World Cup 2022 | Qatar & Latin American Travelers


Qatar 2022 World Cup – An event with its own weight for Latin American travelers

Qatar is preparing to receive more than 1.2 million visitors during the months of November and December 2022, according to the World Cup organizers.

At least five Latin American teams will be competing in the tournament along with 25 other nations.

Despite the instability of the world economy, and the unfavorable exchange rates of Latin American countries to travel, it is precisely the fans of these countries who are at the top of the ticket purchase list for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 that will be out in November and December.

In the first months that the sale opened, nearly 17 million tickets were requested, to enter, Qatar had the largest number of applicants.

Soccer fans from Argentina and Brazil were in second and third place respectively, followed by the United Kingdom. United Kingdom, France, India, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

Argentina vs Chile evening CA

Travel requirements to enter Qatar

Any visitor to Qatar who is not a citizen must present a negative pre-travel PCR 48 hours before the time of departure from the country of origin, according to the organizers of the event.

If vaccinated they will not need to quarantine or present a negative test upon arrival; In the case of unvaccinated visitors, they must quarantine for five days in a hotel or home.

Another requirement for all spectators, regardless of whether they are residents of Qatar or foreigners, is to process the Fan ID or locally known as Hay’ya Card to be able to enter the stadiums.

To request it, it’s necessary to have paid the tickets for the match and have the entry request number by email.

Qatar has various entry/exit restrictions for military personnel and LGBTQ+ population, in addition to HIV/AIDS restrictions for visitors and residents.

Also, medical examinations are required for all visitors and long-term residents; the entry of alcohol, narcotics, pork products, weapons and pornographic/sex-related materials is prohibited.

World Cup for Travelers from Latin America

In the case of travelers from Latin America, factors such as distance, unfavorable currency exchange, have not discouraged followers.

Tourism industry expects this event to have a positive impact that will allow some recovery of operators after the industry crisis in 2020.

Statistics indicate that searches for flights to Qatar in 2022 have shown a growth of 300%, with Mexico, Peru, Brazil, Argentina, the United States and Colombia being the countries that registered the highest number of searches.

From South America, flight prices can be steep, although many airlines fly from this region to Doha, for example, game tickets range from $70 to over $600, and $600 (US) and USD$1600 for the final.

How much would it cost for Latin America to travel to the Qatar 2022 World Cup?

Portals such as Bloomberg have made estimates of how much it would cost a fan to attend the World Cup from their country of origin, identifying that at least one stopover should be made to reach Doha, for which the best options were chosen, which include the cost of airfare, lodging, transportation and entrance to the stadium:

  • For Argentines, the total cost to travel to the tournament is USD$9,000, which is 59.55 minimum wages,
  • For Brazilians, Ecuadorians and Uruguayans the cost is around USD$7,000, the equivalent in minimum wages of 29.94, 17.83 and 14.97; respectively.
  • For Mexico, fourth in the list of the number of fans who requested tickets for the contest according to FIFA and with a large number of fans, must make an investment of almost USD$ 7,000, which is 27.27 minimum wages.

Beyond the economic complications generated by the pandemic, the Mexican government expects that nearly 80,000 people will travel to the Middle East to attend the World Cup, encouraging the team; in fact, a special team has been structuring to serve the Mexican fans.

In almost all the countries of Latin America, except Argentina, financing strategies have been developed aimed at increasing the payment options of the cost of tickets, being the highest, so that travelers can divide up to two cards.

Even in Mexico, the Operators have focused on facilitating travel by offering all-inclusive packages or planning stopovers with accommodation in Europe.

A determining factor to take into account is distance, cultural differences and, above all, language.

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What about fans traveling from the US?

Tourists traveling with a US passport do not require a visa application, and travelers can obtain the exemption upon arrival free of charge for a period of 30 days, for which they must have a validity of six months in their passport and a return or connection ticket.

Qatar Airways, the official airline of the country, has prepared for this event, for which it has designed a series of packages that include flights, accommodation and match tickets.

From the US, the airline connects more than 160 destinations around the world with Doha (the capital of Qatar). In fact, direct flights from the United States come from 12 cities:

  1. Atlanta,
  2. Boston,
  3. Chicago (O’Hare),
  4. Dallas-Fort Worth,
  5. Houston,
  6. Los Angeles,
  7. Miami,
  8. New York (JFK),
  9. Philadelphia,
  10. San Francisco,
  11. Seattle,
  12. Washington, D.C. (Dulles).

Qatar Airways flight status generally lists Hamad International Airport as the point of entry and bookings can be made from the 12 cities mentioned on more than 100 weekly flights.

Qatar Airways ticket prices from the United States range from $1,900 to $2,800, depending on the departure airport.

The role of marketing in the Qatar 2022 World Cup

It is understood that soccer is a huge passion for US Hispanics, the World Cup is not only the premier soccer event but there is also an ingrained excitement to cheer on the countries they have ties to.

This year, teams from Uruguay, Argentina, Mexico and Ecuador, among others, will compete for the opportunity to win the cup, which confirms that Hispanics from those countries will be more attentive to the matches and the announcements.

Due to the time of year the event will take place, fall in the US and Europe and spring in South America, and the time difference, many of the matches will take place in the morning and afternoon.

This is the opportunity for advertisers to redefine the strategies used in the World Cup in Russia, expecting digital channels through mobile devices to be the main means for fans to follow the results and see the best moments of the game.

Both large international brands and small local brands will be able to take advantage of the strong connection generated by the Hispanic audience both in the US and in the rest of the world, where soccer is a matter of celebration, pride and heritage.

The unknowns go through the questionings related to the organization of the event, the situation with migrant workers, the restrictions on the LGBTQ community, where brands must accept them, stay away from controversy or show the real purpose of the brand.

However, it is important to note that even when there will be all kinds of controversy in the advertising breaks during the games, the income that the World Cup will leave for this concept will be millionaires.

Colombia Futbol Fans vertical
Argentina Chile Copa AMerica Vertical

We are already talking about the 2026 World Cup

With a new format in which the competition will expand to 48 teams, the 2026 World Cup will be hosted by three countries: the United States, Mexico and Canada.

The general idea of ​​​​FIFA is to ensure that both teams and fans do not have to travel too much in different areas in which the championship will take place.

The process to select the venues began in 2017 and the applicants had to send information on the infrastructure of transportation from each city, experience in organizing sporting and cultural events, available accommodation, among other considerations such as places for training.

The list was reduced and Canada will have a marginal contribution, with Vancouver and Toronto being the ones that will host World Cup matches.

Mexico will have three venues in Mexico City, at the iconic Azteca Stadium, Monterrey at BBVA, and in Guadalajara and Akron.

The United States with 11 venues was the big winner, with a differentiating and unique aspect, and that is that in most of the cities where the tournament will be played there is a large Hispanic population, eight of them have a population of more than 15% Hispanics:

  • One of the venues will be the Hard Rock Stadium located in Miami with a 70.5% Hispanic population,
  • Los Angeles where 48.7% of the population is of Latino origin will host the SoFi Stadium,
  • Houston and Dallas, where 45.8% and 40.8%, respectively, are Hispanic or Latino will also host the 2026 World Cup.
  • Other cities like Atlanta with a Hispanic or Latino population of 4.86% will receive fans of this sport at Mercedes Benz Stadium,
  • As will Seattle with a 6.63% Latino population.

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