Why on earth are there too few taxis in Doha?

Taxi in Doha=Karwa. That’s the brand name of public transport in the city.

You are the luckiest person in the world if you can find a Karwa in Doha. My colleague and I, currently on business in the city, got grilled in the sun several times over the past 48 hours waiting for and even chasing after Karwa taxis.

We tried to get a taxi from the front of the Qatar National Museum today. No way.. We walked and walked until we reached Souq Waqif (which is an amazing place, by the way) to get a ride (and we only got it after literally chasing after it).

By now, me and my Nokia N95 GPS know the city better than the Karwa taxi drivers. The majority of them are amazingly clueless about addresses!

And we had another taxi saga yesterday. I called for a taxi from my Jordanian mobile only to be told by the Karwa call center that they can only dispatch taxis to callers from Qatari telephones. Come on! Would I place an international call as a prank??

We dragged ourselves back to the office and called from a landline, just to be told that the earliest time we could get a taxi was after 90 MINUTES..


6 Responses to “Why on earth are there too few taxis in Doha?”

  1. Qwaider قويدر Says:

    That’s one of the amazing things about Amman, and Jordan in general. Taxis are everywhere!

    I guess, car rental is out of the question for you in Qatar? I think you might consider it … Just a suggestion

  2. Hussein Says:

    5 Golden Tips to have a Taxi in Doha:


    don’t think ever to have a taxi between 12:30 PM and 3:45 PM, this is the hibernate time of the whole city!


    don’t stand ever in a highway or main road or on roundabout, because they won’t saw you.


    find any traffic light in any street, and cross the road running to the taxi then open the door quickly and show him some money, it gonna work! (guaranteed)


    find some Indian or Bengali restaurant (juice stall, as they call it) you will find on front of it some Karwa taxis, go inside and ask for the drivers! (you may have to wait for more than 1 hour till he finish his launch)


    have an umbrella and air condition plugged on your head, because you gonna practice walking several times per day.


    or rent a private car! :)

  3. EXzombie Says:

    well, I faced the same problem when I was there too, but it was easy, have a local line even if you are stying for a day, it’s cheap, and call the taxis prior to your departure….

    the thing is taxis in the Gulf is seldomly used cause every one had a car…..

    and about Amman taxis, although you cam see them every where nowdays you can ait for an hour before getting one of them to petty you enough to stop for you, and that’s where I’m living (JU northern gate street)....

  4. azmoaore Says:

    Hi, I’ve been to qatar and it feels like they have few “karwa” for the whole city. The amazing thing is when i was there, I was picked up 3 times by the same guy within a 4 weeks time, and the last time he said to me “where do u want to go sir? home or Office?”


  5. Mediks Says:

    KARWA TAXI…. oh my, this is the worst taxi i i’ve ever seen, im here in Doha right now, and ‘till these days, KARWA taxi’s are still the same, when im still new here in doha about 6 months ago, I really don’t know that these taxi’s are “weird”, funny but its true, you will ride at these taxis and you will be the one to guide the drivers the way to your destination.. arrrghhh!! (imagine, im new in doha and I only have the address written on my wallet, and I will be the one to guide the taxi driver… oh my God!!)

  6. Hazem Soliman Says:

    It is even worse if you tried there crappy call center 0.5 an hour waiting on the phone and you should reserve the taxi one day before and but at least 15 min margin of delay

    What a service…...............:((((

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