Dubai: Are you a football fan excited about watching the world cup matches live in Qatar? If so, regardless of whether you are a resident of the UAE, or visiting Qatar from other parts of the world, there are several services that have been designed in the UAE to help fans easily enjoy the world cup matches, while also visiting the UAE.
From Dubai World Central (DWC) alone, approximately 120 ‘match day’ flights will fly between Doha and Dubai everyday. There are also several chartered flights that are expected to operate between the two countries.
So, if you want to make the most of the World Cup season, here is all you need to know about the services that can enhance your experience.
1. Special visit visa to the UAE for Hayya Card holders
Football fans from around the world can apply for a special visit visa to the UAE if they are holders of the ‘Hayya card’.
People who have stadium tickets to the world cup matches will need the Hayya Card to enter Qatar and access the stadiums. It is also important to have the card to access free public transport within Qatar during the World Cup. Another benefit is that you can get a UAE visit visa, valid for 90 days for just Dh100. To know more about how you can apply for the visa, read our detailed guide here.
2. Travel easy to the airport through public transport options
If you are travelling out of DWC, you can also take advantage of a dedicated bus service, which will be launched for football fans.
According to Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), which launched the new route, buses will leave every 30 minutes, 24 hours a day, and seven days a week during the World Cup. Buses will start from DWC to Ibn Battuta and Expo City Metro stations every 30 minutes. This route will only be operational until December 20.
These flights will take you to the match you wish to see, and return to the UAE on the same day.
These match-day shuttle flights will be relatively more cost-effective compared to standard airfares, but football fans have been advised to book tickets in advance and not wait until the last minute to book tickets.
3. Baggage allowance – no checked-in luggage
You will need to travel light if you are taking the match-day shuttle flight.
If you are taking a flydubai flight, according to DWC, the baggage allowance for match day shuttle flights is limited to cabin baggage and only strollers and wheelchairs will be accepted as checked-in luggage.
Fans must hold a valid match ticket and Hayya card to be accepted at check-in for the match day shuttle flights from DWC.
For Air Arabia, passengers on board the shuttle flights will be entitled to 10kg of hand baggage each.