The FIFA World Cup 2022 has officially opened. It’s the biggest sporting event hosted by Qatar or any country in the Middle East.
With 1.5 million expected visitors, the FIFA World Cup 2022 will put the spotlight on Qatar. Whether you’re part of the wave of tourists going to Qatar or following the event online or through television broadcasts, we have listed here some of the things that you should know about the Qatar World Cup 2022.
The World Cup is taking place from November 20 to December 18, 2022. Qatar is the host country this year, making it the third country in Asia to do so after the 2002 tournament was jointly held in Japan and South Korea.
There are many unique things about the Qatar World Cup.
This year’s World Cup will be the last tournament with a total of 32 teams competing. The 2026 World Cup, which will be held in different cities in North America, will have 48 teams participate in the tournament.
An audience of an estimated 3 billion worldwide is expected to tune into the 64 matches in the tournament, while the final match is expected to draw in a billion fans.
There are 8 stadiums to be used for matches during the 2022 tournament. All of these stadiums are within 50 km of downtown Doha, Qatar’s capital. One of these venues, Stadium 974, is made out of 974 shipping containers. It’s a modular stadium that can be taken apart and reassembled in another location after the event.
Qatar World Cup 2022 is, by far, the most expensive World Cup in the history of the tournament. There’s no official confirmation on how much Qatar has spent on the infrastructure for the tournament, but reports range from $200 billion to $229 billion. The estimated cost for each stadium ranges from $6.5 to $10 billion.
Qatar aimed to become the host for the 2022 World Cup in a bid to diversify its economy. Like other Middle Eastern countries that are rich in petroleum and largely dependent on the resource, Qatar is trying to add variety to its economy. Qatar is hoping to draw tourists, and this big-ticket event is one of the best ways to attract the attention of potential visitors. Qatar is also counting on the hype created by the World Cup to turn it into a capital of sports tourism.
South Korean artist Jungkook, a member of the phenomenal K-POP group BTS, performed during the opening ceremonies. He was joined by Qatari singers Fahad Al-Kubaisi and Dana. There were other artists who were rumored to appear but many of them have denied it.
If you’re going to Qatar for the World Cup or if you’re already there, you don’t have to worry about your safety. Qatar has been ranked as the safest country in the world for 2021 and 2022 based on the Numbeo Crime Index. You can enjoy the tournament there while feeling secure.
You might be worried about consuming alcoholic drinks in Qatar since other Middle Eastern countries are quite strict about that. Alcoholic beverages are regulated in Qatar and only available in certain establishments including hotels. Drinking publicly is strictly prohibited in Qatar. So, drinking in the stadiums is out of the question.
Arabic is the official language of Qatar and the locals speak their own dialect. According to the website of Tomedes, a language platform that offers Arabic translation services among others, “Arabic has a complex and unique method of constructing words from their basic root. The pattern of three letters such as ‘k-t-b’ is the foundation of words that include the semantic field of writing.”
However, that shouldn’t prove to be a problem with travelers since English is widely understood in the country. Tourists from other countries will have no trouble communicating with the locals in Qatar.
Qatar World Cup 2022 is in full swing now. As the most expensive tournament in FIFA history, a lot is at stake in the games, but Qatar is up to the challenge.