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Advice on Qatar?

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by cgsac, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. cgsac

    cgsac New commenter

    I am looking at working in a a school in Qatar however I have heard a number of horror stories about the need for a visa to leave the country each time you wish go overseas. I am a UK passport holder and keep hearing that you need to apply via the school for a visa even for a weekend away.....any info out there,
  2. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    As regular readers of my ramblings on the TES will know only too well, Mrs Hippopotamus and her overweight husband spent five years in Doha. Yes, cgsac, you do indeed have to get permission from your school in order to leave the country. This is true. Yes, it does sound pretty ghastly, but in reality it is quick, painless and hassle-free in most cases. I believe that a lot of schools can do the whole thing online, so it really is not an issue. The UAE does not operate a similar system, but Saudi does, if my memory serves me correctly.

    If you really are convinced that you will need to get away from Qatar every weekend, then perhaps the sensible (and cheaper) option would be not to go there in the first place, cgsac. If you will only leave for Christmas and at the end of the academic year, then there is no problem and it is just a formality. Let the school's HR people know well in advance and it will all be sorted out.
  3. tedpop

    tedpop New commenter

    The government are changing this law come December. Apparently you will no longer apply to your school but to the government, which will apparently make the process more efficient. It'll be a case of you informing them you're leaving the country, and your employer will only stop you if they have good reason to (unfortunately, no one yet knows what these reasons are...).

    I say apparently because this is Qatar, and a lot of things that are meant to happen never do. Watch this space...
  4. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Well, in Qatar there were meant to have been "changes" in the law in the past and guess what? They never happened. So probably tedpop is right to be more than a little bit sceptical. Will it really make much difference for expat teachers? Probably not.
  5. DarthVader1234

    DarthVader1234 New commenter

    The exit visa situation is not as bad as it sounds. Not for the majority of European ex-pats in Doha anyway. Its the poor Nepali and Indians working in slave like conditions who really suffer from this rule. Most schools will happily process these for you as long as you hand in your request a few weeks before. As I remember it was just a one page form. The good schools shouldn't pose a problem however there are some shady outfits in Qatar that might cause some of their staff problems.
  6. didaxis

    didaxis New commenter

    I am in Qatar right now. The exit visa is really not a problem in most Qatar schools. ask your HR department at least 7 days in advance and they will have it issued at no cost to you.

    In an emergency they can be issued in minutes (one of my colleagues had a relative in hospital and was out of the country the same day on compassionate leave).

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