Pleasant weather prompts Qataris to spend Eid holidays at home

November 9, 2010

Qatar’s expected pleasant weather next week has prompted many nationals and residents to spend their Eid holidays in the country, a survey has indicated.

Around 72 per cent of the respondents, mainly Qataris, say they don’t want to travel abroad and that they prefer to spend their holidays at home.

The results clash with the general belief that there is an inevitable exodus of people from Qatar during major festival periods. Only 28 per cent said they would travel during the holidays, and this was for vacation or religious reasons, according to the survey, which was conducted by a local daily.

Among a random sample of 50 men and women, 30 per cent of those who prefer to stay at home said their main destination would be the major shopping malls, which offer entertainment facilities, Qatari daily The Peninsula reported on Monday.

Local tourist resorts ranked second, as 19 per cent of the people surveyed said the cooler temperatures allowed for relaxation and were perfect for breaks away from the cities.

Souq Waqif topped the preference list of 13 per cent of the interviewees who said they liked the diversity of the shops and cafés there. For 12 per cent of the respondents, a stay in a hotel is the best way to enjoy the holidays, and Doha Corniche is the top place for 11 per cent.

Restaurants and public cafés were favoured by 10 per cent, while five per cent said they plan to spend the holiday visiting relatives.

People working in the public sector and students are set to enjoy a 10 day-holiday, from November 11 to November 21.

Qatari authorities traditionally grant a three-day holiday on Eid Al Adha, to be celebrated on November 16, and one day before it, to mark the pilgrims’ gathering around Mount Arafat near Makkah, an important ritual of the annual Haj pilgrimage.

The holidays were initially scheduled to start on November 15, but since there is only one working day, Sunday, between the weekend and the Eid holidays, the authorities will be granting it as a vacation as well, local papers reported. The banking sector will, however, be given only four days off.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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