Shopping centers that charge for parking around Qatar must now comply with the government’s new fee restrictions or face penalties.
In a statement, the Ministry of Economy and Commerce (MEC) reminded malls and other businesses this week that the grace period to adhere to the new structure has ended.
The MEC announced a cap on parking and valet services in April, as part of efforts to “protect the rights of the community.” The actual fees were reported last month.
The ministry said at the time that drivers would also be given a half hour to hunt for a parking space and won’t be charged if they leave before that.
Lot operators are limited to charging customers QR2 an hour for each of the first two hours.
That climbs to QR3 each for the third and fourth hour, and QR5 for every subsequent hour. The maximum a person can be charged is QR70 a day.
Additionally, there is a cap of QR30 for regular valet parking and QR60 for VIP valet parking.
So far, City Center, Ezdan, Villaggio, Lagoona, Landmark, Dar Al Salam, The Gate and Gulf malls have all complied with the new rules.
Souq Waqif, the Doha Golf Club, Ahli Hospital, the Pearl-Qatar and Katara Cultural Village have also fallen into line, the MEC said.
The rapid growth of Qatar’s population and the launch of construction projects that have taken over previously vacant lots has reduced the number of available spots for motorists to leave their vehicles.
There are currently only a handful of lots in Qatar that currently charge for parking, although that has started to change.
Several of the new lots that have opened in recent months, such as the Doha Exhibition and Conference Center as well as Sheraton Park, now require motorists to pay.