World Cup 2022: Fan Villages in Qatar become the latest embarrassment

Fan Village near Doha, Qatar.

© Homepage Qatar 2022 Accomodation Agency

Fan Village near Doha, Qatar.

© Homepage Qatar 2022 Accomodation Agency World Cup 2022: Fan Villages in Qatar become the latest embarrassment Football supporters will be sleeping in shipping container villages because of the country’s lack of hotel accommodation.

The World Cup in Qatar starts on November 20, the host nation opening the festival of football with a game against Ecuador. However, it is not only the mid-season timing of the event and the scandal-ridden awarding of the tournament in 2010 that keep causing trouble, with a host of issues dominating the build-up. Most recently, a Qatari World Cup ambassador caused criticism in an interview with the German television station ZDF, in which he described homosexuality as “mental damage”, with Qatari officials also warning that public displays of affection, such as kissing or holding hands, are forbidden.

Nevertheless, many football supporters will travel to Qatar to support their team with special Fan Villages set up for them. Unfortunately, those are now the target of criticism with the accommodation, described on the official World Cup homepage as a ‘cabin-style and casual camping and caravan accommodation’, not precisely what travellers would expect in one of the world’s wealthiest countries. The villages are strikingly reminiscent of emergency shelters, such as those provided after earthquakes, but the rooms do have a double bed, or two single beds, a mini-fridge, air-conditioning and even a bathroom. There will also be small supermarkets in the villages and screens to watch the games.

Keeping fans away

The description of the location of the villages has also stirred interest: “All villages are ideal for fans who want to be at the heart of the tournament atmosphere, with easy connections to Doha and the stadiums,” says the official brochure. However, the first village unveiled is located in the so-called Free Zone outside Doha, with fans kept as far away as possible from the country's other infrastructure and the potential for any trouble.

The prices to stay have also been revealed with fans paying at least £200 per night in one of the container villages. With around 1.2 million guests expected in Qatar during the World Cup, the Fan Villages will at least allow for additional accommodation. Altogether, there are about 130,000 rooms in the country, which officially has only 300,000 inhabitants, as ex-pats and workers from other countries are not counted. In addition to rooms in containers, fans can also stay on cruise ships anchored off Doha during the World Cup or in one of the tent villages.

Alternative hotels

Whether a stay in a fan village or one of the other ‘alternative hotels’ is enjoyable will depend on what facilities supporters expect. There are food stations in the villages but alcohol is prohibited there, according to current information. For the World Cup, fans can only consume alcohol in hotels, restaurants and specially designated fan zones. On average, fans will be staying at the World Cup for seven days – unless they flee beforehand.


Bedroom in one of the containers at the Fan Village, Doha, Qatar.

© Homepage Qatar 2022 Fan Accomodation