FIFA World Cup 2022 started on Sunday in Qatar. The first game of the mega sporting event was contested between the hosts Qatar and Ecuador. Before the football action commenced, an opening ceremony was held at the Al Bayt Stadium to declare the tournament ‘open’. South Korea’s famous band BTS’ singer, Jungkook performed in the opening ceremony, among others. Qatar is expecting around 1.5 million spectators during the FIFA World Cup 2022 matches, from November 20 to December 18. However, if you planning to visit Qatar, know the travel and stay dos and don’ts:
As of November 1, visitors are no longer required to get a COVID-19 test prior to flying into Qatar. Visitors who test positive for SARS-CoV-2 while they are in Qatar will, however, be required to take isolation measures according to Qatar rules.
No quarantine or COVID-19 test is required after arrival in Qatar.
Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 while in Qatar will be required to isolate.
Masks are mandatory within healthcare facilities and on public transport
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What to wear?
Attitudes towards dress are relaxed in Qatar, though visitors are expected to show respect for local culture by avoiding excessively revealing clothing in public places. In malls, it is appropriate to cover the shoulders and wear clothing over the knee.
You cannot bring alcohol into Qatar – it is strictly prohibited. However, alcohol is served in licensed restaurants and in many hotels across the country but drinking alcohol outside of designated areas is prohibited. TIP: Do not buy alcohol en route to Qatar at duty free shops because it will be confiscated upon arrival into Qatar.
Inside the stadium bowl, ticket holders will have access to non-alcoholic Budweiser Zero. At the FIFA Fan Festival, Budweiser will be available to purchase from 6.30 pm.
Drugs & E-Cigarettes:
There is zero tolerance for drugs-related offences in Qatar. The penalties for the use of, trafficking, smuggling and possession of drugs (even residual amounts) can include lengthy custodial sentences, heavy fines and deportation. Qatar law also prohibits the importation, sale and purchase of electronic cigarettes, liquids and other similar products (eg. electronic shisha pipes).
Some prescribed and over the counter medicines may be controlled substances in Qatar. If you need to bring in controlled/prescription medication into Qatar, ensure you carry your official doctor’s prescription, hospital note or a letter from your GP, detailing the drug, the quantity prescribed and dosage. This note or letter should also be signed by the doctor/consultant and stamped by the hospital or surgery.
If you’d like to capture imagery in-country using a drone or tripod, you have to seek respective permits at least three to four weeks in advance of your trip.
The use of a drone requires not only permits, but a local operator license. Please note, some locations are off limits due to security and safety restrictions.
All major credit cards are accepted at most locations and retail outlets, including museum gift shops, shopping malls and restaurants. If you require cash, ATMs are widely available. All shops are required to provide electronic payment services and cash is not required for most transactions. It is worth taking out cash to haggle for a bargain at Souq Waqif and the traditional markets.
The official language in Qatar is Arabic, but English is commonly spoken throughout all public places.
According to the Crime Index of Numbeo– the world’s largest database of user-contributed data on cities and countries – Qatar has ranked as the world’s safest country for the past three years.
One of the easiest ways to get around Qatar comfortably and efficiently is on Doha Metro. The slick system uses driverless trains and links the majority of the country’s stadiums and top tourism attractions.
The winter weather in Qatar is perfect for outdoor adventuring, with lows of around 14°C and highs around of 25 °C.
Other details: https://visitqatar.com/intl-en