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I had lived in Doha, Qatar for 12 years and I can name few things I don’t like about the place.
Summer heat: The temperature can reach to a scorching 50 deg C or more. You wouldn’t want to spend time staying outside in the months of May up to October.
Government staffs: Somehow you expect government people to be accommodating and helpful. But this is not the case with Qatar government employees like the ones working for immigration, police dept, traffic dept, etc. Most do not even know how to speak basic English. They wouldn’t make that extra step in helping you on what you need.
Some places are not women-friendly. Try going to Souq Haraj on a Friday night. There are a lot of male bystanders who will take advantage of the crowded atmosphere. Women should avoid such places if they do not wish to get touched by perverts around.
Some items are so expensive. It is not practical to buy musical instruments and books, among others. You have the option of purchasing online but shipping the item to Qatar is also not affordable. Alcohol and pork products are so pricey and can only be purchased in one shop.
Discrimination against nationalities (especially against Asians). Westerns are treated higher compared to Asians. For instance, an American and Indian can both work in the same company and have the same position. But the American fellow will generally have a salary much more than that of the Asian guy. This discrimination became so common that people have learned to accept it already.
Traffic. People can easily buy cars since getting loans are not really difficult with Qatar banks. Also, the public transportation is not so developed yet. (However, train networks have started to operate in recent months.). Also, related to driving, traffic fines are out-of-this-world. Beating a red light is equivalent to a 6000 Qar or 1650 USD.
There are not much to visit and see. After visiting malls, parks, deserts and few attractions, that’s it. You could probably visit them all in half year of staying in Doha.
Being in the middle East and being the host of the region’s largest US military base, the peace situation can be very frightening especially when there are external tensions happening.
Dust: This problem is not only specific to Doha but also applicable to all other MidEast countries. I have learned to accept that my car will get so dusty just two days after washing. Sandstorms at certain time of the year are real nuisance. Rain won’t actually clean your car but would just make it muddy.
House rent: If you do not have your family in Doha, probably you would share rent with others in a flat. A room would typically cost 1500 qar to 2500 qar. Bedspace is of course cheaper but you would have to deal with living with another person(s). If you have your family with you, you would naturally get a flat which is at least 5000 qar.
Floods: There seem to be a sudden change in climate in the recent years. Previously, rain is expected to come only once or twice a year. But in the past 5 years, Doha experienced abnormally frequent rains in the cold season. The rainwater drainage system in Doha seems to be not designed for such frequent and heavier rains, causing flooding even in major roads and in residential areas.
One can enjoy living in this place if he just learn to accept things as they are. As an expat, Do not expect to live the same lifestyle you had in your home country.
The question deals with the negatives in Qatar. I would probably name more good things if the question had asked for it.
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