England fans could be treated to cut-price beer at 2022 World Cup in Qatar… with average pint costing staggering £10
- Qatar wants to make alcohol accessible for fans when it hosts the World Cup
- It is by far the smallest country in size ever to have hosted the tournament
- Average price of pint is around £10 with single glass of wine costing almost £20
England fans will be treated to subsidised beer should Gareth Southgate’s side qualify for the 2022 World Cup amid concerns about the price of alcohol in Qatar.
The World Cup organising committee are understood to be lobbying hotels and restaurants in Doha to reduce prices during the tournament and extend Happy Hours, which are already in operation at many licenced premises.
The average price of a pint in Doha is around £10 with a single glass of wine costing almost £20, which tournament organisers fear will be off-putting to visiting fans.
England fans will be treated to subsidised beer should side qualify for the 2022 World Cup
While the organising committee have no plans to subsidise alcohol themselves they are confident that the private sector will slash prices.
It is unclear at present whether visitors will be able to drink at the stadiums and Fanzones in Qatar, where it is illegal to consume alcohol in public, or on the static cruise ships that will be used as hotels to accommodate thousands or tourists.
‘Alcohol is not as readily here as in other parts of the world, but for the World Cup we want to ensure it is accessible for fans who want to have a drink,’ said Nasser Al Khater, chief executive office of the 2022 World Cup.
‘We are trying to find designated locations for fans to have alcohol, other than traditional places such as hotels and so forth. The issue of alcohol is being discussed right now to see if we can find a way to make it cheaper. We recognise there is an issue with the price and it is something we are looking into.’
Al Khater conceded that the behaviour of England fans was a concern for World Cup organisers following the disturbances that marred last summer’s UEFA Nations League finals in Portugal. There is little history of anti-social history in Qatar, but Al Khater expressed confidence that the security services and army will be able to cope with any troublemakers if necessary.
Safety and security of all fans is a priority for the organisers of the 2022 World Cup finals
‘Everyone has to abide by the law,’ he said. ‘During the World Cup these laws are still going to be applicable. But I also think there needs to be a lot of education for both sides. Whether it is the security apparatus here, but also for the visiting fans in the information they receive. I think it is a concern.’
Al Khater also called on all travelling fans to respect Qatar’s socially conservative culture, but provided reassurance that gay and transgender visitors will be welcomed to a country where homosexuality is illegal.
‘There will be different cultures that are going to be descending here, and we need to maintain that we are a hospitable culture and hospitable people,’ he said. ‘But vice versa we are also going to expect that people get acquainted with our norms and our culture and our laws.
‘We will make sure it’s a safe World Cup for everybody and a World Cup where everybody feels welcome. And that nobody feels that they are in any way intimidated or threatened, whatever it’s over religion or gender – across the board, for everybody.
‘I would like to assure any fan of any gender, orientation, religion, race, to rest assured that Qatar is one of the safest countries in the world,’ he said. ‘They will all be welcome here and the safety and security of every single fans is of the utmost importance to us.’