Ahead of the 2022 World Cup, Qatar has prepared more than 6,000 cruise ship cabins for football fans looking for an alternative place to stay.
This is part of plans to boost tourism to the country, spearheaded by Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA).
The QTA also believe this will benefit Qatar Airways as well as local businesses and the economy.
Hassan Al Ibrahim is the Chief Tourism Development Officer at QTA and feels that the cruise ship cabins will be overwhelmingly beneficial to Qatar; “Our participation with Cruise Arabia in Cruise Shipping Miami has been extremely fruitful, substantially contributing to our efforts to promote Qatar as a world-class tourism hub.
“Through Cruise Arabia we aim to position Qatar and the Arabian Gulf as a premier cruise destination, thus reinforcing Qatar’s position on the world tourism map as a premium destination for authentic experiences, business facilitation, and family-focused recreation.
“We want to promote Qatar as a key maritime destination, and capitalize on the already substantial cruise traffic in the Gulf, which Qatar is currently unable to support.
“Since Qatar has ambitious plans to establish a number of ports across the country; namely the new $7-billion port project, we are well placed to take advantage of this tourism sector.
“The project is intended to better position Qatar to benefit from the expected regional growth in cruise traffic, when the container and vehicle carrier traffic, as well as general cargo traffic moves to the new port over 2015 and 2016.”
The World Cup is seven years away – if you’re going to see the festivities for yourself, would you like to do it from a cruise ship?