There are several key things to note when considering cars in Doha:
- The Land Cruiser is by far the most popular car among Qatari families
- People make very bad car “decorating” decisions in this city
- Supposedly the best deals of the year on new cars are during Ramadan
- Car dealerships are only open after 8pm during Ramadan
To expand on 1 and 2 – I have never seen so many Land Cruisers until I moved here. These SUVs dominate the roads and are a status symbol. You know a Land Cruiser has power on the road, and the driver likely has power in life. Unfortunately the owners almost always decide to get racing stripes or designs down the sides. These decent vehicles suddenly become very ugly. Another awkward decorating choice of many in Doha is carpeting the dashboard and back shelf area with fake shaggy fur. I have been told this is to prevent the bleaching affect of the sun; however, it is the worst possible car interior choice one could make.
I have been attempting to car shop the last few days. Several weeks ago I began the process by just looking around, but I knew that until I got a license I would not be searching seriously. Now I have a license and am ready to buy. I lucked out because dealers usually have great sales during Ramadan. I did not luck out because the dealers are only open late at night. When I have gone in search of a dealership I have found a closed door. Tomorrow night I will try again. Wish me luck.