Work Permits for Qatar
A work permit for Qatar is formally known as a Work Residence Permit. There are a number of different types of visa but no matter the category, visas allow entry into the country and are exchanged for an employment-based residence permit once expats arrive in Qatar.
It’s impossible to get a work residence permit for Qatar without an employment contract and having a local employer to act as the expat's sponsor. Once a job is secured and the accompanying paperword is handled, however, the burden of applications and following up on progress falls to the employing sponsor.
Expats only have to provide the requested, notarised documentation, and must organise the additional logistics that come with relocation. Paperwork varies depending on the position the expat will be filling but the employer will usually advise them on what they specifically require.
Once the work entry visa has been approved, expats can travel to the country with their confirming documents and collect the actual visa at the Qatar airport.
After arriving, the residence permit application process begins immediately. This bit of bureaucracy is also managed by the employing sponsor. Expats only have to bring the requested paperwork overseas with them, and must go for a medical check-up and fingerprinting upon arrival.
To successfully receive the residence permit, expats cannot leave the country during the time in which their work entry visa is being converted. The processing period is roughly six weeks, but this can vary.
The holy month of Ramadan is a notoriously bad time to apply for work entry visas or permits, as most government offices operate during shorter working hours.
*Visa and work permit regulations are subject to change at short notice and expats should contact their respective embassy or consulate for the latest details.