Dubai Marathon postponed after Qatar World Cup increases demand for hotel rooms, flights

Running event was to return for first time since pandemic restrictions forced hiatus


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Published: Wed 17 Aug 2022, 1:47 PM

Last updated: Tue 27 Sep 2022, 3:51 PM

The Dubai Marathon has been postponed due to the high demand for hotel rooms and flights witnessed in Dubai in relation to the Qatar World Cup.

Originally scheduled to be held in December 2022, Dubai’s most iconic running event will now return to action on Sunday, February 12, 2023. This is after organizers found a limited availability of hotel rooms on the back of the increased demand during the Fifa World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

This will be the first time the marathon will be conducted after the Covid-19 pandemic and is expected to attract over 30,000 participants from more than 100 countries.

“As always, we kept an eye on the situation regarding flights and accommodation not only for the elite athletes coming to compete but also for marathon tourists, which are marathon and 10km runners based overseas who enjoy coming to Dubai to test themselves on a flat, fast course,” said Event Director Peter Connerton.

With the 2022 FIFA World Cup being staged in Qatar from November 21 to December 18, thousands of football fans have decided to base themselves in Dubai during the event. This has resulted in a shortage of affordable hotel accommodation in the city.

“Our first Dubai Marathon after the lifting of the pandemic restrictions should be a celebration of running, and we wish to encourage athletes to come and enjoy everything the city has to offer. By moving the date to February, we are confident our overseas competitors will be able to avail of better flight and hotel options both in terms of choice and affordability. The date change will also allow us to provide the same for our team of overseas event officials, media representatives and spectators,” said Connerton.


Recently ranked third of all global marathons by World Athletics, the Dubai Marathon regularly attracts participants from around 145 countries and produces many of the fastest times in the sport. The last Dubai Marathon in 2020 produced 24 of the 100 fastest men’s times and 18 of the 100 fastest women’s times in history.

As usual, the marathon will be held in three categories- the full marathon, 10km run and a 4km fun run. Those interested in participating can register on the Dubai Marathon website.

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