As the countdown begins to the Middle East’s very first Federation Internationale de Football Association’s (FIFA) World Cup, host country Qatar now has British soccer star David Beckham promoting the destination for a stopover break.
The campaign features Beckham on a whirlwind trip to Qatar for 48 hours indulging in a wide range of activities from exploring the spice markets of Souq Waqif, soaking up local street art, cooking tacos to camping in the desert and discovering Doha on a motorbike.
In 2019, Qatar’s transit traffic stood at 40 million passengers, courtesy national carrier Qatar Airways. However, the country only received 2.1 million visitors — a mere 5 percent of the number of people transiting through the country.
Through this campaign, Qatar Tourism seeks to raise awareness of what it dubs is the, “the world’s best value stopover packages.”
Passengers can book themselves at a four-star hotel for as little as $14.00 per person, per night, Philip Dickinson, vice president of international markets for Qatar Tourism had said speaking to Skift in an earlier interview.
The campaign is aimed to encourage the millions who transit through Qatar every year to follow in David’s footsteps, Akbar Al Baker, chairman of Qatar Tourism and group CEO of Qatar Airways, said in a press statement.
“We have something for everyone at incredible value, whether it’s sun, sea, sand, rich heritage and culture, or a modern and fun city break,” Baker said.
Qatar expects to bring in 1.5 million fans during the 28 days that the World Cup is scheduled to take place in the country. FIFA estimates that the Qatar World Cup returns could reach $6 billion, Nasser Al-Khater, CEO of the Qatar 2022 World Cup, said this week while speaking to Qatar News Agency.
Qatar had unveiled Beckham as its global ambassador for the World Cup in a deal reportedly worth $277 million. Beckham had however come under fire for failing to speak out about human rights abuses in Qatar.