get your SIM card, exchange money and what have you. The only thing you won’t be able to get is alcohol, as here in Qatar in order to buy alcohol you will need to issue your own alcohol license which will allow you to purchase and enjoy your alcohol, a license valid only for you!
There are buses that have a schedule online and taxis that are available all the time. A subway is currently under construction.
“Karwa” is the official company that is monitoring all the transportations, taxis, public buses and even limousine services. All the official taxis have Karwa written on their doors. And when I say official I mean it, as you will find here that wherever you go and while waiting for a taxi, you will be approached by strangers asking you if you need a taxi. Be aware of scammers!
This is not an official transportation method and your safety now is in your own hands. That being said, there are some drivers who operate on their own and you’d find that some would actually be very kind and helpful, and would pick you up anytime of the day or night for that matter. Just make sure to ask your friends for a driver that they trust or deal with. Otherwise, always use a Karwa taxi.
Karwa’s official website http://www.mowasalat.com/en/portal
These are some of the basics things that crossed my mind, but feel free to comment below if you have any questions and hopefully I’ll have an answer for your questions 🙂
Welcome to Doha, and enjoy.
Salam from an orange !