Qatar Labour Law on Annual Leave and Holidays (2024)

Doha Guides Team regularly reviews this article to ensure the content is up-to-date and accurate. The last editorial review and update were on 02 February 2024.

Studies have shown that it is important for workers to take short breaks from deadlines and workloads to improve their work-life balance, boost overall mood, and improve productivity.

Like most modern economies, Qatar also has defined policies regarding employee vacations and mandatory holidays. Educating yourself about Qatar’s labour laws and regulations is important if you plan on working here, especially regarding employees’ paid leave entitlements.

This article will cover the following important sections of the Qatar Labour Law on annual leave, mandatory holidays, and Hajj leave for Muslim employees.

The holidays and annual leave policies are covered under Articles 78 to 85 of Qatar Labour Law.

Mandatory Holidays

According to Article 78, all workers shall be entitled to holidays with a full wage as follows:

  • Three (3) working days on the occasion of Eid AI-Fitr.
  • Three (3) working days on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha.
  • One (1) working day on the occasion of Independence Day.
  • Three (3) working days, their dates to be specified by the employer.
OccasionNumber of Days
Eid AI-Fitr3 Working Days
Eid AI-Adha3 Working Days
Qatar National Day1 Working Day
To be specified by the Employer3 Working Days
Mandatory Holidays as per Qatar Labour Law

If it is mandatory for a worker to remain employed during a period of such leave, the provision of Article 75 (related to overtime payment) shall apply. This law states employees working overtime should be paid 125% of their hourly wage.


Qatar Labour Law on Annual Leave

According to Article 79 of Qatar Labour Law, workers who have completed one continuous year in the service shall be entitled to annual leave with their basic wage.

  • The annual leave will be a minimum of three weeks for workers who have worked less than five years.
  • The annual leave will be a minimum of four weeks for workers who have worked for five years or more.
Service PeriodAnnual Leave
Less than one yearNot entitled
Less than five yearsMinimum of three weeks
Five years or moreMinimum of four weeks
Minimum Annual Leave as per Qatar Labour Law

The Worker shall be entitled to a leave for the fractions of the year proportionately with the period he spent in the service.

Annual Leave Salary Calculation

According to Article 72, the wage of the worker during the annual or sick leave and his end-of-service gratuity shall be calculated based on his basic wage (basic salary) on the date of entitlement.

If the worker is employed on a piecework basis, the entitlement shall be calculated based on his average wages for the three months preceding the date of entitlement.

Payment of Annual Leave Salary

According to Article 68 of the Labour Law, the employer shall pay to the worker prior the date of his annual leave due remuneration for the work he performed up to the date of the annual leave in addition to the due leave allowance.

Qatar Labour Law: Annual Leave and Holidays

Who decides the annual leave dates?

According to Article 80, the employer can specify the annual leave dates per the work requirements. The employer can also divide the annual leave upon the worker’s consent. However, such division shall not be into more than two periods.

For example, an employer (with the worker’s consent) can divide the annual leave of 24 days into two periods of 12 days each (or any fraction), but it should not be split into three periods of 8 days each.

Carry Forward of Annual Leave

Upon receiving a written request from the worker, an employer can postpone (carry forward) no more than half of the annual leave to the following year.

For example, a worker with 24 days of annual leave can request his employer to carry forward ten days of his annual leave to the following year. However, he cannot carry forward more than 12 days out of his 24 days.

Can the employer deny annual leave to workers?

All workers are entitled to the minimum days of annual leave, as mentioned earlier. As per Article 81, the worker shall not waive his entitlement to the annual leave, and any agreement to the contrary shall be null and void.

If the employment contract is terminated (for any reason) before the worker takes his annual leave, the worker is entitled to receive a cash allowance. This cash allowance shall be equivalent to the basic wage for the leave days he is entitled to.


Hajj Leave for Muslim Workers

As per Article 83, a Muslim worker shall be granted a leave without pay, not more than twenty (20) days, to perform Hajj (pilgrimage) for once during his service.

Please note that, unlike annual leave, Hajj leave is not an entitlement for the employee. It is solely up to the employer’s discretion to grant this leave or not. Also, note that the worker will not be paid during this leave.

Employers should specify how many workers can be granted such leaves annually. Priority should be given to workers in continuous service for a longer period.

  • Hajj leave shall be without pay.
  • Hajj leave shall not be more than twenty (20) days.
  • Hajj leave can be given only once during a worker’s service.

If the worker starts working with another employer and the employer discovers that the worker has been granted a leave to perform Hajj by another employer, then the current employer may reject granting such leave to the worker since it is given once throughout the service period.


Important Points to Note

As per Article 84, a worker shall not work for another employer during his leave. If it has been proved that the worker breached this condition, the employer can deprive him of his wage for the period of leave and recover what has been already paid.

According to Article 85, the employer cannot terminate the employment contract or notify the worker of termination during any of his annual leaves. If the notice period expires during such leave, the employer shall not notify the worker that the contract is terminated.

Please note that the Qatar Labour Law rules do not apply to domestic workers and those under personal sponsorship. The rules for employees at public sector companies and government workers are also not covered under the Labour Law.


Frequently Asked Questions


How many days of leave per year are in Qatar?

As per Article 79 of Qatar Labour Law, the annual leave will be a minimum of 3 weeks for workers who have worked at least one year but less than 5 years. It would be a minimum of 4 weeks for workers who have worked for 5 years or more.

How is leave salary calculated in Qatar law?

Leave salary is calculated as per the worker’s basic salary on the due date. For those who are working on a piecework basis, it would be the worker’s average remuneration for the last three months.

Disclaimer: The information posted above should only be used as a reference. For more updated guidelines, please contact Qatar Labour and the appropriate authorities.


Related Articles:

  1. How To Calculate End of Service Gratuity
  2. Qatar Labour Law: Working Hours and Overtime
  3. Qatar Labour Law on Sick Leave and Maternity Leave
  4. Minimum Wage in Qatar: Everything You Need To Know
  5. How To Change Job in Qatar Without NOC
  6. Guide To Qatar Wage Protection System WPS
  7. 3 Ways To Easily Check Travel Ban in Qatar

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Reference: Qatar Legal Portal


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  1. Hi Mam /Sir,

    I would like to ask about the annual leave an employee should have.. My offer letter and contract states that I will have 21 days annual leave. I just finish my 1 year last May 19 and talked about my leave to my employer. By the way I’m working as a nurse and my employer is an agency deploying workers to various clinics. But my employer says that the annual leave will be only taken after my initial 2 years contract and if I will renew it that’s the time I can use my leave. I ask them how can I use my leave if my contract is finish already. I also ask them if it’s possible to convert it on cash after my service and they said it will not be converted. We will just receive gratuity after 2 yrs if we will not renew our contract. Is it legal for them to do that we will not have our annual leave? And not pay that annual leave if our contract is finish?

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Mina, If it is mentioned in the contract, they cannot violate that. You can file a labour complaint if you want.

  2. My joining date is March 2 2018, my vacation will start on march 3 every year or it will be April 4,May 5,June 6 like changing? considering 1 month vacation

    1. Doha Guides Team

      It should be March every year. However please note that employer can change the dates as per the work load at your company during a period. You should reach an agreement with the employer.

  3. Can you confirm which vacation date is correct considering 1 month vacation ?

    Joining date Vacation Year Vacation starting date
    March 2 2018 2019 March 2 2019
    2020 April 3 2020
    2021 May 4 2021
    2022 June 5 2022
    2023 July 6 2023
    2024 August 7 2024

    Joining date Vacation Year Vacation starting date
    March 2 2018 2019 March 3 2019
    2020 March 3 2020
    2021 March 3 2021
    2022 March 3 2022
    2023 March 3 2023
    2024 March 3 2024

  4. Good morning. I would like to ask regarding leave salary. Every employee is entitle to have leave salary even he/she didnt go for vacation. For example my collegue last vacation is 2018. Calculation of leave salary is from 2018 till 2023 (he will go for vacation).HR said why he will pay leave salary he give salary and he didnt go out. Can you tell me if HR is correct or he can get the leave salary.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi, The law doesn’t say anything about leave salary if the employee didn’t take his rightful vacation. Employee can carry forward up to half of his leave to next year. Not going on leave for many years and asking to be compensated later is not an option.
      According to Article 81 “The Worker may not waive his right to the annual leave. Any agreement to the contrary shall be null and void. If the Employment Contract ended, for any reason, before taking such leave, the Worker shall be entitled to a cash alternative equivalent to his payment for the due leave days.”

  5. Hi, would like to ask. If the employer says that the annual leave can be taken after the 2 years contract is it acceptable. Because the offer letter and our contract says that we have annual leave of 21 days/year. And it doesn’t indicate in the contract that we can get those leave after 2 yrs of our contract.

  6. Geny Benedicta Asuncion

    Hi sir @mam
    How if my employer not give my vacation pay what shall i do? And my gratuity also i work as 5years now same employer?,

  7. Good day, may I know when must the employer give the said annual leave pay to employee who work more than a year? Maybe 12.5 months. Thank you.

  8. Hi, is it legal that during probation period first they reduced my salary 25 per cent and changed my position. And now I completed six months and they want to reduce my salary again 25 per cent. I thought they can’t do that it is ilegal can you please guide me?

  9. Tumsiime Leopold

    Good morning
    After 2 years and a half years of service and you request for vacation 3 months prior,is in inorder for a company to postpone your vacation that because they don’t have more man power and it’s 6 months from that time you requested for vacation

  10. Hi,
    I resign and get approval from adsla until my last day of noticed period. But my company hold my salary. Is it right to hold my salary and when I can possible get my pending payment. Thank you

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Gian, Your company has to pay your salary as usual and pay the end of service benefit (if any) at the end of notice period.

  11. Romualdo Pedraza Bautista

    Just to Inquire regarding current dispute with my Employer.
    I work for10 years in my company. Last quarter of 2022 i sent notice to my employer that i will not renew my visa which will expire 27January 2023.
    Is it legal to compute my last 2years of End of Service 21 days per year and did not pay my vacation leave pay for almost 2 years starting from June 2021 to february 2023.
    Waiting for your reply

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Romualdo, Your End of Service should be 21 days x 10 years. Regarding the vacation pay, it will depend on what is written in your contract.

  12. I have a question. Employees who come to Qatar sponsored by services copanies, are they under the labour law?
    Let’s say cleaning service as an example.
    Thank you on advance,
    Best regards

    John Man

  13. As employee take his/her annual leave on the month of February and joining month of march with a deduction of 2 days in March, because they said employee was paid full of 30 days in February, which they computed. but is employee fault that the month of February is only 28 days and not 30 days. to be deducted like that. your response please.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Ghie, If the contract says 30 days annual leave, then the employee is eligible for 30 days leave with salary. It doesn’t matter which month he took leave.

      1. If i will take my vacation on june 11 coming back on may 4 im entitled for 21 days vacation
        But during this days there is a qatar holiday
        This holliday will be counted on my vacation days ?

        1. Doha Guides Team

          Hi Lyn, If your contract says 21 working days per year, only working days will be counted.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Okky, Weekly day off is not included in vacation. If you take leave during working days, it can be deducted from vacation.

  14. A person employed as worker in Qatar since last 5 years,He attain age of 60 years,can he get extention to continue his job.,He availed leave for more than 3 months at his country,whether he can rejoin his work.at Qatar.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Sharma, It will depend on his employer and the profession. Sometimes extension is allowed beyond 60 years if the employer makes special request.

  15. Is there any labor law stating that employees shall be entitled for accommodation and food allowances during annual leave? as we continuously paying for accommodation rent or it depends on company policy?

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Mhar, No, If the employer is not providing food and accommodation during workdays, they don’t have to pay during annual leave also.

  16. Good day

    If I am entitled to 21 days leave annually, and work 6 days a week (with the 7th day regarded as an off day) and I apply for leave for example from 01/03/2023 to 21/03/2023, how many leave days will be deducted for that period selected?

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Stefan, If you leave policy says 21 working days, off-days will not be counted. In this case if your off day is Friday, 18 days will be deducted from available leave.

      1. Good day, Is it normal that my employer will give my annual leave pay after i come back from vacation? What if I will no longer come back? Please answer this..thank you guys.

        1. Doha Guides Team

          Hi Gwyn, Annual leave salary should be paid just like normal salary (on your pay roll date). As per the law, it is not necessary to pay it in advance.

  17. Am working with a construction company came with a Mason visa but was transferred to garage mechanic 8months now working no salary amending how can the labour law help me in Qatar

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Michael, If your off day is on a public holiday, you are supposed to receive another holiday or compensation (depending on HR policy).