Qatar’s World Cup accommodation continues to anger visiting fans with conditions having been blasted as ‘ridiculous’ and ‘not OK’ at one site where a stay costs around £185 per night. An Iran supporter insists his room is like a ‘tin can’ having flown in to support his country who face England in their Group B opener on Monday.
The first ever winter World Cup gets underway on Sunday evening with hosts Qatar facing Ecuador but Milad Mahmooditar is one of many fans to have been left outraged at the state of his accommodation in Doha, where temperatures will reach highs of 30 degrees over the first week of the tournament.
Some supporters staying at the Rawdat Al Jahhaniya fan village have been subjected to particularly disappointing standards, with Mr Mahmooditar fuming about his cabin – which is in a metal container – to the Daily Mail. The 32-year-old said: “It is ridiculous that I have to pay so much money to stay in this tin can.
“I am 6 feet tall and my bed is too small. There is no room to move and the air-conditioning unit makes so much noise that you cannot sleep. The bathroom isn’t much of a bathroom and you can hardly move without falling over the small table or kicking the bed.
“I have paid around $200 for each night and I know that for $100 I can get a five-star hotel with full board. This is not the way to treat visitors to any country. We have paid so much money to get here. I’m a businessman, but I’m not rich.
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“I’ve spent a lot of money to come here. I expect to be treated much better than this. I am sorry about this and I am angry. Maybe it’s okay for the Qatari people who are rich and live in luxury houses for. Me, this is not okay.”
Portacabins and tents have been set up in fan zones in the desert outside of Doha’s centre. The Rawdat Al Jahhaniya accommodation base is close to the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, where Wales play the United States on Monday. The arena will also host Wales vs England on November 29.
The tennis court and cinema screen that had been advertised among the facilities have not yet been spotted. There have also been complaints raised about an excess of rubble and rubbish around the site.
An unnamed Wales fan added to the Mail: “I probably would’ve paid double the money to come and see my country play. But really? Is this what they’re going to put us in? Metal containers with no air, very little light and like a shoebox? There is no room to move or to store your luggage. A tiny table can just about hold a bowl of cornflakes.”
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Around 1.2million visitors are expected into Qatar as a result of the World Cup which has led to a rush for new accommodation to be built to house fans. As of March this year, around 80 per cent of the country’s 30,000 hotel rooms had been booked by FIFA for teams, officials and sponsors.
Two contractors at Ras Bu Fontas, another fan site which will host around 6,000 supporters a day, have also raised concerns about conditions. Staying there can cost up to £370 a night but there are worries about the comfort of the cabins.
One said to The Times: “It has been hell. The air con in the cabin barely works and sounds like a [fighter jet] is taking off. Even if you have it on all the time during the day it is still 27C. You can’t have it on at night because it is so noisy.”
The other added of the single beds in the cabins: “They are rock hard so you might as well sleep on the floor. I have never been somewhere so uncomfortable. We have been here for 10 days and it is a nightmare. It might be OK if you want to rough it for a night or two, but any longer would be dreadful.”