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Table 5 Responses of participants to offer of compensation

From: Procedures of recruiting, obtaining informed consent, and compensating research participants in Qatar: findings from a qualitative investigation

Expressed gratitude. RA: Ah, thank you so much and to express my gratitude for your time and effort, I want to give you a fifty riyal Hala Card.
Participants often thanked the RAs for the Hala card, sometimes making a prayer for them.
P: No [laughs].
RA: It’s not a big thing really.
P: No, no… My love.
RA: Thank you so much for your time.
P: God bless you.
   Jordanian woman
Exhibited surprise. P: Wow!
Some participants were pleasantly surprised to receive the card. RA: As a token of appreciation.
P: (Laughing) Wow!
RA: That you… you gave your important suggestions, it was your time was valuable still you waited for us to finish the interview.
P: That’s great.
   Pakistani woman
Engaged in polite bartering. RA: …. to express my thankfulness I would like to give you fifty riyals Hala Card for the time that you had spent ( S: [laughs]) and the valuable information that you gave me…
Others politely declined the card, resulting in a back and forth cultural exchange about whether or not they should accept the compensation. Some RAs playfully pleaded with participants to accept the cards as a reward for their participation.
P: I don’t need it really
RA: …no it’s just as a gift, a gift [laughs]
P: alright, I won’t say no
   Bahraini man
RA: … And as an appreciation for giving us the time, we would like to give you a Hala Card of fifty riyals.
P, RA: (Laughing)
P: Thank you, you don’t have to do that.
RA: No, it’s okay.
P: No, you have to have it.
RA: (Smiling) No, no, no.
P: No, no, you have to have it
RA: I can’t have it. I have to give it to you.
P: Oh, that’s a shame.
   British woman
Commented that compensation was unnecessary. RA: …This is for you…
Some participants felt the cards were unnecessary, as they didn’t use them or should be given to others who are more in need. P: What’s that, what’s that?
RA: For taking part in the research.
P: Give it to somebody else if he needs it.
   British man
It’s alright. No, because I don’t use these cards.
   British man
Okay, is this charity?
   Pakistani man
Clarified motivation for participation. If at least one person gets a better treatment because of my sayings, I am happy. I am happ(ier) than this reward.
Some participants clarified their motivation for participating in the study was for altruistic purposes.
   Indian woman
This is as my duty, means, it is not…aah…I mean this is not about money at all.
   Egyptian woman
Stated they were unfamiliar with card. P: What is a Hala Card?
A few people were unfamiliar with the Hala Card and did not know how to use it. The RAs explained that the Hala Cards are to be used with their mobile phones. RA: For the mobile.
P: Okay.
   Egyptian woman
RA: …this is a simple appreciation, a present for your time and your collaboration…
P: What am I supposed to do with this?
RA: Use it.
P: Where to use it?
RA: This is Hala Card; use it for your telephone.
   Palestinian woman
Expressed concern about negative consequences. No, still if I take this card then there is no problem for me?
Some participants were concerned that accepting the reward at the end of the interview would result in negative ramifications for them.
   Bangladeshi man
We will not fall into trouble because of this no?
   Nepali man
  1. RA = Research assistant, P = Participant.