Saturday, June 22, 2024

Qatar Residence Permits and Visas: A Comprehensive Guide

In order to live and work in Qatar, you need a valid Residence Permit that is issued by the Ministry of Interior (MOI). This permit is essential for various official purposes, such as signing rental agreements, paying bills, obtaining a Qatari driving license, and serving as official identification.

Qatar Residence Permit is a rectangular-shaped card that contains details such as your photo, name, date of birth, and an 11-digit ID number. It also specifies your nationality and occupation.

It is important to note that every individual who is living in Qatar, regardless of age, needs a Residence Permit. Whereas non-residents and tourists can stay in the country for the duration of their visa. They cannot work or stay beyond that period without a Residence Permit.

If you are considering moving to Qatar for work or residence, understanding the process of obtaining a Qatar residence visa is crucial. In this article, we have covered a detailed overview of the various types of residence visas, eligibility criteria, application procedures, costs, and essential information to facilitate a smooth transition to life in Qatar in 2024.

Types of Residence Visas in Qatar 

Types of Residence Visas in Qatar 

Obtaining a Residence Permit is essential for legal residence and employment in Qatar. Without it, you cannot enter into legal agreements, sign leases, or even access some basic services. 

Therefore, if you are planning to reside and work in Qatar then you should prioritize obtaining a Residence Permit as soon as possible after arrival in Qatar.

1. Mustaqel Visa

The Qatari government has introduced a new residence permit known as the “Mustaqel Visa” aimed at talented individuals and entrepreneurs. This visa, processed by Jusour, a government-owned manpower company, allows eligible individuals to reside in Qatar for up to five years. While certain details are yet to be clarified, such as work authorization and issuing procedures, applicants can initiate the process online through the Jusour website.


To apply for the Mustaqel Visa, you must ensure the following:

  • The information provided in the application form must match the details in the passport to avoid invalidation of the visa.
  • Dual nationals must select the nationality under which they are applying and will use for travel to Qatar.
  • The passport used for application must match the one used for travel to Qatar, and it must be valid for at least six months from the date of arrival.
  • The passport must contain at least one blank page for visa stamping.
  • Each applicant must apply individually.

Process to Apply

Online Application: Applicants need to visit the Jusour website, register, and activate their account. They can then select the Mustaqel Visa type and provide the required information along with necessary document uploads. Once you have submitted, no changes can be made to the application.

Payment of Administrative Cost: After completing the application, applicants must pay the administrative cost online through the provided payment gateway. The cost varies based on the visa type:

  • Talent Visa Administrative Cost: 4000 QAR
  • Entrepreneur Visa Administrative Cost: 5000 QAR 

The payment should be made using the “3D Secure System” for international transactions.

Download the Receipt: Upon successful payment, applicants will receive a receipt detailing the payment confirmation. It is advisable to retain a copy of this receipt for reference.

Visa Processing: Once the application and payment are complete, the visa processing begins. Applicants are notified of the status via email.

Refund Policy: In case of rejection, a refund will be processed, excluding administrative costs and bank processing fees. Any issues with payments should be reported to the Help Desk team for guidance.

Visa Validity

The Mustaqel Visa allows eligible individuals to reside in Qatar for up to five years from the date of issuance. It is essential to abide by the visa’s validity period to avoid any legal implications.

Cost of Visa

The administrative cost for the Mustaqel Visa varies depending on the type of visa:

  • Talent Visa Administrative Cost: 4000 QAR (approximately 1098 USD)
  • Entrepreneur Visa Administrative Cost: 5000 QAR (approximately 1373 USD)

If your Mustaqel Visa application is rejected, you will receive a refund, excluding the administrative costs and bank processing fee. The administrative cost will be deducted from your bank account in your local currency equivalent to Qatari Riyal.

By following these steps and meeting the requirements, you can apply for and obtain the Mustaqel Visa to reside in Qatar for up to five years.

2. Work Residence Visa

The work residence visa stands as the top choice for expatriates aiming to work in Qatar under the sponsorship of a Qatari company. It entails the employer facilitating the visa application process on behalf of the employee. This visa links directly to the sponsoring employer, necessitating a fresh application if the individual changes jobs.


To obtain a Qatar work residence visa, applicants must furnish several essential documents:

  • A valid passport with at least six months of validity and sufficient blank visa pages.
  • Two recent, color passport photos adhering to specific requirements.
  • A copy of the initial employment visa issued by the employer.
  • The sponsoring employer’s commercial registration copy from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
  • The employer’s business immigration card copy.
  • A medical certificate from an approved clinic in Qatar certifying good health.

Process to Apply

Securing a work residence visa in Qatar involves the following steps:

  • Registration with the Immigration Department: Employers register with the Immigration Department, providing necessary documents such as a copy of their trade license.
  • Work Permit Application: Employers apply for a work permit in Arabic for each employee, specifying job position and nationality. This application requires approval from the Ministry of Labour.
  • Residence Permit Application: Within seven days of the employee’s arrival, the employer applies for their residence permit by submitting necessary documents to the Ministry of Labour.
  • Issuance of Residence Permit: Once the residence permit is issued, employees are authorized to work exclusively for the sponsoring company. They must carry their ID and visas for potential inspections.

Visa Validity

The validity of a work residence visa typically ranges from one to five years, depending on the duration of the employment contract.

Cost of Visa

The cost of a work residence visa varies based on its duration and entries:

  • Employment entry visa: QAR 200 (approximately 55 USD)
  • Work Residence Permit conversion fee: QAR 500 (approximately 138 USD), usually covered by the employer.

Understanding the requirements, application process, validity, and associated costs ensures a smoother transition for expatriates seeking employment opportunities in Qatar under the work residence visa scheme.

3. Family Residence Visa

If you are an expatriate living in Qatar with a valid work residence visa, you can bring your immediate family members to join you through the family residence visa. To be eligible for this visa, you need to have a specialized or technical profession and earn a minimum monthly salary of QR 10,000 (approximately 2746 USD). 

You need to provide essential documentation such as marriage and birth certificates, along with educational records. 

This visa allows your family to reunite and build a life together in Qatar, providing stability and fostering a sense of togetherness. With this visa, your family members can reside in Qatar and enjoy the benefits of living together with you.


To apply for a family residence visa in Qatar, you need to provide the following documents:

  • Fill out the visa application form (if applying offline).
  • Give a copy of your Qatari national ID card.
  • Provide passport copies of all family members, including children.
  • Submit attested marriage and birth certificates, proving your relationship to your spouse and children.
  • Provide educational certificates for family members, if applicable.
  • Include a letter from your employer, confirming your technical profession and that you meet the minimum salary requirements.
  • Show proof of adequate housing, such as a certified rental contract.
  • Submit six months of bank statements showing regular salary deposits.
  • Include a copy of your employment contract, stamped by the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs.

These documents are necessary for your family residence visa application and ensure a smooth processing experience.

Process to Apply

To apply for a Family Residence Visa, you can choose between online and offline methods.

Online Application Process 

  • Download and register on the Metrash2 app.
  • Log in to your account, and select “Visa.”
  • Click on “Issue Visa,” then select “Family Visit.”
  • Choose “Family Resident Application” and fill in your personal details.
  • Confirm that the data you provided is accurate.
  • Once your application is approved, you’ll receive a notification to proceed with fee payment within a few days.

Offline Application Process 

  • Download the Family Residence Visa application form from the official website.
  • Fill out the form completely.
  • Visit the Al Gharrafa Immigration Department.
  • Upon arrival, get a virtual number and wait for your turn.
  • Submit the required documents to the department manager.
  • Once your application is approved, you’ll receive a notification to proceed with fee payment.

Ensure that all required documents are submitted accurately to avoid delays in the application process.

Visa Validity

The family residence visa is valid for one to five years, depending on the duration of the sponsor’s contract.

Cost of Visa

These fees are essential for the visa process and should be paid accordingly.

  • Application fee: QAR 200 (approximately 55 USD)
  • Qatar ID card (valid for one year): QAR 500 (approximately 137 USD)
  • Mandatory medical test fee: QAR 100 (approximately 27 USD)

4. Real Estate Residence Visa

The real estate residence visa offers foreign investors a unique opportunity to obtain residency rights in Qatar by investing in property. To qualify, investors must purchase property in designated areas with a value exceeding QR 730,000 (approximately 200,467 USD). 

This visa grants the holder the right to reside in Qatar for as long as they own the property, providing a straightforward path to residency through real estate investment.


To be eligible for a real estate residence visa in Qatar, a person must meet certain criteria:

  • Citizenship: The applicant must be a non-Qatari citizen.
  • Property Purchase: The applicant must purchase a property in Qatar with a minimum value of QAR 730,000 (approximately 200,267 USD).
  • Good Character: The applicant must maintain good character and possess a clean criminal record.
  • Documentation: The applicant must hold a valid passport and travel health insurance.

There are two options for real estate investors:

  • Temporary Residence Visa: This visa is valid for five years and can be renewed for additional five-year periods.
  • Permanent Residence Visa: Investors who invest in a property worth at least QAR 3,650,000 (approximately 1,002,335 USD) are eligible for a permanent residence visa. This visa is granted for a lifetime.

Both visas allow the investor and their family to reside in Qatar. This provides a great opportunity for individuals looking to invest in Qatar’s real estate market and establish a long-term presence in the country.

Process to Apply

  • Visit the office of the General Directorate of Passports at the Ministry of Interior (MOI).
  • Download the application form available on the official website.
  • Fill out the form with accurate and necessary information.
  • Gather all required documents, including copies of your passport, proof of income, and property ownership documents.
  • Submit the completed form and all necessary documents to the designated MOI officer.
  • The MOI officer will verify the information provided and ensure that all documents are in order.
  • Once the verification process is successfully completed, your residency visa application will be approved.
  • You will receive notification of approval and further instructions from the MOI.

Visa Validity

The Real Estate Residence Visa is initially valid for five years, with the option to extend it based on the proper maintenance of the property.

Cost of Visa

To qualify for a Real Estate Residence Visa:

  • Property value for residency must be over QAR 730,000 (approximately 200,267 USD).
  • For permanent residency eligibility, property value must exceed QAR 3,650,000 (approximately 1,002,335 USD).
  • The application fee is QAR 200 (approximately 55 USD).

To Sum Up

Securing a Residence Permit is crucial for your legal residence and employment in Qatar. Without it, you cannot engage in legal agreements, lease properties, or access certain essential services. Therefore, upon arrival, you should prioritize obtaining your Residence Permit.

In 2024, Qatar is a flourishing global hub for expatriates like you. Navigating the intricacies of residence visas is vital for a smooth transition into the country. Whether you are seeking a mustaqel visa, a work visa, a family visa, or a real estate residence visa, following the guidelines set by the Ministry of Interior is essential.

Understanding the details of Qatar’s residence visa system empowers you to confidently begin your journey to this exciting nation. By carefully planning and following the regulations, the process of obtaining a residence visa becomes your gateway to a fulfilling personal and professional life in this dynamic Middle Eastern country.

Team QT
Team QT
Staff writer at

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