In Doha, exchange houses abound. These exchange houses also serves as remittance centers for anyone who wants to send money to their families back home. Back when I was based in Jakarta, I sent money online through my bank and I was charged USD 20 for every transaction which was too much really but I didn’t know any other cheaper alternative back then. And for every transaction you get charged, you would be re-charged at the home country for another 15-20 USD!
When I started working in Doha, my officemates told me of exchange houses and the hunt for the highest exchange rate with the lowest charge cost began. I started with Al Mana Exchange near the airport road because I lived 5 minutes walk away from there. The service charge for bank to bank transfers is fixed at QR 20. And the exchange rates are definitely lower than what I would have received from other houses.
Now, fast forward… I have stuck with Al Dar Exchange in Al Nasr which gives the best rates for me at QR 15 charge. It would be worth mentioning that what you sent to your home country would be the same amount your family member / loved one will be receiving, no other charges back home. So if I send 20,000 QAR at 12 PHP exchange rate, my sister would receive PHP 240,000 no charge in her bank account which is great!
Yesterday, I had to send money to the USA and the people I am in contact with there needs me to have the money transferred bank to bank. It was then that I only knew Al Dar Exchange is not able to transact bank to bank for some countries, USA included. So I tried Al Sadd Exchange, and fortunately they have the service. You can send money to the USA bank to bank at QR 50 charge. But the bank in the USA would charge USD 40 (pretty huge)… but at least that was one chore off my list during the week.
My officemates tell me these houses also have good rates and service charge combination:
1. Al Fardan
2. Al Mirqab