Hiring a car and driving in Qatar is generally safe and well-regulated. The road infrastructure in the capital city of Doha and major urban areas is modern and well-maintained. However, it's important to be aware of local traffic rules and customs before driving in the country. Here are some key points to consider:
1. Vehicle Choice: The best type of vehicle to hire in Qatar depends on your needs and preferences. For city driving and short trips, a compact car should suffice. If you plan to explore the desert or venture into more remote areas, consider renting a 4x4 SUV, as it provides better off-road capabilities.
2. Road Safety: Qatar has strict traffic laws and regulations that are enforced rigorously. Seat belts are mandatory, and the use of mobile phones while driving is prohibited. Speed limits are strictly enforced, and there are frequent speed cameras on major roads. It's essential to obey traffic rules and drive defensively.
3. Places of Interest: Qatar offers a variety of attractions, including the modern skyline of Doha, traditional souqs (markets), cultural sites like the Museum of Islamic Art, and natural wonders like the Singing Sand Dunes in the desert. The Pearl-Qatar, Katara Cultural Village, and Souq Waqif are also popular destinations.
4. Airport Distance: Hamad International Airport (DOH) in Doha, the country's main international airport, is located approximately 10 miles (16 kilometers) southeast of central Doha. The distance to your specific destination in the city will vary depending on traffic conditions.
5. Desert Adventures: If you plan to explore the desert, especially during the warmer months, make sure your vehicle is well-equipped for the conditions. Carry plenty of water, a first-aid kit, and ensure your vehicle has proper off-road capabilities.
6. Local Customs: Qatar follows conservative Islamic customs, so it's advisable to dress modestly and be respectful of local traditions. Avoid public displays of affection, especially during Ramadan.
7. Navigation: GPS navigation systems and smartphone apps like Google Maps are useful for navigating Qatar's road networks. Signs are generally in both Arabic and English.
While driving in Qatar can be convenient and safe, it's essential to stay informed about local regulations and exercise caution on the road. Always check with your car rental provider for any specific rules or advice regarding driving in Qatar.
*average daily rates based on 7 day rental, search for today's best prices.