Tuesday 26 Sep 2023

Heading to Qatar for World Cup? Help is at hand for Goans



If you are a Goan and you intend to travel to Qatar for the FIFA World Cup and finding accommodation is a problem, do not worry. Help is round the corner.

Goan Social Workers Qatar (GSWQ) a group of Goans involved in social service, have created and dedicated a new WhatsApp Group exclusively for “Goan Fans travelling to Doha for Qatar 2022 FIFA Football World Cup''.

Disclosing information about the decision to form the group, Joao de Sa said the group will help Goans who are coming to Qatar from various quarters.

Goan football fans traveling to Qatar will need to apply for the Hayya digital card. This will act as an entry permit to Qatar and offer a host of benefits, including free public transport on match days. Qatar residents who are planning to attend matches will also need to apply for Hayya.

As part of the Hayya approval process, fans will need to confirm where they are staying during the tournament. If fans are planning to stay with family and friends, their host will need to register their property.

“Over the past few weeks and months we have been flooded with pleas to find accommodations and tickets from Goans based in different parts of the world and who are eager to come to Qatar for the World Cup to be held in November December period,” said Joao, who hails from Cortalim and is based in the host country for almost three decades.

Only citizens and residents of Qatar can avail of the option of hosting relatives and friends who are visiting for the World Cup. These friends can stay with them and the host will have to register the guests along with their passport numbers and unit details. A resident/citizen can host up to 10 individuals during the tournament.

Joao said the group will help the Goans in terms of accommodation in the best way possible but regarding requests for tickets he said the group will not be able to help much.

“We request Goan fans to buy their tickets online through the designated website,” said Joao.

He also said that the group will assist Goan fans in local transportation and in visiting places of tourist interest in and around Qatar. They will be of assistance in case of emergencies too, he said.

“The main aim of the group is to make Goans fans’ stay in Qatar a memorable one,” added Joao, who is on the Executive Committee of Indian Sports Centre, a sports body registered under the Indian embassy in Qatar.

The other members of the group, who have spent varying period of time in Qatar and are well-versed with country include, Carol Gonsalves, Perpetua Pereira, Tina Fernandes, Seby Mascarenhas, Martin Mascarenhas, Anton Joao Vaz, Maurice Pereira and George Fernandes.

Qatar based Goa-born Antonio Vas, a Portuguese citizen, is also looking forward to helping Goans and also Portuguese fans in Qatar.

“We have formed a group ‘Goan Fans for QATAR 2022’ and are trying to help Goans coming from different parts of the World Cup to Qatar in different aspects ranging from accommodation, assisting fans’ stay in Qatar, local transportation and emergencies.”

“Some of the group members are part of the Portugal Fans Qatar group and we hope to interact with fans of Portugal travelling to Qatar and help them in whatever possible way,” said Antonio.

Joao informed that the membership of the WhatsApp group is open only for Goan fans holding Qatar 2022 match tickets and for volunteers from the Qatar Goan Community. 

The World Cup will take place at eight stadiums and is expected to be the most compact edition of the tournament in modern history.

Fans are invited to join the group through: https://chat.whatsapp.com/IbSJSxpwxiBDDvILqXEpzw

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