Aircraft rental for the World Cup in Qatar

Nov 24, 2022

The current World Cup in Qatar, before it starts, is already turning into one of the most scandalous world championships in its almost century-long history. In general, Qatar, as the hosts, has a lot of complaints about the organization. Separate decisions in the classical football world are simply bewildering. So, in Doha, Indian fans were seen in the form and with the flags of different teams. There have been suggestions in the European media that the organizers for the beautiful picture simply paid migrants from South Asia to impersonate fans.

Even at the opening matches, an overestimated attendance was also noticed, which exceeds the official capacity of the stadiums. For example, the opening match Qatar - Ecuador hosted the stadium "El-Bayt" with a maximum occupancy of 60 thousand spectators, but the number of 67,372 fans is on the protocol. Inflated figures were also in other matches of the tournament: England - Iran, the Netherlands - Senegal, Wales - the USA. According to the FIFA protocols, the stadiums that could hold 40,000 each received 4,000-5,000 more spectators in each of the arenas. At the same time, it was clear from the TV picture that the stadiums were not filled to capacity, and at the match between England and Iran, hundreds of empty seats could be seen at all. In the first game days, Qatar again gave reason to talk about the disregard for workers at the tournament. According to the Daily Mail, more than 200 cashiers were left without food and water for six hours before the opening ceremony of the World Cup. And the fans were left without the usual beer. FIFA two days before the start of the tournament announced a ban on the sale of alcoholic beer in stadiums in Qatar. Alcohol will be available at this World Cup only in fan zones, as well as in licensed venues. Well, what are we all about football? Let's see how business operators feel in Doha.

The main international event in the sports field caused a huge stir among fans who decided to fly to Doha on business jets. However, operators and brokers flying to the Qatari capital characterize the situation created by Qatari aviation regulators and providers as "hellish".

“Here everything is so complicated, so overregulated and “expensive” that each flight takes a lot of time and resources, complains Alexander Osit, head of the JETVIP brokerage company, which has already completed several charters for the World Cup. The serious difficulty in obtaining the right slot is associated with a strict requirement to comply with the issued slot and, in case of any violation of the schedule, a fine of up to 20,000 euros, a requirement for deposits from operators in the amount of 25,000 euros per flight, the need to have your own technician on board or conclude an agreement with a technical center in Doha, which, by the way, can serve only a few types of aircraft, and this is just a small list of problems that arise when organizing a flight to the World Cup in Doha. What about flight prices? Naturally, with such serious financial and technical requirements, the cost of renting an aircraft increases significantly. Previously predicted prices for charters can be safely multiplied by two or three. So, on average, a 40-minute flight from Dubai to Doha or back will cost at least 50,000 Euros, and finding an operator who wants to operate a flight that meets all the requirements of Doha will be a serious puzzle.

In turn, the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority (QCAA) and business jet support companies continue to warn passengers and business jet operators of the need for advance travel planning. About 1.2 million fans are expected to travel to Qatar to attend matches throughout the tournament, which kicks off in Doha on November 20 and runs through December 18, according to Universal Weather and Aviation.

“Demand for private jets and charter flights is skyrocketing as the playoff games approach, and operators are registering inquiries from organizations and individuals looking to avoid long waits and flight delays at airports,” the QCAA said in a statement.

“The volume of air traffic will put huge pressure on slot availability at Hamad International Airport (OTHH) and Doha International Airport (OTBD), as well as hotel room availability in Doha and surrounding areas,” said UAS COO James Collas. “There are so many options, including direct flights to Qatar or traveling through neighboring Middle Eastern countries such as the UAE.”

Tom Murphy, head of FBO and aircraft operations specialist at Gama Aviation Sharjah, said private jets would have to pay $5,000 per slot in OTHH and OTDB, while slot violations would be "punished" with fines of up to $25,000 if the processing time exceeds 45 minutes. But he noted that Sharjah International Airport in the neighboring UAE does not have slots and has enough parking space.

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