It’s the hottest ticket of the year.
The Super Bowl is the most anticipated sporting event on the calendar and getting tickets to attend the game is both incredibly difficult and very expensive. This year’s game is no different.
Going into the AFC and NFC Championship Games, Super Bowl XLIX tickets to get into University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona on February 1 started at $2,000 and climbed all the way up to almost $20,000 for the most expensive seat in the house. Proving that the market is powered by the law of supply and demand, face value for the cheapest ticket is $800 and $1,900 for the most expensive one.
But if you’ve got the know-how, if you have the dough, and if you have a connection or two, your dream of attending a Super Bowl can become a reality. Afterall, the game is played in front of a capacity crowd every year, isn’t it?
University of Phoenix Stadium can seat 71,000 for football games, so here’s everything you need to know about how to score a ticket.
How Super Bowl Tickets Are Distributed
The NFL and its 32 teams control 100 percent of the tickets printed for the Super Bowl. All the tickets to the game are spoken for before they even go on sale.
According to the Star Ledger, Super Bowl tickets are conservatively distributed.
The National Football League controls everything about the championship game, including the price of a ticket and their distribution. NFL officials keep about a quarter of the tickets for themselves, and they divvy them up between their partners and sponsors and sell thousands to the media, according to NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy.
Here’s how 71,000 tickets are broken down:
* Each participating team is entitled to 17.5 percent — 35 percent total — of all Super Bowl tickets (24,850 seats).
* The host team (Arizona Cardinals) receives 5 percent (3,550).
* The remaining 29 NFL teams are issued 34.8 percent — 1.2 percent each — of the tickets (24,708).
* The NFL claims 25.2 percent (17,892).
Buy on the NFL Ticket Exchange
The NFL governs a ticket exchange powered by Ticketmaster that facilitates the legal sale of authentic tickets. It is marketed as a fan-to-fan resale service. As of Jan. 16, the NFL Ticket Exchange had 1,348 ticket listings offered from $2,462 to $16,088 each.
Other Websites Selling Super Bowl Tickets
As is the case when you are buying anything online, make sure you are dealing with a reputable business. A good rule of thumb when offering up credit card information or purchasing anything from a website is to be careful. That being said, there are some well-known ticket brokers online that were offering Super Bowl ducats.
Most were claiming they had more than 2,000 tickets available for the game as well as all sorts of tickets to other swanky Super Bowl week events like Media Day (from $46) and the Rolling Stone Magazine Party ($1,012).
Some sites offering deals like this are:
Ticket scalping is legal in Arizona, so if you make your way to University of Phoenix Stadium on gameday, you can purchase a seat from a scalper outside the venue. However, law enforcement warns that you should exhibit extreme caution when purchasing scalped tickets. Be on the lookout for price gouging, counterfeit tickets and other scams that can send you home unhappy.
The NFL has a handy primer for knowing what to watch out for here:
Super Bowl tickets are the Holy Grail for die-hard NFL football fans. To help eliminate the sale of fake tickets the NFL has incorporated several security devices built into official Super Bowl tickets. Some of the overt security devices include holograms, custom laser cutouts, thermachromic ink and a specially-made gloss varnish. A counterfeit ticket may be missing one or even several of these or other security features. The NFL also provides you with a secure, official resale marketplace to purchase your Super Bowl tickets, the NFL Ticket Exchange. Buying online from a non-NFL affiliate may be risky since there is no way of knowing if a ticket is real until game time. Even if a ticket looks real, it may be one that has been reported lost or stolen, which means the person holding it will not be granted entry into the stadium.
You Can Run for Office
According to the Arizona Republic, the NFL traditionally hooks up local politicians with tickets at face value each year. Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey plans to attend, according to the paper.
Start Thinking About Next Year
The next three Super Bowls will be held in the following locations:
* 2016: Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, Calif.
* 2017: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas
* 2018: Vikings Stadium, Minneapolis, Minn.