World Cup 2022: charter aircraft from Dubai to Doha likely to cost upwards of $18,000

Football fans are scrambling for flights and accommodation for the tournament in Qatar in November

DC Aviation Al-Futtaim will launch special charter flights to Qatar to enable fans to attend the 2022 Fifa World Cup. Photo: DC Aviation Al-Futtaim
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DC Aviation Al-Futtaim will offer special charter flights from Dubai to Doha for football fans attending the 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar.

Thousands of fans are seeking travel solutions to attend the tournament, which kicks off on November 21, with match tickets already on sale.

Prices for flights during the World Cup have soared because of limited availability when it comes to airline tickets and accommodation in Qatar.

A one-way charter flight from Dubai to Doha is expected to cost more than $18,000, Holger Ostheimer, managing director of DC Aviation Al-Futtaim (DCAF), told The National.

“Typically, for a small group of four to six passengers travelling on a private jet for the World Cup period, the cost could be anywhere from $18,000 [for the aircraft] upwards, one-way, depending on the type and size of aircraft,” he said.

DCAF is "in a position to fly daily, subject to aircraft availability", he said.

"We have seen a threefold increase in enquires on this route for the period between November and December and this is expected to spike as we move closer to the tournament."

A return flight from Abu Dhabi to Doha with Etihad Airways in November is currently priced at about Dh5,600 ($1,524), according to the airline's website. Emirates is not currently accepting bookings for Dubai-Doha flights during the World Cup period.

However, an economy class flight from Dubai to Doha with Qatar Airways on November 22, returning to Dubai on November 28, is currently priced at Dh1,495 on the airline's website.

Qatar Airways this week announced it is boosting the frequency of its flights to Abu Dhabi, with three flights a day from Doha to the UAE capital from July 10.

The special charter flights from DCAF, which is based at Dubai's Al Maktoum International Airport, can accommodate a range of group sizes.

Passengers have access to 1,300 square metres of exclusive lounge area that features a conference room and showering facilities, DCAF said.

DCAF is a joint venture between Stuttgart-based DC Aviation, the largest operator of business jets in Germany and a leading operator in Europe, and Dubai-based Al-Futtaim, the privately owned UAE business conglomerate.

Because of a lack of accommodation in Qatar, many fans are expected to stay in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and other Gulf cities and then fly to Doha for matches.

“There has been record-breaking demand, globally and from this region,” Alan Holt, managing director of Expat Sport, the UAE sales agent of matchday hospitality for the Qatar World Cup, told The National in March.

“The most popular travel option for fans from the UAE is still flights. Expat Sport is chartering flights from Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

“With the flight time being only one hour from here, UAE fans want travel solutions that involve a quick turnaround."

Another option for fans is to stay on cruise liners, which will complement Qatar's 130,000 hotel rooms. About 1.5 million visitors are expected to attend the month-long tournament.

MSC Cruises has been chartered by Qatar’s Supreme Committee to deliver two ships to be used as temporary accommodation.

Meanwhile, Qatar's World Cup organisers have unveiled camps in the desert for football fans.

The prefabricated cabins in special "fan villages" in three locations start at $207 for a two-person cabin, with two single beds or one double on offer. They feature a bathroom, fridge, Wi-Fi and housekeeping, with restaurants and takeaways available in the village.

Updated: May 26, 2022, 8:24 AM