Ian Edelman in Doha

Expat exploits in Qatar

Fully comprehensive

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A few days ago I received an SMS reminder that my car insurance was due for renewal, which also signalled it was time for the annual re-registration of my car. That meant two tasks… first renew the car insurance, which I would need to have been done prior to vehicle registration, as they would need to see insurance covering the next twelve months before they would re-register.

The first visit to the insurance company after work proved fruitless, as they closed at 3pm and the earliest I could get there was just after 3pm. So it was back there at 7am when they opened yesterday morning. The process only took 10 minutes but as the clerk didn’t arrive until 7.20am I was there a full half-hour.

At 8.30am I received a phone call from them telling me that they’d not given me all the documents… so another 7am visit was necessary today, but at least this time she was already there, and I guess I should be thankful they told me about the missing documents.

After work I went to the Traffic Department, a 15 minute drive away. I knew the drill from last year… collect the deli ticket from the circular counter in the middle of the large hall and head to the numbered counter. I went up to the two uniformed men and informed them that I was there to register my car. The guy on the right looked up…”Sorry they are closed for three days”, stood up and drifted off.  OK I thought, this is Qatar, these sort  of things happen. While I was deciding that I would to go home and come back in four days time the other fellow handed me a ticket. “He’s just joking”.

I headed off to counter A67. I handed the old registration card to the veiled lady behind the counter together with the new insurance documents. “You have a traffic violation” she said. Apparently I had been caught by a speed camera on the Corniche at 6am on Saturday 4 October. You maybe wondering what I was doing out that early in the morning. October was still very hot, but at that time before the sun was up the temperature was pleasant enough for an hour’s walk.

I paid the 500QR fine and the 100QR registration fee. The new card was printed and given to me along with the receipt for my speeding ticket.

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