The Qatar Railways Company "Qatar Rail" announced Doha Metro readiness for the upcoming FIFA Arab Cup 2021 football tournament. The Arab Cup represents an opportunity to test the metro readiness for the 2022 World Cup, which Qatar is looking forward to hosting next year.
The Doha Metro provides football fans with a seamless transportation experience that takes them to the stadium with ease, away from traffic congestion, which usually constitutes a significant obstacle in large public events.
As part of these preparations, it was announced by the Doha Metro that service hours will be extended between November 30 to December 18. And it will be from 06:00am until 03:00 am from Saturday to Thursday and from 09:00 am until 03: 00 am on Fridays.
To meet the additional demand for the service, 6 car trains will be operating on the Red Line for the first time. The Doha Metro train fleet, which includes 110 trains, will also be fully operational.
It is expected that the metro stations will witness a large turnout of the public, especially in the stations located near the stadiums where the tournament will be held. There are three stadiums conveniently located at walking distance from the nearest metro station. The public can go to the Stadium 974 through Ras Bu Abboud Station, Education City Stadium through Education City Station, and Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium through Riffa Station.
The organizing committee of the tournament will provide shuttle services to transport fans from stations to stadiums that are not directly connected to the metro network. Fans also can go to Al Bayt Stadium through Lusail QNB station, Al Thumama Stadium through the Free City station, and Al Janoub Stadium through Al Wakra station.
During the tournament, fans will be able to use the metro services through the Hayya card (Fan ID) to travel throughout the tournament in Standard class between November 29 and December 19.
Qatar Rail has also recently released a metro travel Guide to the stadiums, which is a digital guide that provides information on how to reach the stadiums by metro. The guide is done based on dates of the matches according to the schedule. The guide can be obtained by scanning the QR code in Metro stations and on the digital screens inside the stations.
Qatar Rail aims to provide a seamless travel experience with First Mile and Last Mile transport solutions such as metrolink and metroexpress, which facilitate the public's access to metro stations. This is in addition to providing “Park and Ride " facilities around metro stations, which allow the public to park their cars and continue their journeys on the metro at stations where these services are available.
In addition, cooperation has been made with the SCDL and the tournament's organizing committee to place directional signages at all Doha Metro stations to facilitate the movement of fans while they are at the stations to reach the tournament stadiums.
The final match of the Arab Cup coincides with the National Day of the State of Qatar, and this was considered when developing operational plans to ensure the ease of movement of fans and transportation during that day, which is expected to witness a wide demand for metro services.
The Company stresses the importance of the safety and security of the fans and advises customers to plan their journeys in advance and to be present at the stations early to ensure their arrival before the match time and to abide by the instructions of the customer service staff present at the stations and on the trains.
The Arab Cup represents a very important opportunity to measure the operational readiness of the network in light of the presence of large numbers of fans who will look forward to going to the matches and at the same time, the key destinations in Doha where they can have an enjoyable experience.