From February 1, 2023, travelers must present local health insurance
From February 1st, all foreign tourists will need local health insurance to enter Qatar. Information about this was received on February 1 by Russian tour operators from their host companies in Qatar. Qatari partners, citing the decision of the Ministry of Health of Qatar, told tour operators the following:
“From February 1, 2023, all tourists coming to Qatar must be insured with a health insurance policy issued by health insurance companies registered with the Qatar Ministry of Health (MOPH Qatar). Insurance is issued for 30 days, regardless of the duration of the holiday. The cost of insurance is 50 Qatari rials (960 rubles). It only covers emergency services and accidents. The availability of insurance will be checked when crossing the border at the airport,” the Qatari host companies said in a message to Russian tour operators.
Host companies recommend purchasing insurance in advance to avoid delays upon arrival in Qatar. It is reported that tourists can buy the necessary insurance online (on the website of the Qatar Ministry of Health). Also, according to reports, insurance can be purchased upon arrival at Hamad International Airport in Doha.
Thus, in connection with the innovation, organized tourists from Russia will have to pay for two insurances at once. Russian, which is already included in the tour package, and Qatari. But tour operators see the main difficulty of the innovation for Russians in the way they purchase Qatari insurance.
“The problem is that Russians will not be able to buy insurance online, because it needs to be paid with a card of international payment systems. Buying insurance from a Qatari insurance company through us, a tour operator, is also not yet possible. Because our receiving company says they are “not authorized to sell insurance.” We also cannot conclude a contract with the Qatari insurance company ourselves. It remains to be hoped that insurance can be bought upon arrival and its availability will not become a condition for boarding a flight to Qatar. Now all the nuances are being clarified by Qatar Tourism. We hope that a way out will be found, ”said a representative of the tour operator working in the direction.
For the time being, in the absence of certainty, the situation, according to experts, is developing for Russians who are going to Qatar, not in the most pleasant way.
“Today our tourists were put on a flight to Qatar. But what will happen tomorrow, we do not know. But it is known that tourists from the UAE, who were going to fly to Qatar today, were not allowed on a regular flight due to lack of insurance. This is strange, because if it can be purchased upon arrival, why check it before departure,” said the representative of the tour operator.
Tour operators are waiting for an early clarification from Qatar Tourism.