The first-of-its-kind event will give visitors a chance to discover the latest innovations in agriculture and environmental conservation.
The Ministry of Interior (MOI), Qatar Airways, and the Expo 2023 Doha Committee are currently in talks to permit travellers through Hamad International Airport (HIA) to visit the expo, which will take place from October 2023 to March 2024.
Muhammad Al Khouri, the secretary general of Expo 2023 Doha, said talks with MOI are ongoing so that people who are in transit can visit the expo. “We are working out with the Ministry of Interior and Qatar Airways so there could be tourism promotion for the expo.”
“Instead of spending seven to eight hours at the airport, they can visit the expo. This comes within the efforts to promote the country’s tourism and the event’s global promotion. We will take advantage of our partners including Qatar Airways which flies to over 160 destinations,” Al Khouri told the media on the sidelines of a press conference.
The six-month-long event will take place at Al Bidda Park from 2 October 2023 to 28 March 2024 and is expected to draw close to three million visitors.
Passengers in transit of eight hours or longer currently have a variety of tour options.
‘Discover Doha’ is a three-hour coach city tour that takes visitors around Doha and allows them to explore the Corniche, the Museum of Islamic Art, Dhow Harbour, Katara Cultural Village, and Souq Waqif; and ‘Discover the Desert and Inland Sea’, a four-hour private tour that gives travellers the chance to see one of only three locations in the world where the Arabian desert meets the azure ocean.
Discover the Art of the Airport, Discover Squash at the Airport, and Discover Golf Simulator at the Airport are three exclusive transit tours that HIA is offering for travel times of four hours or longer.
All transit arrangements are handled by Discover Qatar, a division of Qatar Airways that handles destination management.
Qatar’s hotel occupancy rate is ‘reasonable’
Meanwhile, Akbar Al Baker, chairman of Qatar Tourism and CEO of Qatar Airways Group, said Qatar has done better than set benchmarks despite the anticipated slowdown in the hospitality industry following the nation’s hosting of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
During a press conference to announce the launch of the Hayya platform as a central visa application portal, Al Baker said the hotel occupancy rate in Qatar is still within reason at 65 to 70%.
“Immediately after the tournament (FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022), like in every other country where FIFA has taken place, the preceding months are always low in hotel occupancy rates,” Al Baker said.
“We have been doing better. We are in high 65 to 70 percent occupancy, which is really not bad. But you also keep in mind that because of FIFA, we built many infrastructures in the hospitality industry. Now, it is our job to ensure that in the coming months, we ensure that the occupancy rates go up,” he added.