Gareth Southgate: Not a lot more players can do to tackle Qatar human rights issues
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The opening match in the World Cup kicks off on November 20 with the final to be held on December 18. England will play their first game on November 21. But what rules will British tourists need to follow while they are there?
British tourists will need to have at least six months left on their passport from the date they arrive in Qatar.
Tourists will also need to apply for a ‘Hayya card’ if they want to travel to Qatar from November 1.
The ‘Hayya’ card means ‘let’s go’ and tourists can choose between a physical card or an online version.
The Foreign Office states: “This requirement may continue up until January 23, 2023, and applies to all visitors.”
Tourists will need to have at least one match ticket to qualify for a ‘Hayya’ card.
Alcohol is currently available in hotels in Qatar and will also be served at some fan zones during the tournament.
Alcohol is not served at restaurants in Qatar and it is illegal to drink alcohol or be drunk in public.
The Foreign Office warns that people could face a prison sentence for breaking the rules or a fine of QAR3,000 (£600).
According to reports, drunk and disorderly fans will be placed in ‘sobering tents’ until they are ready to leave.
The Qatar Tourism Authority states: “Visitors (men as well as women) are expected to show respect for local culture by avoiding excessively revealing clothing in public.
“It is generally recommended for men and women to ensure their shoulders and knees are covered.”
British tourists should follow advice from the Tourism Authority and avoid revealing clothing in Qatar.
Showing overt affection is frowned upon in Qatar and Qatari women will not shake hands with men.
Homosexuality is illegal in Qatar and people could face imprisonment of up to three years in some cases.
However, the UK Foreign Office says that the hosts have confirmed that “everyone is welcome” at the World Cup.
There will be no restrictions on non-married friends or couples including LGBT+ couples staying in the same room.
The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy expects to receive around 1.5 million tourists during the World Cup.
Many hotels have already sold out their rooms and some fans will stay in Fan Village Cabins, which are containers.
Cruise ships will also host fans during the World Cup with many of the England team’s wives and girlfriends expected to stay on one.
British tourists could also opt to stay in neighbouring Dubai as Qatar Airways is planning to run special Match Day Shuttle flights for fans.
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