EghtesadOnline: No airline has so far submitted flight schedule to Qatar for the World Cup 2022, Maqsoud Asadi-Samani, secretary of the Association of Iranian Airlines said.
“The only local airline which currently flies to the neighboring country is IranAir. Therefore, the advertisements about World Cup travel packages are a scam.”
Noting that ticket sales would start as soon as the World Cup tours are launched, Asadi-Samani added, “World Cup 2022 will kick off in November, which is a low season and domestic flights are fewer.”
Therefore, local airlines will have the capacity to increase the number of Iran-Qatar flights. As we speak, we have the capacity to operate 35 flights per week to Qatar, he added.
“Increase in the number of flights during the World Cup demands planning and coordination with the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism. The sport event can provide an opportunity for Iran to attract tourists,” he was quoted as saying by ILNA.
As per an agreement with the government of Qatar, over the course of the World Cup “some 400 flights form Kish to Doha will be undertaken. Moreover four cruise ships will be used for travel from Kish to Doha and back,” Saeed Mohammad, secretary of the Supreme Council of Free Trade and Special Economic Zones of Iran was quoted by IRNA as saying in March.
He noted that the Ministry of Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts plans to host an estimated 100,000 tourists for the World Cup 2022.
Mohammad added, that the ministries of culture, heritage, tourism and Handicrafts; roads and urban development; sports and youth affairs; the Economy Ministry plus the Ports and Maritime Organization of Iran have mobilized for the key sporting event.
Iran has said it will waive visa fees for spectators of the 2022 World Cup in a bid to attract some of the football fans arriving in the neighboring Persian Gulf state.
“The government agreed to make visas free for spectators of the World Cup in Qatar who wish to visit Iran,” tweeted the spokesman of the Iranian government, Ali Bahadori-Jahromi. “This move seeks to encourage tourists to visit Iran during the World Cup and boost the tourism industry.”
Qatari Transport Minister Jassim bin Saif al-Sulaiti recently visited Iran and met with his Iranian counterpart Rostam Ghassemi to make arrangements ahead of the international event.
“Iran's contribution to the World Cup will be in the areas of air and sea transport and accommodation,” Ghassemi said.
“We also plan to offer the foreign visitors and tourists during their stay in Iran the opportunity to visit our tourist attractions.”
To encourage travel, the tourism ministry had said earlier that visas could be waived for visitors from Qatar during the World Cup.
Visitors can apply for free single or multi-entry passes for 20 days during that period, the ministry said
The 2022 FIFA World Cup is the 22nd running of the FIFA World Cup competition, contested by the national teams of the member associations of FIFA.
It is scheduled to take place in Qatar from November 21 to December 18 2022. This will be the first World Cup ever to be held in the Middle East, and will be the second in Asia after the 2002 tournament was held in South Korea and Japan.