It’s a dream of many to visit, live or work in Qatar but you can plan things in a better way if you know the actual cost of living in Qatar. It can cost you a lot if you want to have breakfast in the downtown of the city and dinner on a magnificent cruise. It really depends on the pocket and lifestyle but it’s not that expensive what most of the people think.
The only thing which is expensive is accommodation, house rent prices are higher than most of the Gulf countries. If you want to live a luxury life in Qatar then it is necessary for you to have a good source of income or a good salary but a semi-luxury life would not cost you very much. Let me give you a brief overview of the cost of living in Qatar.
Cost of Food & Dining
It’s a country which imports most of the products from the outside like, fruits, vegetables, meat etc and that is the reason you will find these items expensive but dairy products like milk, yogurt, cheese and butter are really cheap because it’s being produced locally. There is not much difference in general grocery items but the prices are a bit higher than Asian countries and cheaper than European countries.
If you love eating out then local restaurants are the best option which offers quality food at cheaper price but it would cost you more if you prefer eating at international hotels and restaurants. A single expat with a semi-luxury lifestyle can spend around 850 to 1500 QAR per month. In the food court of shopping malls, a single meal can cost you around 25 to 50 QAR depends on what standard of restaurant you choose.
Cost of Accommodation
It depends on the type of house or apartment you want to live in and it also depends on the area and location you choose but property prices in Qatar are higher than in other countries. If you want to live or work here for a short period of time then bed space would be the best option but if you are planning to stay here for a long time with your family then you will have to rent an apartment.
If you want to rent an apartment in Doha’s famous international standard of the community then a studio apartment will cost you around 3,000 to 5,000 QAR monthly and 2 bedrooms apartment can cost you around 8500 to 12000 QAR. You can definitely find cheaper ones in other areas but family villas of good condition and area can cost you a little bit more.
House rents do not include utility bills that mean you have to pay separately for it for a two-bedroom apartment bill for electricity can cost you almost 300 to 400 QAR per month based on how much you use it this can be less or higher depends on the consumption of it. while water bills will cost you around 150 to 200 per month.
Cost of Transportation
Qatar’s public transport system mainly depends on buses and private taxis and it’s comparatively less expensive than other countries. If you can not afford to have your own car then you can use public transport like buses which is just fine and cheaper solution but you can also ride through a taxi which would not cost you a lot because of the low oil prices and Qatar is one of the top oil-producing countries.
Traveling through public bus would cost you about 3 QAR for one way and 6 QAR for two way. It’s always recommended to get the monthly pass for 100 QAR in which you can travel as much as you want. Taxi fare starts with 10 QAR and it will cost you 1.90 QAR per kilometer.
Cost of Education
Qatar offers free education to its nationals but you will have to pay the school fees for your children. If you are planning to educate your kids in Qatar then a major chunk of your income will go into the school fees. The early childhood education system of Qatar is the best when it comes to the quality of education because of almost all international school systems has its campuses in Doha and the rest of Qatar.
A primary international school can cost you around 36,000 QAR yearly which would be 3000 monthly for one kid and extra co-curricular activities and books can cost you more.
Cost of Healthcare & Insurance
Qatar’s public healthcare system is run by the Hamad Medical Corporation. It’s a non-profit organization that has a network of hospitals and clinics all over the country that provides free treatment to locals but as a foreigner, you will have to apply for the healthcare card in order to get the advantage of the public healthcare system.
If you are coming in Qatar on a work visa then you should ask your sponsor/employer to include private health insurance in the employment contract. However, it’s law in the country that makes sure the employers of an employee apply for the health insurance card as they apply for the visa of their employee.
A comprehensive health insurance policy will cost you from 2000 QAR to 3000 QAR yearly. Every expat and resident of Qatar must have the insurance card to consult the doctors at the hospitals which can save a lot of money health-related consultations, diagnoses, and medications.