In accordance with a finalized regulation, beer will be served alongside alcoholic beverages to soccer fans in stadiums and fan zones in the Muslim-majority nation of Qatar during the World Cup.
FIFA and the event’s organisers have agreed to serve alcoholic drink during matches during the Qatar World Cup
According to FIFA, on Saturday, spectators will be able to purchase Budweiser beer with alcohol within the eight stadium complexes—but not at concession booths on the concourse—only during the official “Fan Festival” in the evenings. That is taking place at a park in the heart of Doha.
Since February 2021, game tickets for Qatari stadiums that promise access to champagne, wine, liquor, and beer for hospitality clients have been available for purchase as part of corporate packages that provide “luxury beverages.” Just 11 weeks before the first match, the beer ban that would affect the majority of spectators was revealed, and it finally satisfied a demand that has existed since Qatar launched its 12-year-old bid to host the first World Cup in the Middle East.
Since 1986, Budweiser has been the only World Cup beer brand. In 2011, after Qatar was selected as the host nation, parent company AB InBev extended the agreement with FIFA through 2022. Budweiser with alcohol will be served “inside the stadium boundary prior to kickoff and after the final whistle,” FIFA announced on Saturday.
According to soccer’s international governing body, Budweiser Zero will be available to ticket holders within the stadium bowl. Budweiser will be sold at the FIFA Fan Festival starting at 6.30 p.m. The organizing committee for Qatar and AB InBev declined to comment on the situation on Saturday.
Although it is exclusively provided in hotels, restaurants, and bars with a license, alcohol is more readily available in Qatar than in some other Middle Eastern countries. It is forbidden to eat it somewhere else. Nevertheless, Qatar had to slacken its prohibition on alcohol for the 29-day competition beginning on November 20.
More than 1 million people are anticipated to visit the tiny Emirate, including fans from 31 other countries. At soccer matches, notably the 2019 Club World Cup featuring the then-champions of Europe, South America, and México, Monterrey, and Flamengo, Qatar has tested its alcohol policies.
Not for the first time, World Cup hosts have loosened their alcohol policies. Under pressure from FIFA, Brazilian lawmakers passed a special law before the 2014 World Cup that exempted the event from the prohibition on the sale of alcohol in stadiums.
Qatar won a World Cup hosting a competition where competitors were obliged to follow FIFA’s agreements with commercial partners, defeating four competing bids, including the United States. These World Cup contracts included AB InBev and MATCH Hospitality, who sold corporate packages during the FIFA hosting vote in 2010.
One year later, both companies signed up again with FIFA. “It is important to remember that the entire FIFA World Cup bid process is designed to deliver the kind of World Cup experience that all fans from around the world have a reason to expect and look forwards to,” MATCH Hospitality executive chairman Jaime Byrom said in a recent interview with The Associated Press.
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