Qatar ministry to begin accepting camping permit applications

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Vedran Strelar

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Winter camping season in Qatar starts on Nov. 1 and applicants can begin turning in permit applications tomorrow, Oct 2.

The Ministry of Municipality and Environment (MME) said applications can be filled out until Nov. 17 online or at its various registration centers, including in Doha, Al Rayyan, Al Mazrouah and Al Wakrah.

Qatar enforces strict rules to protect the environment during camping season, and only Qataris who are 25 years and older may apply for a permit.

They are required to pay a QR10,000 deposit that could be forfeited if campers refuse to allow inspectors access to their camps.

Increasing popularity

Last year, registrations jumped more than 30 percent to 2,058 licenses, the MME said.

At the time, a representative explained that the 2015-2016 season was a particularly popular one for desert camping due to boredom with city life.

“Whenever men come into my office for permits, I always ask them why and all of them say they got bored (with) going to shopping malls and restaurants,” Maryam Al-Bader, an MME secretary said. “They want to do something different. I hear the same answers from women too.”

Qatar’s desert will soon be home to football fans, too. Plans are in the works to house some 2022 World Cup visitors in camps during the tournament.

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