Soccer

World Cup set for extortionate prices as fans to be charged £80 a beer

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World Cup fans are to be charged £80 for a beer in some Qatar venues to watch the semi-final and final. The Middle Eastern state is highly religious with a ‘sin tax’ applied to all alcohol sales during the tournament while bars and hotels are charging extortionate entry fees to watch games as supporters look for places to watch matches away from the grounds. 

Fans have already been largely put off travelling to Qatar to take in the World Cup in person as a result of the costs associated with it. There is a shortage of accommodation within the country itself meaning the best options for people are in desert camps or neighbouring countries, costing match goers hundreds of pounds a night. 

Those who do decide to make the trip can expect to pay hundreds more if they would like a drink while they are there given the country’s laws. It is illegal to drink in public places or to be caught drunk in Qatar while a ‘sin tax’ has been levied against alcohol to discourage people from buying it. 

Bars and hotels are charging cover fees to allow people to come in and watch games on TV with some alcoholic beverages included in the price. A new report by the i newspaper has detailed the situation at the Champions Sports Bar in Doha’s Marriott Hotel, where fans will be charged up to the equivalent of £80 a bottle to watch the semi-finals and finals. 

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equivalent

Supporters will need to pay around £48 to watch group games with the price coming with three drinks. It will therefore cost around £16 a drink with Budweiser, Corona or house wine available. The fee is for just three hours (one fixture) and people would be forced to fork out the same amount again if they wanted to stay for another match. 

The price will rise to £180 for the knockout stages before reaching £240 for the semi-finals and finals with fans paying the equilivant of £80 for a bottle of beer or a glass of wine.

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There is some other options available to supporters which may end up working out cheaper. Doha will host a number of fan parks where Budweiser will be available with the biggest, Al Bidda, holding 40,000 people. However, given the prices in the city’s bars they are expected to be incredibly busy and hence capacity could be a big issue. 

The World Cup in Qatar is certain to be a unique experience for both fans and players – but the evidence increasingly suggests that it could be a particularly unhappy one. 

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