Soccer World Cup: Recommendations and Key Information to Travel to Qatar 2022

The Countdown has Started. The Most Important Soccer Festival will Begin on November 20 and Thousands of Fans are Preparing their Bags for this Adventure. Here we Tell you Everything you Need to Know to Travel to Qatar 2022.

Aerial view of a city in Qatar

Photo: Pixabay

LatinAmerican Post | Erika Benitez

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Leer en español: Copa Mundial de fútbol: Recomendaciones e información clave para viajar a Catar 2022

The Al Bayt stadium is the venue chosen to open the 2022 Qatar World Cup, with the opening game between the local team and the Ecuadorian team. It is the most anticipated sporting event this year, which for the first time in its history will be held in a Middle Eastern country with little football tradition. Although in recent weeks the rules for visitors have been relaxed, this is all you need to keep in mind for your trip.

What is the necessary documentation to enter the country?

As a first step, all people must register in advance to obtain the Hayya card. It is a mandatory document that you will have to show to enter the stadiums (along with the tickets) and to enter the country. It is linked to your passport, is non-transferable and acts as a temporary visa.

About COVID-19

On November 1, 2022, the Qatar Ministry of Public Health updated the COVID-19 travel and return policy and established the following:

  • Visitors are no longer required to obtain a negative antigen or PCR test certificate before traveling to the state of Qatar. However, anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 while in the country will need to self-isolate in accordance with Ministry of Public Health guidelines.
  • As of November 1, 2022, visitors entering Qatar will not be required to register on the “Ehteraz” health app prior to arrival.
  • Travelers are not required to take a COVID-19 test before leaving Qatar. It will depend on the entry requirements in the destination countries.
  • Vaccination certificates will also not be mandatory, although local authorities recommend having the doses to avoid possible complications.

Likewise, it is important to take out medical insurance for your trip, since Qatar is one of the most expensive countries in the world and the costs of medical care are very high. Travelers must demonstrate economic solvency for the entire trip and have a return ticket.

On the other hand, in recent days, the organizers of the FIFA World Cup, Qatar 2022, met to finalize details on operational aspects of the tournament. At the press conference held at the Media Center of the host country, relevant issues such as recommendations and security preparations were discussed. It was also announced that after the end of the group stage (December 2), those who do not have tickets will be allowed to enter the country, but must have the Hayya card.

According to Colonel Dr. Jabr Al Nauaimi, Official Spokesperson for the Ministry of the Interior and the Security and Safety Operations Committee (SSOC), everything is in place to safely house tourists and locals at the World Cup. The official further added: "We are delighted to announce that today fans will be able to enter the State of Qatar after the completion of the Group Stage on December 2, 2022 to enjoy the unique atmosphere of the tournament."

Also read: The 5 Teams that Can Surprise in Qatar 2022

This opens the opportunity for people who have entrance tickets to the second phase matches to request their Hayya cards to enter the country through the “Hayya to Qatar 2022” platform or mobile application. Among the requirements is to have an accommodation reservation and the entrance fee for adults, children under 12 years of age do not have to pay.

Another aspect that worries fans is the issue of local weather. For the first time, the tournament will be played in autumn/winter, as a result of the venue being a country like Qatar. In general, its climate is desert, however, for the months of November and December the temperatures will be completely tolerable (between 20º and 30º Celsius), compared to the heat that characterizes it. Similarly, for the well-being and integrity of the fans, players and journalists who will cover the event, the stadiums were equipped with air conditioning systems that work with solar energy.

Once in Qatar

Here are more Worlds tips, rules and don'ts you won't want to miss

  • Public displays of affection are frowned upon, which is why you must be very careful, for example, when celebrating goals.
  • It is forbidden to bring alcohol into the country, as well as religious books, pornographic material or electronic cigarettes. Qatar is a Muslim country, so you will not be able to bring pork products either.
  • Alcohol cannot be consumed on public roads, only in designated spaces such as bars, hotels, restaurants and clubs. The stadium is not one of these places.
  • You may not photograph local people without asking permission, or government buildings.
  • Check the dress code in advance. When you go somewhere, avoid miniskirts, dresses, or sleeveless shirts. Hotels and tourist spaces can be freer and the rules are more lax.
  • The consumption or sale of drugs is totally prohibited, the penalties range from economic fines to imprisonment.

Qatar will become the world capital of soccer, but beyond the tournament, Doha, its capital, has several attractions to visit and explore its cultural beauty. Historical buildings and traditional community places that are a real wonder are some of them. You can include in your trip a visit to the Museum of Islamic Art, which has several exhibitions and an incredible view of the city, or the National Museum of Qatar, which houses a multitude of archaeological and heritage objects, manuscripts, etc.

To go shopping and hang out you have the popular Souk Waqif, with its traditional shops. In addition, you can find beaches, dunes, sports activities and much more. A country on the rise, cosmopolitan, which makes it the perfect setting to live unique experiences beyond the football party.

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