(UPDATED AUGUST 3, 2019)
The little-known country of Qatar has created a very good way for the world to get to know its cultures, its sights, its food, its shopping and more. Qatar Airways is offering 5-star hotel stays for 28 USD for one night to passengers who have a stopover in Qatar of at least 12 hours.
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QATAR AIRWAYS STOPOVER
With the Qatar Airways stopover programme you can have a stopover in Qatar of up to four nights, book greatly discounted luxury rooms and take tours of the city and desert.
In addition to a 5-star hotel room for 28 USD, you also have the option of booking two nights in a 5-star hotel for only 110 USD, three nights for 160 USD, or four nights for 210 USD total.
4-star hotels with your layover flight are also available, from 23 USD for one night to 165 USD for four nights.
You must book your flight by December 28, 2019 and travel by December 31, 2019, flying Qatar Airways both into and out of the Doha, Qatar airport, to qualify for these hotel stays.
When I traveled to Qatar in 2010, it was a beautiful country but there was virtually no tourism infrastructure at all. I didn’t leave Doha, and I explored the city’s sights via foot, taxi and city bus. I really loved Souq Waqif and the corniche. My partner actually traveled to Qatar on business in June of 2017 and enjoyed the Museum of Islamic Art and the desert.
Over the past few years the country has worked very hard on its tourism sector. Now there are many more amazing sights to see in Doha as well as the rest of the country, and it’s much easier to see everything. Now you can also visit Katara Cultural Village, see the Pearl, take a dhow river cruise and a lot more.
You can visit the sights of Qatar on your own or by booking private or group tours even when you’re only transiting through on your way to another destination. I am definitely planning a return to Qatar to see how much it’s changed.
QATAR AIRWAYS TRANSIT VISA
The country of Qatar is now offering a transit visa free of charge if you’re in the country anywhere between 5 and 96 hours. So if you’re into making friends in foreign locations like I am and you want to max out your free visa, you just might be able to make some long-term friendships. Here are FAQ’s about stopover flights in Doha, Qatar with this Qatar Airways offer.
The Qatar Airways booking promotion and the visa-free entries are part of Qatar’s efforts to bring tourists back to the country after a diplomatic crisis in June 2017 adversely affected tourism. When it decided to allow visa-free entry to people from 80 countries, Qatar moved itself into the number one position of Middle Eastern countries most open to tourists.
So, if you want to explore a beautiful, glamorous and mysterious country while also saving money, Qatar is the place to go now.
QATAR AIRWAYS AWARDS
Qatar Airways as well as the country’s airport, Hamad International Airport, have won multiple awards in 2018 as well as previous years in the Skytrax World Airlines Awards and Skytrax World Airport Awards.
Qatar is located on the Arabian Gulf near Saudi Arabia and the UAE
Safety in Qatar
Contrary to very popular and deeply-ingrained belief, you do not have to worry about violent crime or terrorism in most of the Middle East, including Qatar. These dangers are not common. It is instead significant cultural differences of which you need to be aware. I know this sounds unbelievable, but it is true. Here is a brief, pretty accurate article which succinctly outlines some of the most important things you need to be careful about in Qatar.
Qatar Language – Arabic (English is widely spoken)
HOW TO BOOK A LUXURY HOTEL ON YOUR STOPOVER IN QATAR IN 3 EASY STEPS
1. Under the Discover tab on the top of the home page choose Qatar Stopover (you can also find Qatar Stopovers by clicking here) to book your multi-city flight on Qatar Airways. Make sure you have a layover flight in Doha of at least 12 hours.
2. Use your booking number to arrange for your visa to visit the country. People from 80 countries are eligible for a free visa to Qatar. You can click here for the visa page.
3. Once you have completed your booking, you will see the available stopover offers on the booking confirmation page and email. You can view the available 4-star and 5-star hotels right here. Now you can visit Qatar in style!
If you want to take a tour of Doha and/or the desert and don’t have much time for the tour, you can find discounted transit tours of Qatar here. Each tour is three or four hours long, so even if your layover is not overnight you can still get a taste of the country.
Qatar is adding more and more tours all the time. When you’re transiting in Doha, you can now enjoy a large variety of activities like:
take a tour of Doha in a chauffeur-driven limousine
go on a Monster Bus excursion of the desert
hang out on the beach at a hotel
go stand-up paddle boarding or kayaking
You can find some truly gorgeous and exotic sights that you should see in Doha right here.
It is so easy to visit this beautiful desert country on a Qatar Airways layover with a free hotel stay and a free transit visa. I am definitely visiting Qatar again soon, insha’Allah. I hope you’ll consider visiting this very fascinating country too.
Photo Credits: Qatar Airways, NawalEscape, NordCapStudio, Walsarabi