Considering a road trip to Bahrain from Qatar? There are many details you need to be aware of regarding your journey, the procedure, the documents needed, and so much more.
As Qatar has no direct access or border to Bahrain, your journey to Bahrain will be via Saudi Arabia. You will first be required to cross the Abu Samra border from Qatar to Saudi Arabia, after which you will need to take the King Fahd Causeway, a 25 km bridge connecting Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to reach Bahrain.
The ILoveQatar.net (ILQ) team has put together all the information you need to know about travelling to Bahrain from Qatar by road to ensure you have an easy journey.
First things first, you will need to ensure you have your visas sorted ahead of your travel. You will require a visa to Saudi Arabia to cross the Abu Samra border from Qatar and a visa to Bahrain to enter Bahrain from Saudi Arabia.
Note: Qatari citizens do not require a visa to enter Bahrain or Saudi Arabia.
As a GCC resident, you will be eligible for a visa on arrival or apply for a tourist visa online. This is applicable for all profession categories except for the category of 'labourer'.
To apply for the e-visa, you may do so using the national e-visa portal. Before applying, you can also check your visa eligibility on the same platform.
You can also purchase the visa upon arrival at the Bahrain immigration office at the border.
GCC resident permit valid for 3 months.
Copy of hotel booking - if in case you are staying with friends or family, you can submit an ID copy of the host.
Note: When applying for the visa online, you will be asked to submit a copy of your air ticket - here, you can add a comment that you will be travelling by road; therefore, there will be no ticket copy to submit.
The e-visa will cost a total of QR 87 (BD 9) for two weeks, which includes an application fee of QR 38.63 (BD 4) and a visa fee of QR 48.28 (BD 5).
The application fee is to be paid at the time of visa application, and the visa fee can be paid upon approval of the submission.
Saudi Arabia visa
To apply for a visa to Saudi Arabia from Qatar, you can do so online via Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, or through the Tasheer visa centre located at Ezdan Mall, Gharaffa.
Note that although Saudi Arabia offers a transit visa, it is a visa that is valid only for 96 hours, and it only offers a single entry. Additionally, it can only be applied once in 3 months; therefore, applying for a regular tourist visa will be recommended.
Online e-visa (tourist visa) fees:
The e-visa will cost QR 290.59 (SAR 300) - excluding the medical insurance.
The price of medical insurance starts at QR 36.5 ($10); however, it may vary based on the insurance company chosen.
Tasheer e-visa (tourist visa) fees:
The visa fees are subjective to the visa type; however, a tourist visa is approximately QR 522 (inclusive of the visa cost, the service fees for Tasheer, the medical fees & Enjaz fees). If you are to avail of the lounge service at the visa centre, there will be an additional charge of QR 335.
Note: If you apply for your visa through the Tasheer visa centre, your biometrics will be done at the visa centre itself, and you will not be required to do so at the Abu Samra Border.
The visa fee breakdown is as follows:
MoFA Visa Fee (Tourism)
MoFA Enjaz Fee
MoFA Medical Fee (if applicable)
Service Fee - Regular appointment
Lounge Service Fee
Saudi Arabia medical insurance
Medical insurance is a mandatory requirement to enter Saudi Arabia; therefore, you will need to get medical insurance along with the visa. Typically, the price of medical insurance starts at QR 36.5 ($10); however, may vary based on the insurance company chosen.
If you are applying for the visa through the Tasheer visa centre, your medical insurance fee will be included as part of your total payable visa fee.
Bahrain medical insurance
Medical insurance is not a mandatory requirement to enter Bahrain.
Vehicle insurance is a mandatory requirement that must be availed for Saudi Arabia and Bahrain as you will require it to enter both countries. Moreover, as you will be travelling via the King Fahd Causeway, the Saudi Arabian vehicle insurance will cover you while you travel within the Saudi Arabia part of it, and the Bahraini vehicle insurance will cover you while you travel within the Bahraini section.
Saudi Arabia vehicle insurance
Vehicle insurance for Saudi Arabia can be purchased at the Abu Samra Border. The Abu Samra border is Qatar's land border that is located on Salwa Road. It serves as a direct entry point to Saudi Arabia by road.
You can also purchase this insurance online prior to your travel using the designated 'Najm Manafith' application - Android | iOS.
The price of the vehicle insurance starts at QR 116.48 (SAR 120) for 1 week.
The price of vehicle insurance varies based on the duration of stay and also on the type of vehicle, such as private, taxi, truck, motorcycle or bus.
Bahrain vehicle insurance
The Bahrain vehicle insurance can be purchased online as well. The cost of the insurance will vary from service provider, but one such service provider you can is United Insurance.
You will be able to purchase the vehicle insurance online at a starting cost of QR 26.08 (BD 2.7) for one week. You can also purchase this at the Bahrain entry point.
Journey & procedure
1. Entering Saudi Arabia from Qatar
To reach Bahrain, you will first exit Qatar and enter Saudi Arabia via the Abu Samra border.
When you reach the Abu Samra border, you will need to complete the documentation and procedures to enter Saudi Arabia.
Cross the first booth, which will be Qatar's immigration to exit Qatar, where you will be required to provide your personal documents to be validated.
After crossing the Abu Samra border, you will drive a distance, after which you will enter Saudi Arabia through the main entry point.
After crossing the entry point, you will continue driving straight until you see the Saudi Immigration/Passport control booth to your right. Here, your documents will be checked and validated once again.
Once you enter past the Saudi Immigration/Passport control booth, you will need to park your car and enter the building named 'Passports' to complete the biometrics procedure (fingerprints & eye scan) and capture your photo.
Note: There are segregated buildings for men (building 3) and women (building 2); also ensure that you are standing in the right queue, as there are separate queues for GCC citizens & other nationalities).
Upon completion of your biometrics procedure, your personal documents will be validated, and your visa documents will be checked by the immigration officers.
Once all personal documents are validated, and the biometrics procedure is done, you will have to proceed to the next stop, which is a small drive away, where your vehicle documents will be checked and validated. If you have not purchased your vehicle insurance, you will be able to at this point.
Note: you must hold on to your vehicle insurance receipt as you will need to show this during your return to Qatar.
Note: Payments made after crossing the Abu Samra border and entering Saudi Arabia can still be done using Qatari credit/debit cards or in Qatari Riyals.
2. Entering Bahrain after crossing Saudi Arabia
Once you enter Saudi Arabia, you will continue your journey and drive via Al Khobar to reach the King Fahd Causeway.
You will first approach the toll gate to enter the King Fahd Causeway, where you will have to make a payment to use the King Fahd Causeway.
King Fahd Causeway Fee - Starting at QR 24.27 (SAR 25 | BHD 2.5) for small vehicles.
Note: You will have to tap your credit or debit card to make a payment; cash payments are not possible. If you are a frequent traveller, you could get the re-chargeable King Fahd Causeway toll card.
After driving halfway, you will reach the exit point of Saudi Arabia.
You will then continue driving until you reach the Bahrain entry point, which is also known as 'Passport Island', where the Bahrain passport control/immigration office is.
At the Bahrain immigration office, you will have to provide your personal documents, such as your passport copy, GCC residency (Qatar ID) & visa documents.
Note: If you are to make any payments at the Bahrain Immigration stop, it will have to be in cash (Qatari Riyals are not accepted).
If you are to pay by card, you will be advised to drive to another building on the left to make your payment.
If this is your first entry to Bahrain, you will need to do biometrics; however, if you have entered Bahrain before, even via air, you will not be required to do biometrics.
Once your personal documents are validated, your passport will be stamped, and you will proceed to the next stop.
Your next stop is a drive away and will be a vehicle security check, where you will have to get out of your car and it will be physically examined.
Once this is done, you will proceed to the last stop, where you will have to provide your vehicle insurance documents.
After this point, you will enter Bahrain.
Exit Bahrain and return to Qatar via Saudi Arabia
When leaving from Bahrain, you will first approach the toll gate from the Bahrain side, which you will have to make a payment to access the King Fahd Causeway.
After continuing to drive, you will reach the middle of the bridge, which is where the Bahrain immigration/customs office will be - at this point, only your personal documents will be checked and validated.
Once you cross the Bahrain customs/immigration, you will have to stop for a vehicle check by Bahrain authorities, after which you will exit Bahrain and will continue to drive towards the Saudi Arabia border.
After crossing the Saudi Border, you will be stopped for a vehicle check. You will have to park your car in the dedicated area, open your trunk, and wait beside your vehicle until an officer examines your car.
Once the vehicle examination is done, you will continue on your journey to Saudi Arabia, from which you access the Abu Samra border and enter Qatar.
Travel experience tip: Look out for a view of the black camels when you are driving from Saudi Arabia to Bahrain.
Travel time: Your total journey time from Qatar to Bahrain via Saudi Arabia could take approximately 5 to 7 hours, subject to traffic and immigration procedure time.
A Woqod petrol station can be found approximately 1 km before the Abu Samra border. This is the last fuel station before reaching the Abu Samra border. You will also be able to get some refreshments for yourself here as there are eateries. The station has designated prayer rooms as well as toilets.
Once you have crossed the Abu Samra border and entered Saudi Arabia, you should be able to find a petrol station approximately 15 kilometres away.
Close to the entry and exit point of Bahrain, you will be able to find many petrol stations to make sure you can fuel up when you enter Bahrain or just before you leave Bahrain.