Moving Overseas to or From Qatar
Qatar is a tiny country in the Middle East, covered in arid desert sand, and surrounded on three sides by miles of beaches. Small but mighty, the nation of Qatar boasts the third-highest GDP in the world, fueled by its expansive oil reserves.
Here are some of the rules governing your imports to Qatar:
- You must be present in Qatar when your goods arrive.
- The Destination Agent must have all your documentation at least five days before your shipment arrives.
- Items cannot be locked. They must be accessible for inspection.
- Every box in your shipment will be inspected.
- Prohibited imports may be destroyed without notice.
- Customs clearance will take 5-6 days and does not occur on Fridays
If your shipment is valued at more than $800 US, you will be charged a 5% duty on the estimated value of your goods. In addition, customs officials in Qatar will charge you a $175 legalization fee.
Here is a list of some of the documents you will need to provide:
- Valid passport (Always have your passport with you when traveling in Qatar)
- Visa or residence permit
- Bill of Lading
- Detailed, box-by-box inventory of your shipment
- Statement from employer verifying your status and length of stay
- And if you’ve lived in Qatar previously, you must find someone to vouch for you with a “No Objection Letter”
Importing a vehicle to Qatar
Moving a vehicle to Qatar from North America may end up being more of a hassle than it’s worth. Your vehicle must undergo extensive mechanical alterations to meet Gulf standards and be ready to be driven on the left-hand side of the road. These modifications must be handled by an experienced mechanic, and even when done right, are unsightly. In other words, if you really like your North American car, you should probably leave it home.
To register your vehicle in Qatar, you must be a resident. You will be required to pay a 5% duty on the value of your vehicle and will be subject to a road test and exam to obtain your Qatari driver’s license. For documentation, you will need to provide a copy of your purchase invoice, import manifest, auto insurance policy, and a clean title and valid registration.
Unlike countries in the West, Qatar’s laws are closely tied to their religious practice. Violating Islamic religious values can be enough to get you arrested or expelled from the country. Here is a short list of actions that could get you in trouble:
- Wearing shorts
- Cursing in public
- Talking to others about religions that are not Islam
- Wearing a bathing suit anywhere other than a hotel pool
- Being drunk or drinking in public
Ultimately, moving to another country successfully will require you to adapt your behaviors in deference to local norms. As long as you show respect for others and try to follow the rules, you will be fine.
Three Men and a Truck
Rules, rules, rules…who has time to learn them all? Three Men and a Truck is an overseas moving company that specializes in keeping track of all these special rules so you don’t have to. Working with our experts will give you peace of mind. We will handle all the details, from packing to paperwork, using our specialized expertise and extensive network of shipping partners. Contact us today to learn more.