SPORTSMUSICSHOWS
Jackie Berkery
Published: Jan. 10, 2019

Your Essential Buying Guide for Super Bowl LIII



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So, you’re thinking about going to the Super Bowl. Right on. These might be the most precious—and expensive—tickets you ever buy, so you’ll want to take extra care to make the right choices.

When’s the best time to buy Rams vs. Patriots Super Bowl tickets? How do I know my tickets are the real deal? Big questions. We’ve got your answers. Read on to learn all about Super Bowl LIII and how to score tickets.


A Whole Different Ball Game

The business of the Super Bowl is unlike any other event of its kind thanks to the unique way tickets are issued and sold. In short: the general public cannot purchase tickets directly from the NFL.

Your best bet for getting face value Super Bowl tickets is to be a season ticket holder for any NFL team. About 75% of tickets are distributed directly to the teams, with the majority going to the two playing in the big game. Each team then sells their allotment—usually via lottery—to lucky season ticket holders, players’ families, employees, and others. The remaining 25% of tickets are controlled by the NFL and go to sponsors, media, and networks.

If you’re like most of us and missed the boat on season tickets, there’s still hope. While it’ll be tough to snag face value tickets, you can still find great seats through a secondary marketplace like Gametime. And that’s where we come in…

In this Super Bowl Buying Guide we’ll cover:

  • How and when to buy Super Bowl tickets
  • Finding the cheapest Super Bowl tickets
  • Super Bowl ticket security features
  • Why buy from Gametime
  • The Super Bowl experience (accommodations, dining, transportation, etc)



The Epic Search for Super Bowl Tickets

How to Buy Super Bowl Tickets

If you’re here, we’re assuming you’re not a lucky NFL lottery winner, which means you’ll likely be getting your tickets on the secondary market. Buying tickets from a secure reseller is 100% safe and secure, as long as you’re purchasing from a reputable source. Here are a few tips for how to structure your search:

  • Do your research.
    Super Bowl tickets are a huge purchase for most people, so you’ll definitely want to check out multiple sites and compare prices. In the end, make sure you’re purchasing from a trusted company who will provide support and open communication throughout the process, all the way through game day.

  • Set your budget.
    Decide on a threshold that works for you, and be ready to buy as soon as tickets drop to that price. Don’t give up too early if you’re not seeing tickets in your range—prices generally fall in the last few days before the game. (See: “When to Buy Super Bowl Tickets” below.)

  • Prepare in advance.
    Super Bowl tickets go fast, especially in the lower price range. To prepare for your purchase, create an account and add your payment info on your preferred marketplace in advance. It’ll speed up the transaction when you’re ready to buy, ensuring you get those perfect seats. 

When to Buy Super Bowl Tickets

Though trends vary from year to year, there are a few dependable peaks and valleys you can expect when it comes to Super Bowl ticket prices. Like most live events, the Super Bowl market tends to see prices drop as game day gets closer. Keep in mind that’s not always the case, though. There are myriad factors that can impact ticket prices, including weather, location, player injuries, and the matchup itself.

Face value Super Bowl tickets generally start at nearly $1,000 for nosebleeds—so you better be prepared to dole out some cash for these coveted seats. That said, if you know how the system works and plan accordingly, you just might come by an awesome deal on tickets.

Super Bowl Price Chart

Historically, ticket prices increase right after the NFC and AFC championship games, as enthusiastic fans jump at the chance to see their favorite team compete in the Super Bowl. After the rush, prices tend to drop gradually over the following two weeks, usually hitting their lowest point in the couple of days prior to the game. Your best bet for cheap Super Bowl tickets—and we’re using the word “cheap” loosely here—is to wait until a day or two before the game.

Of course, if you’re determined to go to the Super Bowl and you see a ticket within your price range, you may be wise to jump on it right away, since the market can be unpredictable.

If you’re tracking ticket prices in the Gametime mobile app, we recommend enabling All-In Pricing to view total costs including taxes and fees. Simply tap “My Tickets” in the app, click on your profile info at the top, and toggle All-In Pricing under Settings. By turning on this feature, you’ll see the full cost of tickets as you scroll through the app. (Note: you’ll need to create a Gametime account in order to adjust these settings.)

Authentic Super Bowl Tickets

How to Identify Legitimate Super Bowl Tickets

Although rare, Super Bowl ticket scams are both heartbreaking and wallet-draining. While it’s unlikely you’ll end up a victim of counterfeit tickets, it’s always a good idea to be prepared and stay knowledgeable.

The best way to avoid scams and know you’re purchasing legit Super Bowl tickets is to buy through a trusted platform like Gametime, and always use a secure payment method with protections, like a credit or debit card. Every ticket we sell is backed by our Gametime Guarantee, so you can rest assured your tickets are authentic.

As you consider your options, we recommend you get familiar with how to identify authentic Super Bowl tickets. Check out this year's Super Bowl ticket security features, so you know your tickets are the real deal:

  • Raised Lettering
    Legitimate Super Bowl tickets are printed on high-quality stock with raised textures throughout the design, including the Vince Lombardi Trophy, the NFL logo and the Super Bowl LIII logo.

  • Official Hologram
    Your authentic Super Bowl tickets will feature a hologram showing a football with LIII as well as the words “Super Bowl LIII Atlanta” and "02.03.19"

  • RFID Chip
    All Super Bowl tickets are printed with an RFID chip on the back, ensuring the authenticity and security of your ticket. 

Super Bowl Ticket Security Features

Why Buy from Gametime?

If thinking about buying Super Bowl tickets is making your palms sweat a little, we get it. Spending two months’ rent on one epic day can make anyone a little panicky. At Gametime, your peace of mind is our #1 priority, and we’re here to help you turn that nervous energy into pure exhilaration. If you're looking for a little extra reassurance, here are a few reasons to feel confident buying your tickets from Gametime:

 

Gametime Shield

Guaranteed Authentic Super Bowl Tickets
We partner only with verified Super Bowl ticket resellers, so you can breathe easy knowing your tickets are authentic. If you’ve never purchased from us—or even heard of us!—check out this article about Gametime from Inc.com to learn more.

Money

Lower Fees → Better Prices
Gametime has some of the lowest ticketing fees in the business, meaning we offer more competitive pricing for Super Bowl tickets, and your total cost won’t be inflated due to unnecessary service fees.

Ticket

Curated Listings
We do the grunt work for you. Our intuitive platform surfaces the best ticket options available at any given time based on price, location, and other factors—so you don’t have to waste your time scrolling through less-than-stellar deals.  

Phone

Dedicated Super Bowl Customer Support
This game is a big deal, so we’ve dedicated part of our customer support team to be on-call specifically for Super Bowl buyers, now through game day. Reach out at (888) 660-7992 between 6am - 9pm PST. Don’t be surprised if we answer on the first ring.

Mercedes-Benz Stadium

The Super Bowl Experience

Super Bowl Location Info

The City: Atlanta, Georgia

The 2019 Super Bowl will take place in Atlanta, Georgia—home of the Falcons, Childish Gambino, and Coca-Cola. This sprawling metropolitan city boasts mild winters, an easy-to-navigate public transit system, and countless greasy spoons. The makings for a perfect Super Bowl host city.

In Atlanta, modern pop culture merges with the region’s deep historical roots, creating a vibrant, energetic melting pot that welcomes visitors from all over the world. Whether you’re a foodie, sports fanatic, history buff, or musician, you’ll find your niche in Atlanta’s diverse urban landscape.

Fortunately, the city is no stranger to marquee sporting events. Atlanta has hosted the Super Bowl twice before—Super Bowl XXVIII in 1994 and Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000—as well as the 1996 Summer Olympics and the College Football Playoff National Championship in 2018.

 

The Matchup: Los Angeles Rams vs. New England Patriots

On February 3rd, the New England Patriots will take on the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII. It'll be the ninth for the Patriots since 2001, while the Rams have made three Super Bowl appearances as a team — two during their tenure in St. Louis and one as the LA Rams back in 1980. In fact, the two have even faced off in the championship previously. In 2002, the Patriots defeated the then-St. Louis Rams 20 - 17 in Super Bowl XXXVI. Now the Los Angeles Rams are back and ready for a rematch. 

Patriots Super Bowl tickets have historically been high in demand, given the team's passionate following throughout the Northeast. The Rams, on the other hand, are still setting down roots in their new California digs, and are likely to have a smaller-than-usual turnout of traveling fans. Beyond their respective fan bases, the matchup is a classic clash of old school vs. new school. Last time the teams met in the Super Bowl, the Pats dynasty was just ramping up. Today, the Brady-Belichick duo has more Super Bowl appearances together than every player on the Rams combined. The Pats certainly have a leg up when it comes to experience, but the Rams have younger, fresher energy on their side. Which will prevail? We'll all find out together... 

 

The Venue: Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Super Bowl LIII will be held at Mercedes-Benz stadium in downtown Atlanta. This brand new stadium opened in 2017, replacing the Georgia Dome. It’s the first professional sports stadium in the country to achieve platinum LEED status and the most sustainable sports venue in the world. Seating up to 83,000 people, the stadium acts as home turf for the Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United FC.

The state-of-the-art facility features a Transformer-like retractable roof and innovative technology throughout. But what fans really come for is the food. (Well, the game, too. But mostly the food.) The venue’s dining and beverage options are ranked #1 in the NFL by fans, going far beyond your standard stadium fare. Gone are the days when you had to choose between a naked hot dog and a rock-hard giant pretzel. Fans at Mercedes-Benz stadium can gorge on gourmet short rib burgers, smoked pulled pork tacos, and even vegan tapas, if that’s your thing.

Among the many specialty dining options available, fan favorites include:

  • Delia’s Chicken Sausage Stand
  • Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q
  • Molly B’s Kitchen
  • Snackology 101 Market
  • Golden Brown & Delicious

 

Super Bowl Tailgating

Pregame at the Super Bowl is always buzzing with energy and excitement, as thousands of people descend upon the stadium grounds—many of whom aren’t even going to the game but just want to get rowdy alongside their fellow fans.

Tailgating at Mercedes-Benz Stadium is allowed before the game in all flat parking lots. Keep in mind that your car can take up only one parking space, and your tailgating equipment—including tents, grills, and your intricately carved ice luge—may not extend beyond the area behind your vehicle. To see which parking lots allow tailgating, visit the Mercedes-Benz Stadium website.

Want to elevate your pregame experience? Grab tickets to the Players Tailgate, where you can rub elbows with NFL players, dine on food prepared by celebrity chefs, and generally bask in Super Bowl extravagance. A Players Tailgate ticket can be yours for just $750.

For more info about Mercedes-Benz Stadium—including policies, dining options, and facilities—check out the stadium’s official website.

 

Super Bowl Accommodations

According to STR, a firm specializing in hotel industry data, average daily rates in Atlanta are expected to triple over Super Bowl weekend. Of course, the highest hotel rates will be concentrated downtown, so visitors may want to consider renting a car and booking outside the city’s epicenter. Most hotels near the stadium will sell out—if they haven’t already—but there are ample transportation options to navigate the city, no matter where you’re staying.

Didn’t plan ahead? Check out the HotelTonight app for the best chance at snagging a last-minute hotel deal. Visitors can also rent an apartment or home on websites like Airbnb and HomeAway.

Hotels Near Mercedes-Benz Stadium:

  • Omni Atlanta Hotel
    Located at the CNN Center downtown, the Omni Atlanta Hotel is the closest hotel to Mercedes-Benz Stadium. As a luxury Four Diamond property, the Omni offers a high-end spa experience, several on-site restaurants, and an outdoor heated pool. You’re going to the Super Bowl—why not do it right?!

  • Embassy Suites by Hilton Atlanta Centennial Olympic Park
    Just a short walk from the Super Bowl grounds, the Embassy Suites sits right on the beautiful Centennial Olympic Park and adjacent to the Georgia Aquarium. With free made-to-order breakfast and a complimentary evening reception for all guests, Embassy Suites Atlanta offers great value for families and those needing a little more space.

  • Glenn Hotel, Autograph Collection
    Just a stone’s throw from the big game, the Glenn is a charming boutique hotel offering unique dining options, cozy gathering places, and panoramic city views from its SkyLounge cocktail bar. For those with discerning taste and a penchant for character, it’ll be a nice departure from Atlanta’s big box hotel options.  

  • Hilton Garden Inn Atlanta Downtown
    Featuring two swimming pools and a fully-equipped fitness center, this hotel has a little something for everyone. The Hilton Garden Inn Atlanta Downtown is located within walking distance of some of Atlanta’s top destinations—including the World of Coca Cola, the Georgia World Congress Center, and yes, Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

  • Hyatt House Atlanta Downtown
    Want the comforts of a hotel but the convenience of home? The Hyatt House Atlanta Downtown offers refrigerators and microwaves in every room, as well as a complimentary breakfast buffet. Located just a mile away from the stadium, it’s a great choice if you’re optimizing for convenience.

  • Hotel Clermont
    Located on historic Ponce de Leon Avenue, Hotel Clermont is an Instagrammer’s dream. With kitschy wallpaper, mid-century modern upscale bunk rooms, and a trendy picture-perfect cocktail lounge, any millennial will feel right at home here. Looking for a unique ATL hotel stay? Do it for the ‘gram.

Atlanta Super Bowl

Getting Around Atlanta

Located in the heart of downtown Atlanta, Mercedes-Benz Stadium is easily accessible whether you plan to walk, drive, or ride. For directions, parking passes, and public transit routes, visit the Mercedes-Benz Stadium website. Here are your best options for navigating the city:

  • Public Transportation
    Atlanta’s citywide bus and rail system, known as MARTA, is the easiest way to get to the game if you’re coming from within the metro area. With several stops at the doorstep of the stadium, you’ll be delivered right to the center of the action.

  • Ride Sharing
    Attendees can also catch a ride with Uber or Lyft, both of which are widely available in Atlanta. Mercedes-Benz Stadium provides two designated Lyft dropoff and pickup locations to make it a smooth ride. The primary (recommended) Lyft zone is near Gate 1, while a smaller secondary zone services Gates 2, 3, and 4 on Centennial Olympic Park Drive.

  • Driving
    Parking will undoubtedly be tricky, despite the fact that there are more than 20,000 parking spots within walking distance of the stadium. We recommend purchasing a parking pass in advance to save yourself from a pregame headache.

 

Eating & Drinking in Atlanta

Must-Visit Atlanta Institutions

  • The Varsity
    “What’ll ya have, what’ll ya have?” Expect this friendly greeting as you step up to the counter at The Varsity. An Atlanta landmark for 90 years, this fast food mecca is home to some of the best chili dogs, onion rings, and fried peach pies in the south. With six locations throughout Atlanta, there’s no excuse not to experience this local institution.

  • Mary Mac’s Tea Room
    This Midtown staple has been a favorite among visitors and locals alike for more than 70 years. The ambiance isn’t anything to write home about, but that’s not what you came for. If you haven’t had your fill of fried chicken and peach cobbler yet, Mary Mac’s Tea Room should be near the top of your list.

  • Majestic Diner
    If you need a little extra nourishment to soak up all those game day beers, Majestic Diner is your late-night destination, serving up “food that pleases” since 1929. Featuring blue-plate specials, handspun milkshakes, southern grits, and a hearty side of nostalgia, this iconic diner is open 24/7 for all your feasting needs.

  • Manuel’s Tavern
    This famed Atlanta bar & restaurant is frequented by everyone from famous politicians to blue-collar workers, acting as a long-time neighborhood gathering place for all kinds. With dozens of beers on tap, hearty pub food, and a lively atmosphere, this is a must-visit stop on your Super Bowl dining tour of Atlanta.

  • Taco Mac
    Known for their award-winning buffalo wings and boasting nearly 100 beers on tap, Taco Mac’s original location still sits in Atlanta’s Virginia-Highlands neighborhood. From burgers to flatbreads to tacos, there’s something to please everyone on their menu.

 

Atlanta Bars & Pubs

  • Polaris
    For panoramic city views, mid-century ATL vibes, and handcrafted classic cocktails, visit this rotating rooftop lounge atop the Hyatt Regency. Bourbon fans will enjoy the bar’s custom blend in partnership with Maker’s Mark.

  • STATS
    Located just a hop-skip from Mercedes-Benz Stadium, this popular rooftop sports bar will undoubtedly be packed all throughout Super Bowl weekend. Pour your own beers at your personal table tap and order via iPad—if you can get a table!

  • Brick Store Pub
    If you find yourself strolling Atlanta’s Decatur Square, stop by the Brick Store Pub for a pint of your favorite craft brew. Their list features nearly 30 beers on tap and more than 75 bottled beers, all carefully chosen by the owners. Be prepared, though: the environment offers a departure from your standard Super Bowl experience—no TVs, no major domestic beers, and no neon in sight.

  • Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall
    Situated along the BeltLine’s Eastside Trail and a stone’s throw from popular Krog Street Market, Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall is a campfire and lodge-themed bar and restaurant. With ample indoor and outdoor space and charming decor, it’s the perfect spot for a cocktail on a balmy February evening.

  • Northside Tavern
    For those who prefer their pub floors sticky and their drinks stiff, this hole-in-the-wall blues bar is for you. Read: it’s divey. It’s also a long-time favorite among Atlanta locals and still holds its own in contrast to its sleeker, newer neighbors. Dance all night to local crooners seven nights a week.

  • Holeman & Finch Public House
    The quintessential modern cocktail bar, Holeman & Finch could be considered the birthplace of Atlanta’s craft cocktail scene. The drinks are simple but thoughtfully crafted—and they pair surprisingly well with the joint’s famous burgers. Enjoy happy hour and $1 oysters every weekday from 5 – 7pm.

  • 9 Mile Station
    Located on the rooftop of the trendy Ponce City Market, 9 Mile Station dubs itself an “elevated beer garden,” complete with sweeping skyline views and a full menu of gastropub favorites. The indoor-outdoor space hosts an ice skating rink through the winter, so snowbird visitors can feel at home while in town for Super Bowl weekend.

 

Dedicated Super Bowl Support

Ready to pull the trigger on Patriots vs. Rams Super Bowl tickets? Still have unanswered questions? We’re here to help! Give us a call if you have questions about buying tickets or would like to follow up on an existing Super Bowl order. You can reach us at (888) 660-7992 between 6am - 9pm PST.