Doha, Qatar from the air. (photo via ronemmons/iStock/Getty Images Plus)
The 2022 World Cup, arguably the greatest global sporting spectacle in the world, will kick off in Qatar in November – the first time soccer’s quadrennial championship will be held in a Middle East country.
But those rabid fans coming from every corner of the world need to know a few things in advance long before arriving to cheer on their favorite country.
Global Rescue, a leading travel risk and crisis management firm, released its risk assessment for the 2022 FIFA World Cup scheduled to take place in Qatar between November 20th and December 18th.
“There are special international entry requirements for travelers to Qatar whether your trip is for the World Cup or not,” said Kent Webber, senior manager of Intelligence Services at Global Rescue and a former senior intelligence operations officer in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence at the Pentagon. “Travelers entering Qatar after November 1st will need to have a Hayya card and a passport, regardless of the purpose of the visit.”
To that end, Webber said Qatar Airways has optimized flights to prepare for an influx of travelers during the World Cup.
In addition, while tourists are not required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or to present negative COVID-19 test results upon arrival, the contact-tracing app Ehteraz is required for entry into healthcare facilities.
Global Rescue also made one more important note – the laws of your home country do not apply in Qatar. That also includes social mores, as all travelers are advised to dress conservatively in public spaces. Female visitors should not show their shoulders and avoid wearing short skirts. Public displays of affection are considered offensive and could result in legal action.
“The laws of your home country don’t travel with you — that’s why knowing the local laws of Qatar is critical before traveling there,” said Dan Richards, Global Rescue’s CEO.
In addition, Qatar is curbing the intake of alcohol being brought in by fans.