The FIFA World Cup is fast approaching and fans are excited to fly off to Doha for kick off on November 20.
But, those lucky football fans who managed to bag a ticket to watch the tournament in Qatar are at risk of not being allowed into the country,
The State of Qatar recently announced that for the duration of the World Cup period, from November 20 to December 18, entry to the country will be limited to only those who have a ‘Hayya card’.
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The card will be used instead of the traditional Visa system – and they'll only be available to those with match tickets or as a plus one to ticket holders.
To help explain what a Hayya card is and how you can get one, Jacob Wedderburn-Day at travel company Stasher, answered your questions.
What is the Hayya card?
The Hayya card is a personalised ID card which will be required by every person travelling to Qatar from 10 November to 23 December.
The card will act as an entry permit to the country and no standard visas would be issued for Qatar during this time.
Once you’re in Qatar, the Hayya card, along with a valid match ticket, will also be required to enter stadiums.
It will also give you free access to public transport while you’re there.
How do I apply for a Hayya card?
Currently, the Hayya card is only available to visitors who have FIFA World Cup match tickets.
Those visiting Qatar are encouraged to apply for their Hayya card as soon as they have confirmed their travel details, as it is expected that the application process will get busier as the World Cup tournament approaches in late November.
All applicants will need to provide their personal information, a copy of their passport, emergency contact details and their match ticket application number.
International visitors will also need to provide proof of their accommodation for the duration of their stay to receive their Hayya card.
What if I don’t have a match ticket?
The Qatar government recently launched the Hayya with Me initiative which allows a World Cup ticket holder with a Hayya card to invite three guests to join them in Qatar, even if they don’t have match tickets.
The three guests will need to have valid passports and provide the details of their accommodation during their stay.
Hayya ticket holders can obtain three voucher codes on the official portal – which they can then send to their guests to apply for their own Hayya cards.
Do children need a Hayya card too?
Yes, children will need to have a Hayya card too.
Children who have match tickets can be added as a dependent on an adult’s Hayya account and each person will receive their own Hayya card before departure.
How much does a Hayya card cost?
The Hayya card is free for those who have match tickets to the World Cup.
For guests who don’t have match tickets but have been invited as a part of the Hayya with Me initiative, each Hayya pass will cost QAR 500 (about £124).
Where can I travel with a Hayya card?
The Hayya card is a requirement for everyone who wants to visit Qatar during the tournament, but it can also be used to enter neighbouring countries.
Oman, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Jordan have announced that Hayya cardholders will be granted a multiple entry visa for the duration of the World Cup.
Always check the current FCDO recommendations before traveling at gov.uk.
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