Foreign travel advice

Qatar

Important COVID-19 Travel

Under current UK COVID-19 restrictions, you must stay at home. You must not travel, including abroad, unless you have a legally permitted reason to do so. It is illegal to travel abroad for holidays and other leisure purposes.

Check the rules that apply to you in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

If you intend to travel to the UK from abroad, including UK nationals returning home, you must provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result taken up to 3 days before departure. If you do not comply (and you do not have a valid exemption) your airline or carrier may refuse you boarding and/or you may be fined on arrival.

Before you return to the UK you must provide your journey and contact details. You must self-isolate when you enter the UK from any foreign country except Ireland, unless you have a valid exemption.

When you enter England from abroad (except Ireland), you must follow the new requirements for quarantining and taking additional COVID-19 tests. For those travelling from a country on the banned travel list you will be required to quarantine in a hotel. Different rules apply for arrivals into England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

If you are legally permitted to travel abroad, check our advice on your country of destination. Some other countries have closed borders, and may further restrict movement or bring in new rules including testing requirements with little warning.

Summary

The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to:

  • the whole of Qatar based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks.

If you are returning to the UK from Qatar on or after 4am on 16 January, you will need to self-isolate on your return. Check the latest guidance for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

The FCDO is not advising those already travelling in Qatar to leave at this time. Travellers should follow the advice of the local authorities on how best to protect themselves and others, including any measures that they bring in to control the virus. You should contact your tour operator or airline if you have any questions about your return journey.

Travel to Qatar is subject to entry restrictions

  • From 1 August 2020, British nationals outside of Qatar and holding a Qatar residence permit are allowed to enter the country, subject to receiving prior approval.
  • From 29 November 2021 any resident leaving Qatar will receive their exceptional entry permit automatically.
  • Upon entry to Qatar, you will need to quarantine for 7 days in a government-approved hotel at your own expense. Further quarantine may be required depending on your test results. From 22 December 2020, all residents arriving on flights originating in the UK will be required to stay at a designated hotel for their quarantine period. These must be booked through the Discover Qatar website.

See Entry requirements for more information before you plan to travel.

Preparing for your return journey to the UK

If you’re returning to the UK from overseas, you will need to:

If your return journey to the UK transits another country, you should check whether it is subject to a travel ban or any other additional requirements. If so, contact your travel provider.

Check our advice on foreign travel during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and sign up for email alerts for this travel advice.

If you’re planning travel to Qatar, find out what you need to know about coronavirus there in the Coronavirus section.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.

For information about COVID-19 vaccines, see the Coronavirus page.

Around 20,000 British nationals live in Qatar, and approximately 130,000 visit each year. Most visits are trouble-free.

Following the attack on the coalition base at Taji in Iraq on 11 March 2020, and subsequent US airstrikes, tensions may be raised across the region. There is a possibility of an increased threat against Western interests, including against UK citizens. You should remain vigilant and keep up to date with the latest developments, including via the media and this travel advice.

The land border between Saudi Arabia and Qatar has now reopened and flights from Qatar to Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have resumed after a longstanding diplomatic dispute was resolved earlier this year.

Terrorist attacks in Qatar can’t be ruled out. See Terrorism

You can contact the emergency services by calling 999 (police, fire and ambulance).

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.

The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.