Qatar Airways launched back in May last year an interesting stopover package program with +Qatar (Qatar Tourism authority) to get passengers flying on the airline to stay night or two in the city as well. This program was supposed to first end on September 30th but was extended until December 30th (2017), then until April 30 and now until December 31, 2018.
80 nationals are nowadays eligible for visa free entry to Doha and others can apply for a free transit visa under this program. Passengers can buy an second night for $50 under this offer that is good value considering how pricey the hotels in the city can be.
You can access this offer on Qatar’s website here.
You need to book your ticket on Qatar’s website (any OTAs should work too) using multi-city function and schedule a stopover or long transit in the city. You can then (you can actually check the availability in advance using the link above) book the hotel for the duration of your stay (max two nights). You are obviously free to stay longer by booking hotels directly outside of this offer.
Here are list of hotels currently participating:
You will see the confirmation online and Qatar will also email that to the address used. The email contains also the more detailed T&Cs of the program.
Not a surprise that Qatar has decided to extend this offer for the third time now through end of December 2018. The hotels in the country are really hurting due to the blockage and the occupancy rates are hovering around 50% or lower. Better to get passengers to spend some time in the country and use F&B and other services ($$$$).
The Museum if Islamic Art is worth a visit just for the architecture alone. The main souk that is within short walk from the museum is nice in the evening. Then there are the very well air-conditioned malls….
Qatar has removed the more luxurious hotel options for business and first class passengers that were available when this program was first launched. Now, everyone choose from the same set of hotels.
I am taking advantage of this offer for the first time in two weeks time when I have roughly 24 hour transit in the city.