Area: 11,586 sq km
Climate: arid; mild, pleasant winters; very hot, humid summers
Population: 848,016 (July 2011 est.)
Languages: Arabic (official), English commonly used as a second language
Government type: emirate
National Day: 18 December (anniversary of Al Thani family accession to the throne)
Independence Day: 3 September (1971, from the UK); also observed is
Currency: Qatari rials (QAR) ; 1QAR= 0.28USD ; 1USD = 3.64 QAR
GDP: $122.2 billion (2010 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): $145,300 (2010 est.)
Information for Foreign Students in Qatar
Obtaining a Visa
Nationals of Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the UK and the USA can obtain entry visas upon arrival at the airport in Doha paying $25 (cash is not excepted). Visitors may conduct business on an entry visa providing authorities are given prior notice. Those applying for visas in advance must include bank statements from the last three months which must show name, address of the applicant and at least $ 1387 in the account or a formal letter from your employer confirming that you are visiting Qatar on business (if you are applying for a business visa).
For nationals of other countries, we recommend you to contact the embassy to check visa requirements.
Embassy of the State of Qatar in the UK: 1 South Audley Street, Mayfair, London W1K 1HF, UK Tel: (0207) 493 2200.
Embassy of the State of Qatar in the USA: 2555 M St, NW, Washington, DC 20037, USA Tel: (202) 274 1600/3. www.qatarembassy.net
Link for hotels: http://www.qatarvisitor.com/index.php?cID=410&pID=1123&cName=Hotels&pName=hotels
A website link that provides with tips and advice: http://www.qatarvisitor.com/index.php?cID=444&pID=1550
Water used for drinking, brushing teeth or making ice from hotels and public facilities in Doha is generally safe to drink. In other areas, bottled water is a sensible precaution. Hamad General Hospital in Doha offers subsidised medical and dental treatment for tourists although health insurance is advised for pre-existing conditions.
American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa are widely accepted. Travellers cheques are widely accepted, and to avoid additional exchange rate charges, travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars or Pounds Sterling.
The road system is fair, but conditions are poor during the wet season.
Bus: No organised public bus service. Taxi: These have black and yellow number plates, are painted orange and white, and are metered. Taxis can be hired on an hourly basis.
Driving is on the right. As for documentation, An International Driving Permit is required, but a temporary licence can be obtained on presentation of a valid UK licence.
Keeping in touch
Telephone: Country code: 974. There are no area codes. Outgoing international code: 0.
Mobile telephone: GSM 900 network exists. Main network provider is Q-tel (website: www.qtel.com.qa).
Post: Airmail to Europe takes up to a week.
Press: English-language newspapers include the Gulf Times. The main dailies are Al-Raya, Al-'Arab and Al-Sharq.
Radio Stations: BBC World Service (website: www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice) and Voice of America (website: www.voa.gov) can be received. From time to time the frequencies change and the most up-to-date can be found online.