FIFA world cup 2022| Do’s and don’ts in Qatar as a Westerner
The much-anticipated FIFA World Cup will return in 2022. This year, the host country is Qatar, an Arab country that prides itself on its many beaches, deserts, and magnificent buildings. Qatar is the tiniest country to host the World Cup and if you are planning to land in the Middle East with football, take the time to find out what the beautiful country of Arabia has to offer. We have created a final guide for footie fans who will travel from all over the world to support their country at the 2022 Soccer World Cup in November – December 2022.
From the best things you can do in Qatar, what to expect when you arrive, and to adhere to local customs, laws, and contextual worldview, read our top tips and recommendations for all footie fans.
Moving or visiting anywhere unfamiliar, it’s always a good idea to learn a few basic dos and don’ts of your new environment. Don’t be fooled by Qatar’s very modern appearance; this is still a very traditional society that prides itself on its heritage. Despite the rapid social and economic growth, Qatari still wants to hold on to their culture and values.
Here are some helpful hints for navigating life in Qatar;
- Use greetings and formalities as they are essential when dealing with Arabians. It is considered discourteous to start any conversation or request without at least saying ‘Good Morning.’ Make an effort to learn about your host country’s ways, traditions, customs, and religion.
- Dress modestly in Qatar, which is a Muslim motherland with conservative dress systems. Loose trousers are acceptable for women but must avoid short skirts and shorts, strap low-cut tops, and transparent dresses.
- Hail Karwa, Al Million, and Alijarah green taxis are safe, clean, and metered. Most drivers speak English. When ordering a taxi by phone, do it well in advance because delays may occur.
- Negotiating with shop owners, which is common here in the suburbs. Always object to the actual offer at a lower price than you think you can pay and work less to what you wish to use.
- Note the different calculators and categories of women in banks and services.
- Remember, in most Arabs, there are gender differences, and many women are not considered to be independent in public. And, again, this is an indication, not entirely, so check each condition for its suitability. If you are unsure and have a woman in your group, let her constantly contact you.
- Wipe off all your trash on the beach. Although you will find many public beaches covered in garbage, you must not add to the problem.
- Enjoy Qatari nights as it is one of the safest places in the world. During the hot summer and Ramadan, you will see people around the city until very early in the morning.
- Remember that the Gulf Arabs are known for their hospitality. To accept the invitations and let your Qatari host or friend entertain you. There is no plan or expectation; they have a generous spirit.
- Drink more water than other beverages. At temperatures above 40 ° C, you need at least two liters a day. Deep yellow urine is a sign of weight loss.
- Use sunscreen with high-quality properties on exposed skin all year round. Don’t forget the soles of your foot when wearing sandals! Children and people of color need a hat or cap.
- Remember the cool air, which can cool you in restaurants, theaters, and supermarkets. Take a light coat, jersey, or shawl as protection.
- Look or look at people closely no matter how you dress their costumes! This common sense is essential in a society where modesty in dress and grooming is compulsory.
- Ask an Arab lady for details or clues if you are a man. Respect the fact that some Arab women are independent people in public places. However, they are very willing to help other women, so let the women talk if you are in a mixed group!
- Get upset if a Muslim refuses to shake your hand. The handshake is usually limited to members of the opposite sex. It is not intended to be, but simply a religious ban that applies to Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
- Take a photo without the permission of people (including police or armed forces) or sensitive sites. Arab women and many older people deny taking pictures.
- Annoyed if a visitor/contact is late – remember, time is very long in Qatar.
- Use your left hand to eat with your fingers and Muslims. However, the right hand is considered appropriate as the left hand is kept for personal hygiene.
- Never sit with the soles of your shoes or feet facing towards your Qatari host. It is considered very humiliating and insulting. Equivalently, don’t sit with your back to other guests.
- Don’t wear bikinis on public beaches, as they tend to be more conservative. However, bikinis are fine on private hotel beaches.
- Point the soles of your shoes directly towards anyone in a meeting or gathering; this is a sign of disrespect. As a foreigner, any mistakes in social etiquette will be overlooked, but your effort to understand and respect local customs will be noticed and appreciated.
- Proselytizing is illegal, and you could be deported for trying to convert any Qatari to another religion. So the general rule is both politics and religion can be broached but with caution and sensitivity.
- Don’t drink too much alcohol so that your behavior is affected in public. Alcohol in Qatar is strictly regulated, and there is zero-tolerance for drink-driving, drunkenness, or rowdy behavior.
- Don’t go barefoot in the sea where stonefish lie camouflaged along the shoreline. Although rare, the poisonous defense mechanism causes excruciating pain and needs a doctor’s visit. Also, be on the lookout for jellyfish, especially in the summer months.
Qatar does not eat pork, so it isn’t easy to find pork meat throughout the country. In addition, bringing pork to Qatar from other countries is strictly prohibited.
The staple dish you have to try is Machboos, a Qatari dish consisting of meat, onions, rice, and veggies mixed with Arab spices. Pop into local restaurants to indulge in this specialty and get an authentic taste of the Middle East.