Intrigued by the allure of Qatar and planning to relocate or visit this beautiful Middle Eastern country? The latest world ranking of the most expensive cities by Mercer reveals that Doha, the capital of Qatar, ranked 133 out of 227 cities with the highest cost of living. This should be taken into consideration when planning to live in Qatar, especially in Doha.
Looking at the brighter side, when compared to other Gulf cities, Doha emerges as a surprisingly cost-effective place to call home. So, let’s explore the anticipated cost of living in Qatar for expats and families considering a move to this beautiful country.
Summary of Cost of Living in Qatar
As per Numbeo data, the living expenses in Qatar are 62.0% higher than in the Philippines. For a family of four, excluding rent, the monthly cost is estimated at 12,102.3 QAR or 3,323.44 USD, in contrast to New York’s cost of living at 5,724.0 USD, which is relatively high.
Qatar’s economic stability hinges on its vast oil and gas reserves, although the nation has diligently endeavored to diversify income sources and reduce dependency on these natural resources. Notably, the expansion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) production capacity plays a pivotal role in this diversification, given that a substantial part of the GDP is intertwined with the oil and gas sector and its related activities. Qatar Petroleum, Qatar Gas, and Ras Gas are prominent energy institutions driving these efforts. Simultaneously, the Ministry of Industry and Energy has spearheaded initiatives to bolster industrial growth, encourage local investment in industries, and provide a solid foundation for the industrial sector.
Cost of Housing in Qatar
Whether you’re a resident or an expatriate, the Qatari real estate scene boasts a diverse range of apartments tailored to suit your preferences and budget. From opulent high-rise apartments in the bustling city of Doha to more budget-friendly choices in the peaceful suburbs, Qatar’s property market is a dynamic landscape. Here’s a closer look at the different apartment types that are available in Qatar:
WEST BAY, DOHA | HOTEL APARTMENT
Situated just minutes away from public transportation, popular restaurants, cafes, and shops, our studio hotel apartment offers the perfect base for exploring the city.
AL RAYYAN | 2 BR APARTMENT
This apartment features two bedrooms with built-in wardrobes, one of them being a master ensuite, it also includes a balcony, where you can enjoy your morning coffee
AL WAAB | 5-BEDROOM VILLA
The compound itself offers an array of world-class amenities, including 24/7 security, a clubhouse, a fitness center, tennis courts, a playground, and beautifully landscaped common areas
Housing in Doha provides a special balance, positioned as more expensive in Oman yet more affordable in Dubai. Housing prices are always among the biggest expenses for foreigners residing in Qatar and they vary depending on several aspects, such as the size, location, and general quality of the house. For example, the average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in downtown Doha is usually about QAR 7000, but the average monthly rent for a three-bedroom apartment may be QAR 11,000 to QAR 14,000 or more.
Cost of Transportation in Qatar
According to I Love Qatar.net, the current transportation rate in Qatar are the following:
– Bus fares range from QR 2.50 for short trips to QR 9 for longer routes.
– Passengers are advised to use the “Karwa Smart Card” for cashless, ticketless payments.
– The card comes in three types: Classic Card (QR 30), Limited Card (QR 10 for two journeys within 24 hours), and Unlimited Card (QR 20 for unlimited journeys within 24 hours).
– Standard Travel Card fares: QR 2 for a single journey, QR 6 for a day pass, and QR 10 for the card itself.
– Goldclub Travel Card fares: QR 10 for a single journey, QR 30 for a day pass, and QR 100 for the card itself.
– Karwa taxi fares within Doha start at QR 4 for the flag fall rate and QR 1.6 per km.
– Outside Doha, the fare is QR 1.90 per km.
– The minimum flag fare from the airport starts at QR 25.
– Ride-Hailing Services (Uber and Careem):
– UberX starts from QR 8, while CareemGO starts from QR 7.5.
– Final fares vary depending on distance, peak hours, and traffic.
– Mowasalat offers luxury limousine services with various car models.
– Booking can be done via phone or through the Karwa Taxi app.
** E-scooter prices, rules, and rental options may vary among different companies.
Cost of Utilities in Qatar
In Qatar, utilities, including electricity and water, are provided by the Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation, known as “KAHRAMAA.” The tariff rates for residential villas and flats in Qatar are as follows:
Electricity Tariff (per layer, measured in kilowatt-hours):
(1 – 2000): QR 0.11 per kWh
(2001 – 4000): QR 0.13 per kWh
(4001 – 15000): QR 0.18 per kWh
(15001 – 9999999999): QR 0.26 per kWh
Water Tariff (per layer, measured in cubic meters):
(1 – 20): QR 5.5 per cubic meter
(21 – 250): QR 7 per cubic meter
(251 – 9999999999): QR 10 per cubic meter
Cost of Healthcare in Qatar
Healthcare in Qatar is accessible through both public and private healthcare providers. Qatari citizens and residents have access to subsidized or free public healthcare services through the Hamad Health Card, which costs QAR 100 for residents and requires a yearly renewal fee of QAR 100.
– Public healthcare services are provided by the state-run Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC).
– Qatari citizens and residents can access extensive healthcare services at HMC clinics and hospitals through the Hamad Health Card.
– While public healthcare significantly reduces the cost of treatment, expats may still have to pay for some medical expenses.
– Qatar’s private healthcare sector is rapidly growing, offering faster service and specialized procedures.
– Private healthcare facilities are on par with public ones, with the added advantage of quicker treatment and specialized options.
– Many expats invest in private health insurance to complement their public care or enjoy private healthcare benefits provided by their employers.
Consultation fees in private healthcare can range from QAR 50 to QAR 500, depending on the facility and the type of service. Expats are encouraged to check their company’s policies to understand which medical services are covered and whether private health insurance is provided.
In 2024, the cost of living in Qatar will be influenced by various factors. Housing costs vary depending on location and property type, with competitive rental prices. Utility rates for electricity and water remain consistent, as provided by KAHRAMAA. Transportation options, including buses, the Doha Metro, and taxis, offer reasonable fares. The diverse food scene caters to different budgets, while public healthcare is subsidized through the Hamad Health Card, and private healthcare options are also available. Families should consider school fees and petrol prices are updated monthly. Qatar’s cost of living remains relatively cost-effective, with expenses influenced by individual lifestyle choices and priorities.