Race to the bottom on Qatar hotel prices and air fares once World Cup fans start to leave

For almost all the footballers in Qatar, there is still everything to play for in the World Cup 2022. But from Tuesday onwards, the results of the final matches of the group stage will see beaten teams – and fans – beginning the long journey home.

Research by The Independent shows that accommodation prices in Qatar are peaking for the tournament on Monday and Tuesday nights.

The cheapest stay for two offered through the official accommodation provider is £323 per night at the Al Mansoura apartments.

But once supporters, players and media from the countries knocked out leave, rates start to slip fast.

On Wednesday the lowest rate reduces to £192, aboard one of the cruise ships brought in to the tournament: MSC Poesia.

By Saturday 3 December, rates are in free-fall, with La Castle hotel offering rooms for £135, a rate that remains in force for much of the rest of the tournament – which ends with the final on 18 December.

By the second week in December, other hotels are cutting rates further. Le Park hotel is priced at £124 on 14 December, for example.

All these rates are for double rooms and were sourced through the official accommodation site.

Travellers to Qatar need a Hayya card – which serves as a permit to enter, identification and free public transport pass. Until 2 December they are restricted to fans with tickets for matches. But a late change in policy by the Qatari authorities means that anyone who simply wants to enjoy the atmosphere in the Gulf state can register for free and travel out.

Plenty of seats on flights to and from Doha remain on sale. For the first time since the tournament started, nonstop flights on Qatar Airways between London and Doha have fallen below £1,000 return.

Flying out and back from Gatwick on 3 December on the Qatari national carrier and back a week later is currently selling at £963, including a 30kg baggage allowance.

Cheaper deals are available for travel via Istanbul or Beirut, starting at around £600 return.

Fares and room rates could see a spike once all the Round of 16 teams are known, so fans wanting to get the best rates are urged to book now.

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