Alcohol and apparel – what you might want to know earlier than travelling to Qatar for the World Cup



The soccer cleaning soap opera by no means ends. No sooner will the whistle blow on at present’s Champions League Ultimate than our consideration will flip to a different season and one other showpiece occasion. We are actually lower than six months away from what could show to be essentially the most controversial match within the sport’s historical past: the twenty second males’s World Cup, which is because of be held in Qatar between November 21 and December 18 ( Anybody who has utilized for tickets will now, if not already, be discovering out whether or not they’ve been profitable – however there is a bit more to ponder with this explicit goal-fest than whether or not you may get to a recreation…

Why is the match controversial?

Allegations of corruption and bribery within the bidding course of – firmly rebutted – have swirled across the match since December 2010, when Qatar was awarded what would be the first Fifa World Cup within the Center East. Somewhat extra severe are the experiences that greater than 6,500 staff from Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka died whereas constructing the infrastructure – together with seven new stadia – between 2010 and 2020 (this “low” quantity doesn’t cowl further migrants from the Philippines and Kenya). There have additionally been allegations by Amnesty Worldwide of compelled labour and withheld wages. The human rights organisation has revealed tales from staff, who declare they’ve been “abused and exploited – whereas Fifa makes big earnings”. Qatar has denied Amnesty’s claims of employee exploitation. Additional points – particularly over LBGTQ followers – will probably be more and more voiced as kick-off will get nearer.

I simply need to watch the match reside. Can I try this?

Assuming you may have been profitable within the poll then sure, completely. Ticket holders will obtain additional particulars, however a key step would be the want to use for a “Hayya card” (see – a pre-registration requirement, which is able to double as a de-facto tourism visa and a go to achieve entry to stadium areas (with an acceptable match ticket).

How do I get there?

Qatar Airways ( is the plain possibility – it gives direct flights to the Qatari capital Doha from Heathrow, Gatwick, Edinburgh and Manchester (continuous providers from Birmingham and Cardiff, positioned on maintain within the pandemic, could but return as properly). British Airways ( flies in too – from Gatwick.

The Hayya card may also present entry to match-day public transport – a handy factor, even when 5 of the eight stadia are positioned in both Doha or Al-Rayyan (a westerly a part of the capital conurbation), whereas a mere 40 miles separate the coastal metropolis of Al-Khor, the situation the northernmost enviornment, from Al-Wakrah, the location of southernmost enviornment. England are scheduled to play in each Al-Khor and Al-Rayyan in the course of the group stage – and could also be joined in them by both Wales or Scotland, as soon as the qualification course of is accomplished.

What can I take with me? 

Right here’s the place it turns into sophisticated. Qatar is an Islamic nation, and there are strict guidelines on imports, together with private possessions. Your baggage mustn’t include alcohol, medication, pornography, pork merchandise or non-Islamic spiritual books. If unsure, err on the aspect of warning – seemingly harmless gadgets could trigger you bother. For instance, e-cigarettes have been banned in Qatar since 2014. Extra particulars at 

How you can gown for the Qatar World Cup

One thing it is best to pack is conservative clothes – there may be an expectation of modesty in gown. Girls are suggested to cowl their shoulders and put on lengthy skirts or trousers in public, together with when driving. Keep away from bikinis on public seashores (restrict this to the confines of a non-public seaside or your lodge pool). Males ought to keep away from toplessness and shorts in public locations.

Will or not it’s a dry match?

No. However will probably be notably quick on a number of the boozy scenes which have scarred earlier World Cups. Alcohol isn’t prohibited in Qatar, however entry to it’s restricted – typically to licensed eating places and bars in accommodations. The authorized consuming age is 21. Consuming exterior these parameters is prohibited, and may be topic to punishments of as much as 3,000 Qatari riyals (about £660) or six months in jail. 

That stated, after lobbying from the beer trade, followers will be capable of purchase drinks on the recreation, from kiosks within the stadium grounds (though they gained’t be capable of have them within the stands, or close by of the pitch). Particular pop-up “seaside golf equipment” providing alcohol are additionally deliberate – however supporters have been warned to devour it carefully, in a rustic the place public drunkenness is anathema.

Who can I journey with, and are the LGBTQ neighborhood welcome?

Right here’s the place it turns into trickier nonetheless. Single co-habitation and intercourse exterior wedlock are forbidden in Qatar, and may be punishable by a jail sentence. Which implies that, even for those who and your different half have been collectively for 30 years, however have by no means tied the knot, you’ll be able to’t in concept share a lodge room.

The identical diktat will apply to LBGTQ travellers. Homosexuality is prohibited in Qatar. Requested in 2010 how LBGTQ followers may attend the match, Fifa’s then-president Sepp Blatter laughed that “they need to chorus from any sexual actions [if they want to travel]”. Blatter has since been disgraced, however – apart from agreeing to rainbow flags being displayed at World Cup fixtures, and polished phrases on how “this match [will leave] actually transformational social, human, financial and environmental legacies”, from Hassan al-Thawadi, secretary basic of the match’s Supreme Committee for Supply and Legacy – Qatar’s authorized place remains to be set in stone.

That stated Fifa not too long ago threatened accommodations denying rooms to same-sex {couples} with cancellation of their contracts, and has stated it “is assured that every one crucial measures will probably be in place for LGBTQ supporters, in order that they, like everybody else, can really feel welcome and secure”. An investigation by Norwegian, Danish and Swedish journalists earlier this month noticed three of the 69 accommodations on the official FIFA listing refuse a reserving request from a homosexual couple. One other 20 issued warnings about public shows of affection, though this recommendation goes for all {couples}.

The place can I keep?

When you’re questioning find out how to e book a lodge for the Fifa World Cup 2022, you have to to point out proof of your ticket utility quantity and e book by way of the official Qatar 2022 portal. Right here you’ll be able to select between accommodations, residences and villas, fundamental cabins in desert fan parks and even static cruise ships. The nation can be permitting residents to host ‘family and friends’, in the event that they register. 

When it comes to accommodations, many of the choices are massive worldwide chain properties anticipate numerous Hilton accommodations and an opulent habour-side 4 Seasons outpost. Sadly, the bulk aren’t out there having been block-booked by companies. Nevertheless, some new accommodations are nonetheless beneath building and rooms are but to be launched.

When you do go for a cabin in a desert fan park, be warned that these are basically transformed delivery containers and would not have air-conditioning. 

Is there something to see past the stadium?

As talked about, Qatar isn’t a big nation (it’s the planet’s 164th “greatest”), but it surely gives meals, historical past and tradition for these glad to hunt it. Doha is architecturally unimaginable, splicing conventional souks to skyscrapers by the likes of Jean Nouvel. There are luxurious resorts on Qatar’s 350 miles of coast, but in addition footprints within the desert, just like the Al Jassasiya rock carvings – 874 neolithic petroglyphs up within the north-east (see For half-and-half enjoyable, Trailfinders ( gives a 10-night “Qatar & Seychelles” break – from £3,275 a head (not together with flights).

Covid guidelines 

All travellers should obtain the Ehteraz monitor and hint app, and present a UK Covid go or a unfavourable PCR take a look at taken throughout the final 48 hours, in addition to proof of full vaccination

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