Go beyond a simple search and read these important tips, gathered especially for attendees of WIS’19!

It wasn’t too long ago that we published 10 Travel Tips for Doha on the blog, but other questions, quandaries, queries, and conundrums have come up since then. From what to wear to the type of power socket, we are prepared for anything that comes up!

After consulting our partners, friends, and experts, we have gathered these useful tips and information for you ahead of the World Incubation Summit 2019. If there is something missing, please let us know and we will do our best to answer you right away. Keep in mind that this useful information is also available via the WIS’19 Event App, so be sure to download here and log in today!

  • Conference Venues

    The main conference venue is the Grand Hyatt Hotel Doha and the WIS’19 will use the main auditorium when gathering all attendees; the hall for lunch, exhibitions and networking activitieas; four smaller rooms for parallel panel discussions and workshops; the beach garden area for Sports and Wellness, and the Traditional Qatari Dinner. Again, this is where the event app is useful, so don’t forget to download it, log in, and check for information and updates from the WIS’19 organizers!

    There are some events that will take place outside the main conference venue, which are listed below:

  • Airport Transportation

    • Recommended: Taxi

      Karwa taxis offer convenient and flexible travel to and from Hamad International Airport. Attendees should look for the Taxi Pavilion, located to the left end of the Arrivals Hall at the airport. Follow the ‘Taxi’ sign at the Arrivals Hall or ask at an information desk or use the airport map to find your way.

      Please ensure you are carrying enough Qatari Riyals to pay for your trip as taxis only accept cash payments in local currency. ATMs are located near the taxi pavilion for your convenience. All taxis are metered and the minimum flag down fare at the airport starts at QAR 25 ($7 USD) and QAR 1.20 per kilometer between 05:00 a.m. and 09:00 p.m. and QAR 1.80 per kilometer between 09:00 p.m. and 05:00 a.m.

    • Recommended: Limo

      Alternatively, there are chauffeur-driven limousines by request, including luxury sedans and 7-passenger vans. Locate the Mowasalat Limousine kiosk located in the Arrivals Hall. You can pay in cash with Qatari Riyals at the end of the trip to the driver.

    • Not Recommended: Bus & Uber, except...

      There is public transport available via bus, but unfortunately, they do not stop close to the Grand Hyatt Hotel. The Metro Line is currently under construction and therefore unavailable.

      Uber is not a recommended service to take from the airport, as these drivers are not allowed to pick up passengers from that location. However, you can use UBER to conveniently get around the city – and for going TO the airport. Just download the app and you can request your ride.

  • Time Zone

    The local time is GMT/UCT + 3 hours. There is no adjustment for daylight savings time, so keep this in mind as the WIS’19 is after DST adjustments in other time zones have ended.

  • Climate

    Qatar has a desert climate with year-round sunshine, hot summers, and mild winters. Monthly temperatures in November range from 19°C to 30°C (66°F to 85°F). Rain is infrequent, falling in brief showers mainly in winter.

  • Business Hours

    The workweek runs from Sunday to Thursday, with most offices closing on Friday and Saturday. Government office working hours are from 07:00 to 14:00.

  • Currency

    The monetary unit of Qatar is the Riyal (abbreviated to QR or QAR). The exchange rate is pegged to the United States dollar and fixed at $1 = QR3.64. There are no foreign exchange controls. ATMs are plentiful, and most shops and restaurants accept major credit cards.

  • Customs Regulations

    Alcohol is available in hotels only and is not available in regular shops, restaurants, or bars. Don’t plan to BYOB after a stop in duty-free; you won’t be allowed and could get in trouble as imports of alcohol and narcotics are prohibited. The tobacco allowance is 400 cigarettes while personal items and gifts up to a maximum value of QAR 3,000 are allowed.

  • Religion

    Qatar is an Islamic country that is respectful of other religions, and Qatar’s cosmopolitan population supports many places of worship from Hindu temples to Christian churches. The timing of Islamic festivals and holidays depends on the lunar calendar, which moves approximately eleven days earlier each year.

  • WIS’19 Dress Code

    Reflect Your Respect on your visit to the Islamic country of Doha by adhering to the following dress codes for both men and women during your stay.

    • Women

      Women visiting Doha may dress freely, as there is no rule or law that enforces wearing a headscarf or Abaya for women in public or private areas.

      • During WIS’19

        Business casual attire is appropriate for all sessions and for the Traditional Qatari Dinner. Please remember to remain respectful of the Islamic culture. Elegant dress code is expected for the UBI Awards & Recognitions Gala, (no jeans, t-shirts or athletic shoes during this event).

      • Public Areas

        Dress modestly when in public areas around Doha including in shopping malls and at tourist-friendly places such as Souq Waqif. Make sure that your shoulders and knees are covered and clothes are not too revealing.

      • Private Areas

        Resorts and hotels are deemed as private properties, so you may wear what you like in those locations. Please check with your hotel or WIS’19 event staff if you are unsure about rules and regulations. Bars and nightclubs are located at 5-star hotels, where you may dress as you wish.

    • Men

      Men visiting Doha during WIS’19 may dress freely, there are no rules or laws restricting men’s attire in public or private areas.

      • During WIS’19

        Dress in business casual while remaining respectful to the culture. Please note that the Gala dinner enforces an elegant dress code, no jeans, t-shirts or athletic shoes.

      • Public Areas

        Dress modestly when in public areas around Doha including in shopping malls and at tourist-friendly places such as Souq Waqif. Make sure that your shoulders and knees are covered and clothes are not too revealing.

      • Private Areas

        Resorts and hotels are deemed as private properties, so you may wear what you like in those locations. Please check with your hotel or WIS’19 event staff if you are unsure about rules and regulations. Bars and nightclubs are located at 5-star hotels, where you may dress as you wish.

  • Power

    Standard voltage in Qatar is 240 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. The power plugs and sockets are of type D and G (same as the UK).

  • Important Telephone Numbers

    • Emergency: 999

    • Directory Assistance: 180

    • Hamad International Airport: +974 4010 6666

    • Qatar Tourism Call Centre: +974 4444 4106

  • Telecommunications

    The country code for Qatar is +974. Qatar has two telecom providers, Ooredoo and Vodafone, which offer pre-paid and post-paid mobile services. Attendees needing to purchase SIM cards and data plans may do so easily from the kiosks in the airport arrivals area.

  • Internet

    Wi-fi broadband hotspots are available across the country and are easily accessible at hotels and public parks. Many public places offer free Wi-Fi.

  • Safety

    Qatar is one of the safest cities in the world, ranking number 21 on this list of the world’s safest countries.

  • Language

    The official language is Arabic. English is widely spoken and understood, as is a range of other languages in large hotels and conference venues.

  • Disabled Visitors

    Leading hotels, airports, shopping malls, larger banks, and other new or recently-restored public buildings offer wheelchair access, disabled toilets and allocated parking, but visitors with special requirements are advised to check ahead about facilities at other locations.

  • Water

    Tap water is generally safe to drink in Doha and other urban areas.

  • Food

    Traditional Qatari food is quite varied. Locally caught fish is always plentiful. Over the years, local dishes have been influenced by the cuisine of the Indian Subcontinent, Iran, the Levant, and North Africa.

    Common Qatari main dishes include machboos, which is a stew of richly spiced rice with seafood or meat, mutton served with yogurt, ghuzi, a whole roast lamb on a bed of rice and nuts, or stuffed boiled sheep or goat served with seasoned rice.

    This centerpiece of the meal is generally accompanied by a variety of side dishes, including chicken, fish and vegetables and salad. Locally grown dates, fresh fruit, and desserts such as halwa or Umm Ali round off a typical Qatari meal. Souq Waqif and Katara are both highly recommended places to visit for tourists looking to experience Qatari food and Arabic coffee.

  • Medical

    There are no major health risks and no special inoculations required by visitors. The quality of healthcare is generally very high. There are many well-stocked pharmacies, with English speaking staff, throughout Doha city, including some which are open 24 hours.

  • Getting to Doha

    We hope that you have taken advantage of the discount code for Qatar Airways offered exclusively to WIS’19 attendees! Those of you who don’t book until the last minute - our travel partner, Qatar Airways, will spoil you for choice with round-trip flights from just about anywhere in the world. Attendees of WIS’19 are eligible for a special discount code to save up to 12%! See the WIS’19 website for details

    Did you know that there are other ways to save all year round? Enroll your business in the new rewards program designed for full flexibility on how you redeem your rewards. With Beyond Business by Qatar Airways, Qrewards can be used against the cost of any flight, at any time – no matter how close to the day of departure. Visit www.qatarairways.com/beyondbusiness to learn more.

    Make the most of your trip to WIS’19 - meet the people, try the food, see the sights, and enjoy your adventure in Doha! Remember that the WIS’19 event staff is always available for assistance and to make your trip to Doha an epic experience you won’t forget.