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***Packing for Qatar***

Discussion in 'Teaching overseas' started by Ms_Smiles, Oct 26, 2017.

  1. Ms_Smiles

    Ms_Smiles New commenter


    So, in a similar vain to the post about what to take to China, I wanted to seek some advice re packing for sunny Qatar.

    Having done some limited research and speaking to people who are currently out there, I have been advised to start purchasing the following bits:

    • Bedding! Apparently, tad tricky to purchase, quality not at that great. Bit confused about what size to buy. The beds I will be given are a Queen size, er any advice on it's UK equivalent so I can start making purchases please!
    • Cosmetics and toiletries
    • Clothes and shoes - no such thing as sales over there plus not so great as in our High Street stores
    • Curtains!
    • Notecards, thank you cards, diaries and gift bags! Wanted to buy some gifts for the new team I will be joining and been advised that these items are either tricky to locate or v expensive.
    • Essentials - teabags, photos and other bits to make me feel at home!
    That's my initial list!

    It would be really helpful to hear from others who have gone through this process.

    Thank you for reading :)
  2. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Hmm. Mrs H and I were in Doha for five years and now we are in China. On the whole, shopping in Qatar is much more like shopping in the UK, in terms of what is available, quality and prices.

    Until you are absolutely sure which apartment you are going to have, I would not rush out and buy any curtains or bedding. Sorting out who-goes-where is not something that most schools can do in October, I would suggest, as there will be quite a lot of uncertainties about who is leaving and who is staying.

    There is one thing that you have not mentioned in your list of purchases: a car. Taxis are cheaper than in the UK, of course, but finding a taxi is not always easy. Young ladies who hang around at the street corners in Doha, desperately trying to get a taxi, may receive some rather unwelcome attention. Carrying your shopping back to your apartment is not a good idea when the temperature is 40+ C.
  3. PuRe

    PuRe Occasional commenter

    Hi, uber/Kareem taxis are readily available & no one stands on a street corner nowadays that I’m aware of due to these preorder taxis. There are places (i.e IKEA) to buy bed lining but you get more for your money back home, I brought 2 sets king size. I would bring a blanket it’s going to get cold or a high end tog duvet.

    Gift bags again you can buy from the dollar kind of stores but again how much space do you have? You can buy most things here but I would just bring the items you can’t do without, MAC stuff can be expensive & limited but..... cost is relative.

    Plus when you go home at Christmas you could top up, assuming your new school has sorted your RP by then, message me your school name I might have an insight.
  4. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    It was nearly five years ago that the Hippopotamuses were in Doha, before the advent of Uber. Yes, the RP can be a week or two, but if you had the misfortune to be at certain schools then it might be a month or two...
  5. shirleybitgirl

    shirleybitgirl New commenter

    I have no experience of working in Qatar but I am now into my fourth year in Oman. Before going out there, I was contacted by a departing teacher who was selling her car and advised me as a single female to put it at the top of my list. OK she was trying to sell her car but it turned out to be good advice! I don't want to generalize about the Middle East but getting around as a single female can sometimes be uncomfortable. Having a car makes you more independent.
  6. Ms_Smiles

    Ms_Smiles New commenter

    Thank you both for your replies.

    I will starting the job in January 2018 and I have already received the measurements for the windows, just unclear on the bed sizes!

    I think I shall drop you a DM Hippo as I forgot that you have experiences of living in Qatar.

    My RP will be processed after I have arrived and as such I have been advised not to take my family with me until everything is finalised. I am beginning to learn that almost everything takes an absolute age!!
  7. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    Car prices are excellent for used cars these days.
  8. Ms_Smiles

    Ms_Smiles New commenter

    That's something I am sure my husband will be interested in! Shall pass on all the information related to all things motor to him. Thanks for sharing!
  9. Odhran32

    Odhran32 New commenter

    Check out qatarliving or qatarsale for cars. If you will be your husbands sponsor I have heard that you have to be in the country 6 months before you can sponsor him which will mean a costly visa run. No more £60 return flights to Dubai these days...
  10. truth_seeker12

    truth_seeker12 Occasional commenter

    Visa runs are only to Kuwait or Oman currently and are around £200 per person per visit. Also, take in to account family visa costs. I am finding out how expensive it really is. Be prepared for at least one visa run and up to three before you can get family residency.

    Of course, if the blockage ends, it would be £75 per person per visit plus the usual costs of extention visa every month
  11. truth_seeker12

    truth_seeker12 Occasional commenter

    Debenhams and Zara have all types of bedding. IKEA too so shouldnt be a problem. A little more expensive thought but so is everything else.
  12. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Some good advice from shirleybitgirl.
  13. snowflakesfalling

    snowflakesfalling Occasional commenter

    You can get all the usual home stuff in Ikea
  14. snowflakesfalling

    snowflakesfalling Occasional commenter

    I can't think of anything that you actually can't get in Qatar - the only problem is sometimes things are available and sometimes not. Most things are more expensive. You can get allsorts in Carrefour/Monoprix/Lulu I've tried all kinds of teabags both here and brought from home but I've yet to find any that make a decent cuppa. You can order through Next and get a delivery in Qatar.
  15. deadly lampshade

    deadly lampshade New commenter

    I'm sorry if this comes across as a little negative......

    But I'm actually wetting myself with laughter!!

    Of all the problems and hurdles that you will have to overcome being a new member of staff at our school,,,

    The availability of gift bags does not really get into the top 200 things to worry about!!!
  16. truth_seeker12

    truth_seeker12 Occasional commenter

    Its not negative. Of course there will be many hurdle but no one realises this till they step in to the country. After, 3 months or so everyone tends to be fine. Then the gift bag buying starts.
  17. truth_seeker12

    truth_seeker12 Occasional commenter

    Please take in to account how expensive it is to live here with family. People kept telling me but it really does hit you when you are here. 8 squids for some strawberries is not cheap at all.

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