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Brian Candy

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For a truly personal experience in Qatar, I am now offering my services on an hourly basis.

I am a fully licenced tour guide, licenced by QNTC (Qatar National Tourism Council). And also an Honorary Cultural Ambassador for QM (Qatar Museums)

I have lived in Qatar for over 10 years, and I am absolutely passionate about the country.

You can use me for almost anything during your visit to Qatar. Including, but not limited to:-

  • Meet and Greet at Hamad International Airport
  • Meet and greet at sea port
  • Visit Itinerary Management for Business or Personal (hotel bookings, transport, arranging appointments)
  • All types of guiding – City Tour Guide, Cultural Tour Guide, Photography Tour Guide
  • Business consultation
  • Personal Assistant on call

Cost per hour QR 200 (minimum 2 hours) approximately USD 55/EUR 50/GBP 44 at time of writing. Payment in cash only but can be in any currency.

Call or message me on +974 704 54321 with your requirements

Instead of choosing souvenirs or gifts from Qatar, which are made errrr…. elsewhere in Asia. How about selecting something truly made in Qatar, and to your own special order. The Dromedary Club located on the Salwa & C Ring Road Intersection (known locally as Ramada Signal) will produce a wallet, purse, bag…. well you get the idea. Anything leather. And they can make it out of camel or horse leather for you.

Dromedary Leather
Dromedary Leather
Qatar Quick visited Dromedary Club and made a video of a Tri Fold Wallet being made

It’s not while you wait, as there is an order book. But you can watch items being made, and if you want to, you can arrange to visit while your order is being made. Just be aware you need to think about ordering your gift/souvenir a little in advance. Perhaps even ordering before arriving in Qatar.

Contact Dromedary Club

team@thedromedaryclub.com
+974 7470 5000

Dromedary Leather Coffee Shop
Dromedary Leather Coffee Shop

And you can enjoy an amazing coffee when you visit. With coffee beans roasted right there on site. And you may as well have a nice slice of cake to go with that.

Dromedary Leather Barber Shop
Dromedary Leather Barber Shop

You can even visit the instore Barber Shop for a haircut and enjoy a complimentary coffee of your choice while your barnet gets serviced.

Back in March I was privileged to have a tour of the top of Burj Doha. The tower was built for H.E. Sheikh Saoud Bin Mohamed Bin Ali Al-Thani and was completed in 2012. Deigned by Jean Nouvel the tower is one of the many iconic buildings to be found in Qatar’s West Bay area.

Unfortunately in 2014 Sheikh Saoud passed away at the young age of 48. And work inside the top of Burj Doha stopped. Thus in March 2019 it looks the same as it did back in November 2014.

A view inside the top of Burj Doha in 2019

The private area which includes a swimming pool is accessible only by a private express elevator direct from the ground with no stops. The image below shows a model of how things could have looked. Featuring the display of art and a a library.

Model of how Burj Doha could have looked
A walk around the catwalk at the top of Burj Doha

For any Christians visiting Qatar, that would like to attend a church service. You can pop along to the Religious Complex located in Abu Hamour. Taxi drivers will know how to get you there no problem. But here is a map just in case.

Map of the Religious Complex

You need to be aware that the religious day in the Gulf Region is on a Friday not a Sunday. Although most churches offer a Sunday evening service, Friday is the day most people are not in work. And thus the main services are on a Friday.

Priest walking down church isle holding cross
Church of the Epiphany – Anglican Center – Qatar

For more information please click on one of the links below

The Church of the Epiphany (Anglican)

Our Lady of the Rosary (Catholic)

Getting to the Relegiouse Complex by train
An image of the Religious Complex car park and churches
The Religious Complex in Abu Hamour, Doha, Qatar

It is my absolute belief that Hameed Hamad Taryam Store located in Dar Al Salam Mall, Abu Hamour. Is almost certainly the cheapest place to buy perfume and Cologne in Qatar. And the savings are not small savings. If you are looking to purchase cologne as gifts, or even for yourself of course. It is well worth a taxi ride to Dar Al Salam Mall to get what you need there.

The Hameed Hamad Taryam Store located in Dar Al Salam Mall, Abu Hamour, Doha
Hameed Hamad Taryam Store located in Dar Al Salam Mall, Abu Hamour, Doha
An image of Davidoff Cool Water in packaging
Davidoff Cool Water on display in Lulu Supermarket

Last week I spotted Davidoff Cool Water in Lulu Supermarket for only QR 99 (GBP 21.41 – USD 27.19). Which I thought was a complete bargain. It normally retails at QR 129 (GBP 27.90 – USD 35.43) so I bought a bottle there and then as I hadn’t had time to get over to Dar Al Salam Mall, which is where I usually buy my smellies. I was very pleased with the saving until the next day. Having been nowhere near Dar Al Salam Mall for months, the very next day I found myself driving past it. So I popped in. Went to the 1st floor and headed for Hameed Hamad Taryam. Damn it!! Same bottle of Davidoff Cool Water purchased in Lulu was only QR 80 (GBP 17.30 – USD 21.97) there.

The more expensive smellies that I treat myself to much less often. Are usually 40 to 50% cheaper in Hameed Hamad Taryam. I strongly recommend a visit. And no I am not sponsored by them in any way. And have had no freebies off of them. Just good service and brilliant prices.

The Hameed Hamad Taryam Store located in Dar Al Salam Mall, Abu Hamour, Doha
Hameed Hamad Taryam Store located in Dar Al Salam Mall, Abu Hamour, Doha. Always very busy

Brilliant news, the Qatar Metro has launched and is running. But what does this mean for visitors? Well the first thing I must point out is that for the moment only the Red Line is operating, and it’s in ‘Preview Mode’ with reduced days/hours and stations. The service is currently operating Saturday to Thursday, 6am until 11pm, Fridays operate from 2pm until 11pm. And there are 5 stations that although not open yet, will be in the near future.

A Summer 2019 Metro Map with most of the Red Line Stations operating
Summer 2019 Metro Map with most of the Red Line Stations operating

How to Use the Metro Red Line for Visitors

You can buy a reusable or single use tickets at any of the stations. There are plenty of really helpful staff around to ensure you don’t have any problem doing this.

Metro Rail Pricing
Metro Rail Pricing

Please see the Metro website for more information: https://www.qr.com.qa/static-content?code=AboutTravelCards

Southern stations are not so interesting for visitors

You can split the Red Line into North and South with Msheireb Station in the middle. Msheireb is the central and main station servicing all lines (when they open). To the south of Msheireb are: Doha Jadeda, Umm Ghuwailina, Matar Qadeem, Oqba Ibn Naif, Free Zone and Ras Bu Fontas. Terminating at Al Wakra. All of these stations seem to be orientated towards commuters as their locations and shuttle bus services focus on residential and work locations rather than places of interest.

However I do recommend riding between Oqba Ibn Naif and Wakrah because you switch from underground to over ground rail, and it’s well worth the views. Watch the video below:-

Msheireb and to the North

It’s the stations to the North of Msheireb that really have interest value for visitors to Qatar. And I must also stress that Msheireb station itself should be on your list of places to visit. So, I’m going to start here.

Msheireb Station

Within easy walking distance of Msheireb Station are Msheireb Downtown Doha and the Msheireb Museums . And as long as you don’t get lost, you may also like to walk around the old Doha areas adjacent before they get redeveloped as well. This will give you a feel for Doha in later decades.

Msheireb Station with Msheireb Development in background

And if you use the free shuttle bus (which runs every 12 minutes), you can take a short ride to the MUST SEE ‘Souq Waqif

Al Bidda Station

Al Bidda Park is really quiet something. It’s a large expanse of green grass, trees and leisure facilities overlooking Doha bay (Corniche). It’s free to enter and is just a beautiful place to chill, relax, BBQ (there are free BBQ stations), walk, run exercise…. Whatever you like to do in a park. And Al Bidda station has an entrance\exit that brings you up directly into it. You may consider visiting in the evening when it’s cooler especially during the summer.

Al Bidda Metro Station has three points of entry/exit. One on either side of Al Rayan Road, and one in Al Bidda Park. This is the Entrance within Al Bidda Park, which brings you right up into the park itself.

Al Corniche

The two main things accessible from Al Corniche Station are the General Post Office, and The Corniche. As a visitor I think you are most likely only going to visit the Corniche, but if you are into architecture or need to post a letter, then the GPO (General Post Office) is worthy of a quick walk.

Very close, and an easy walk to the GPO (General Post Office)

The Corniche is quite simply stunning. And is most definitely a Qatar MUST SEE. When you emerge from the station you will see two decorative above land tunnels. Take the one to the left and you will arrive at the GPO. Take the one directly in front of you and you will arrive on The Corniche.

When you exit Al Corniche Metro Station you will see two above land tunels. One takes you to the GPO, the other to the Corniche

When you cross the road (please be very careful doing this) on the Corniche you will find my favourite restaurant ‘The Al Morjan’. I strongly recommend sitting on the Al Morjan terrace and enjoying a delicious meal while taking in the breath-taking views of West Bay and the tranquillity of the sea.

Emerging from the Corniche Metro Station tunel onto the Corniche

West Bay Station

Located within West Bay, this station is very useful for getting to Ezdan Hotel. And could be used for for visiting Qatar Sports Club which is within walking distance (about 10 mins walk). Other than that it’s commuters who would get most use out of this station. As it’s perfect for several large office towers and complexes. But not much to see as a visitor unless you like walking a lot.

West Bay Metro Station. Good for Ezdan Hotel and offices.

DECC

DECC stands for Doha Exhibition and Conference Centre. And the station is right outside the entrance to the DECC. The station is in very easy walking distance to one of Qatar’s major malls ‘City Centre Mall’ as well the Gate Mall and numerous hotels and office buildings (for which there is a free shuttle bus). If you are not visiting an exhibition or conference, then a visit to ‘City Centre Mall’ is well worth stopping at this station for some retail therapy anyway. The mall also has a very large supermarket if you are in need of supplies.

Doha Exhibition and Conference Centre. Also good for City Centre Mall

Al Qassar Station

Al Qassar station is within walking distance (hot walking distance) of the InterContinental and St. Regis hotels. It’s also right next to the Qatar International Exhibition Centre.

But for the moment its greatest value to visitors is for accessing Katara Cultural Village. Which is another one of Qatar’s MUST SEE locations. https://www.visitqatar.qa/discover/tourist-hotspots/katara-cultural-village.html

Sometime soon the Katara Metro Station will be open. But until it does Al Qassar serves the purpose very well. But be sure to use the underpass that will deliver you safely from Al Qassar station directly into Katara without having to cross a major road.

The two types of Standard Class disposable tickets are; ‘Single Use’ which costs QR 2 (GBP 43p, USD 54 cents) and will take you from any station to any station (but not back again). And ‘Day Pass’ that will allow you to ride all day long (within a calendar day) getting on and off wherever you like as many times as you like for QR 6 (GBP £1.29, USD $1.64). Both can be bought from machines located within the stations using cash (QAR only I’m afraid) or card. Help is available, you will not have a problem.

A Rechargeable Standard Class Travel Card costs QR 10 and you can add as much credit to that as you like. It will then deduct QR 2 for each journey you make. However, the maximum it will debit per day is QR 6. After QR 6 you ride for free within the same day.

Travelling in style with ‘goldclub’

If you want to ride in the Gold Class carriage, your going to need a ‘goldclub’ card. And that will cost you QR 10 (GBP £2.15, USD $2.74) per journey. However if you are using a rechargeable ‘goldclub’ card which costs QR 100 (GBP £21.58, USD $27.47) to buy (before you add credit), or a ‘Gold Day Pass’ which costs QR 30 (GBP £6.47, USD $8.24) you can ride all day and pay only a maximum of QR 30.

Gold Class cards are also available within the stations, and in fact there are special Gold Class offices, so you even get special treatment buying your cards.

Please see the Metro website for more information: https://www.qr.com.qa/static-content?code=AboutTravelCards

A very affordable and convenient way to sightsee in Doha, is to jump on a number 777 bus. It doesn’t have too many stops and travels from Doha International Airport, along the Corniche, through West Bay and on to the Pearl. The route takes in some of the must see sights of Doha.

The bus stop in front of City Center Mall for route 777
The bus stop in front of City Center Mall for route 777

The 777 route is circular, so it will bring you back to wherever yo get on. Unless you get off at any of its interesting stops. And buses run at a frequency of 20 minutes. So you never have long to wait for one to come along if you do get off.

You can buy a Karwa Smartcard on the bus. But they only accept local currency. And they are an absolute bargain at just QR 10. Even better is the fact that you can use them for up to two rides. So if you do get off. You can get back on and ride on the same ticket again. But you can only do that once. Or you will need to buy another ticket.

The service starts at 5am and ends at 11pm seven days a week. So there is plenty of opportunity to take a ride. Please take a look at our YouTube video below, to get a good idea of what you will see.

A quick video showing what you can expect along the route

You may also be interested in Catching a Bus from Doha International Airport Qatar

For more information on the Karwa public bus service, please visit:
Mowasalat-Karwa

If you are considering buying a new mobile phone in Qatar, below are some sample prices to guide you.


All mobile phones sold in Qatar are unlocked

In Qatar there are no monthly contract deals for mobile phones combined with usage. All mobile phones sold in Qatar are unlocked and ready for any service provider.

The prices given below are the cheapest found on the date shown along with the retailer offering these prices. Only the cheapest prices are shown. If a cheaper price is found then that price will be updated along with the retailer where it was found.

Best prices 3rd Feb 2019
Best prices 3rd Feb 2019

The Amazon Kindle Fire 7″ found in Carrefour City Center needs a special mention. QR 239 is a really great price. That’s the same as in the UK and you don’t have to pay a fortune to ship it to Qatar.

Amazon 7" Tablet
Amazon 7″ Tablet in Carrefour, City Center Mall
Mobile Phone Retail Display

Most visitors arriving at Hamad International Airport will just want to jump into a taxi and quickly get to where they are going. But if you are not too tired, can easily handle your luggage and have a little more time on your hands. You can elect to take a bus for a fraction of the cost. Getting around Qatar can be very affordable using the Karwa bus service.

Bus tickets cost between QAR 2.50 and QAR 7.00 but can only be paid for by cash (local cash). Single journey tickets can be bought on the bus.

You can also buy Smart Cards at a machine located in the Bus Terminal at Hamad International Airport. The machine accepts local currency or a credit card.

KARWA SMART CARD

Public transport smart cards are needed to ride Karwa public bus. Top-up amount in multiples of Qr.10. Buy and top-up Karwa smart card at ticket vending machines at Hamad International Airport, Doha Bus Station, The Pearl Qatar and Qatar Mall, also partner merchants.

Three types of Karwa smart card:

  • Classic Card, (Cost: QR.30): Rechargeable card for long term.
  • Limited Card, 24hr (Cost: QR.10): Good for two journeys within 24-hrs of purchase.
  • Unlimited Card, 24hr (Cost: QR.20): Good for unlimited journeys within 24-hrs of purchase.
Sample Exchange Rates0.210.270.2414.44
QRGBPUSDEURPHP
Limited Card, 24hr102.082.752.41144
Unlimited Card, 24hr204.165.494.82289
Information on Karwa Bus Smart Card Machine

For more information and to check the information being given in this article is still up to date and correct, please go to www.mowasalat.com or call Qatar (+974) 443 66 053

Routes and time

Public Bus Routes from Hamad International Airport
Bus No. 777
Bus No. 777 runs from 5am until 11pm every day
Bus No. 109 runs from 4:33am until 10:50pm every day
Bus No. 737
Bus No. 737 operates 24hrs a day
Bus No. 727
Bus No. 727 runs from 4:10am until 10:10pm
Bus No. 747
Bus No. 747 runs from 4:50am until 11:50pm
DOH Airport Bus Terminal
DOH Airport Bus Terminal

It’s easy to get FREE WiFi on Arrival at DOH

When you arrive in HIA (Hamad International Airport) Qatar or DOH as it will appear on your ticket, you can get access to the airports free WiFi. After disembarking from your aircraft simply turn on your phone and connect to #HIAQatar Complimentary

Select #HIAQatar Complimentary from available Wi-Fi to sign into the FREE HIA Wi-Fi
Select #HIAQatar Complimentary from available Wi-Fi

After connecting to #HIAQatar Complimentary you should see the screen below.

Connect using your Qatar Airways QR Booking Code found on your ticket or by receiving a code via SMS

There are two ways to get free internet at HIA, if you flew with Qatar Airways you should select [Connect using QR booking]. You will find your QR booking code on your ticket. If you arrived with any other airline you need to select [Connect using SMS]. If you select [Connect using SMS] you will need to enter the phone number of your mobile.

Select the country your SIM is registered in and enter your mobile phone number
Select the country your SIM is registered in and enter your mobile phone number

WARNING: The only disadvantage of using the [Connect using SMS] option is that you must have roaming enabled on your phone to receive the SMS Access Code if you are not using a Qatari SIM. If you are enabling roaming on your phone you may want to ensure that data roaming is turned off to avoid incurring expensive data roaming charges. Make sure you turn off data roaming before turning off your phone during takeoff.

Once you receive your Wi-Fi Access code, you simply enter it and your free WiFi will begin. Then you can turn off all roaming on your phone if you need to.

Enter the code sent to you via SMS
Enter the code sent to you via SMS

Now you can use the free WiFi to chat with whoever is meeting you on the other side in arrivals, and let everyone back home know you have arrived safely.

Want to know more about the prices of Fast Food in Qatar? Here is a price guide for what to expect to find in food courts across Qatar. This section will be updated as often as possible, but please treat it as example prices only. Also please be aware that exchange rates change much faster than this price guide can be updated.

McDonald’s Prices

McDonald's Qatar Menu Board January 2019
McDonald’s Qatar Menu Board January 2019
Sample Exchange Rates0.210.270.2414.44
QRGBPUSDEURPHP
Big Mac Meal193.955.224.58274
Big Tasty Meal214.375.775.06303
Quarter Pounder with Cheese Meal204.165.494.82289
McRoyale Meal204.165.494.82289
Chicken Mac Meal204.165.494.82289
McChicken Meal (Original)193.955.224.58274
McChicken Meal (Spicy)204.165.494.82289
McArabia Chicken Meal204.165.494.82289
Grand Chicken Meal (Spicy)244.996.595.78347
Grand Chicken Meal (Special)234.796.325.54332
Chicken McNuggets Meal (9 pcs)204.165.494.82289

Link to McDonald’s Qatar Home Delivery menu click HERE

Burger King Prices

Burger King Qatar Menu Board January 2019
Burger King Qatar Menu Board January 2019
Sample Exchange Rates0.210.270.2414.44
QRGBPUSDEURPHP
Whopper Meal204.165.494.82289
Double  Whopper Meal244.996.595.78347
Triple Whopper Meal265.417.146.27375
Big King XXL Meal244.996.595.78347
Chicken Whopper Meal234.796.325.54332
Chicken Royale Meal244.996.595.78347
King Chicken Fillet Meal244.996.595.78347
Chicken Steakhouse Meal234.796.325.54332
Chicken Crisp Meal173.544.674.10245
Chicken Tenders Meal (10 pcs)193.955.224.58274

Link to Burger King home delivery menu click HERE

KFC Prices

KFC Qatar Menu Board January 2019
KFC Qatar Menu Board January 2019
Sample Exchange Rates0.210.270.2414.44
QRGBPUSDEURPHP
Dinner Meal234.796.325.54332
Crispy Strips Meal234.796.325.54332
Mighty Bucket Meal275.627.426.51390

Link to KFC home delivery prices click HERE

Jollibee Qatar Menu Board January 2019
Jollibee Qatar Menu Board January 2019