India and 80 other nations are now able to travel towards Qatar without visa. The visa rules were changed with immediate effect on Wednesday. The countries include India, the United Kingdom, the US, Canada, South Africa, Seychelles, Australia and New Zealand.
Qatar is scrapping visa requirements for visitors from 80 countries as it weathers a boycott by four Arab states and gears up to host the World Cup in 2022. Upon their arrival, a multi-entry waiver would be issued free of cost at the airport. The maximum period of validity of the waiver would be 180 days, followed by an extension of 90 days. Announcing the new visa-free program, the Qatar government said that the visa exemption program will make Qatar the most open country in the entire Gulf region. "The waiver will be valid for 30 days from the date of issuance and entitle its holder to spend up to 30 days in Qatar, during either a single trip or on multiple trips". People from 80 countries who are covered under the visa-free program will only be required to show their valid passport to gain entry to Qatar.
Doha aims to hold an edge over its Middle-Eastern neighbours in their bid to expand the tourism sector.
In November 2016, Qatar introduced a free transit visa, which allows passengers of all nationalities transiting in Qatar for a minimum of five hours to stay in Qatar for up to 96 hours.
In May 2017, QTA and Qatar Airways launched +Qatar a package that included a free night's stay in a 5- or 4- star hotel in Doha, alongside a complimentary transit visa.