Moving to another country as an expat can be a challenge at first. Once you get the hang of the new culture, you will soon get a clearer view of the wonderful things about the new place; in this case, Qatar. It helps to be prepared by doing research or interviewing people who have been to Qatar because you may be overwhelmed by culture shock.
The following are some of the things you need to know before moving to Qatar and enjoying its wonderful scenes and festivities.
What You Need to Know Before Moving to Qatar
1. Traffic Situation
If you’re used to a country where the flow of cars is organized, and there is less traffic, then you should brace yourself for Qatar’s rush hour. Some drivers will overtake you, so you just have to calm down and let them pass; be a responsible driver to provide your share of keeping the road safe. It’s also important to know how to drive, because the public transportation system is far from perfect. Qatar plans to have a metro railway system, but it will take a few more years for this to become a reality.
2. Wearing Abaya
If you are a foreign woman, you don’t have to wear the abaya, a black gown that covers the entire body except the eyes. However, you have to dress modestly while in Qatar. This involves hiding body parts that you may not be used to hiding back in your original country. You have to cover your knees, midriff, cleavage, and shoulders while in public.
3. Cost of Living
If you are from the Philippines, then be ready to spend a little more when you’ve moved to Qatar. According to a Numbeo survey, the cost of living in Qatar is 68.81 percent higher than in the Philippines. This percentage excludes rent, which is a whopping 486.1 percent higher in Qatar.
4. Eating Pork
As an Arab country, one would expect to not be able to eat pork anymore when in Qatar. That is true to some extent; you can’t go to a restaurant in Qatar and expect to see any pork recipes in the menu. But that doesn’t mean you can’t buy pork; but never eat in public. Eating pork is only allowed inside your homes.
As a small and rich country, Qataris have a healthcare privilege that many other citizens in their respective countries don’t have: free healthcare for everyone. This free healthcare is even available for expats, thanks to a central funding mainly enjoyed by Hamad Medical Corporation and other sources of funding.
These are just some of the many things you have to consider before moving to Qatar. This wonderful country is indeed a great place for expats, especially now that the government is taking necessary steps to make it a more attractive workplace.