Whoa – big news here!
As reported by The Athletic, only people/fans with match tickets can receive a Hayya Card (visa) to enter Qatar. This should not be too surprising as there’s already massive concern and theories abound about accommodation capacity (including our own opinion on availability) for the tiny country that’s been under constant construction for 12 years.
Still, this is a major disappointment for fans wanting to experience the festive atmosphere but weren’t fortunate enough to receive a ticket.
What Does It Ultimately Mean
Our first ever foray into the World Cup, in 2006, was a life-altering event. We explored Germany without any tickets to a match and wouldn’t change any aspect of that trip. We connected with strangers and cultures from all over the world, developed life-long bonds and experienced the magic of the Cup…all because we could venture out without much of a plan outside of flights.
Now, with this news, you can’t get lodging without a Hayya Card and you can’t get a Hayya Card without a match ticket and you can’t get into Qatar without a Hayya Card. The idea of showing up without a ticket to still feel close to the action and obtain last minute tickets will not exist and fans will have to wait 4 more years for the next chance.
Additionally, this may negatively impact attendance without an existing population of fans in attendance to consume last minute tickets from those who reposted tickets for sale b/c they couldn’t make the trip, decided to leave early or attend a different game b/c their team was eliminated.
Time will tell if there’s any new developments as November quickly approaches but this quote in The Athletic article, if true, is quite definitive.
🗣BIG NEWS (via @TheAthleticUK)🗣— The World Cup Guide (@World_Cup_Guide) April 3, 2022
Ticketless fans will NOT be allowed into #Qatar during #WorldCup
Berhold Trenkel, COO of Qatar Tourism, told The Sun on Sunday: A decision has been taken that only fans with match 🎟 will be allowed visas https://t.co/tkNdkpTmSm
This is actually slightly untrue as Hayya 1 + 3 was announced!
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