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Gametime
Published: Sep. 19, 2021

When's the Best Time to Buy Super Bowl Tickets?


With so many ways to buy tickets to sporting events these days, fans are often confused about the best time to buy tickets. The problem is often magnified when it comes to Super Bowl tickets, which is obviously the ultimate sporting event for fans. In fairness, there’s no such thing as a cheap Super Bowl ticket. For most people, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. But there are ways that fans can get the best deal possible when buying Super Bowl tickets. Like most things in life and in sports, it all comes down to timing. So let’s take a closer look at the best time for fans to buy their Super Bowl tickets.

Monitor the Secondary Market

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When deciding the best time to buy Super Bowl tickets, it’s important to understand how tickets are sold. There’s no box office to visit to buy Super Bowl tickets. Instead, the tickets are distributed among the 32 teams, with the two participating teams and the host receiving the biggest allotment. The teams can choose how to divide their tickets, with players, coaches, team employees, and season-ticket holders usually getting the option to buy first. If there are any tickets left after that, they might be made available to the general public.

In other words, unless you’re a season-ticket holder with a team or you have some connection through a friend, family member, or employee to the NFL or a team, you’re going to have to look on the secondary market for Super Bowl tickets. This entails monitoring ticket prices on several sites regularly while looking for tickets to fall into your price range. Needless to say, this can be a tedious task, which is why it’s best to know when to look for tickets and when to not look for tickets.

The Early Bird

Unless you’re massively wealthy, going to the Super Bowl will likely be a once-in-a-lifetime event. Most people aren’t in a position to spend several thousands of dollars on a single ticket to a sporting event. For those people, it makes sense under the right circumstances to buy a Super Bowl ticket early. The NFL sets the date and location of Super Bowls several years in advance so that fans can plan ahead if they wish.

However, it only makes sense under the right circumstances. If you live near the sight of the Super Bowl or can stay with friends or family who live in that city, it might make sense to buy Super Bowl tickets -  because you’ll be able to cut down on some of the other expenses that go hand in hand with attending the game. Hotels don’t come cheap during the weekend of the Super Bowl, so it’s best to reduce those costs whenever possible to help offset the cost of the tickets. Otherwise, it usually doesn’t make sense to buy tickets to a Super Bowl far in advance.

Avoid Championship Game Euphoria

Most fans choose to go to the Super Bowl after their favorite team makes it. After all, you never know when your team is going to get another chance to play in the Super Bowl, so you have to strike when the opportunity arises. However, this is where many fans get into trouble and end up paying far more than they need to. 

When somebody’s favorite team reaches the Super Bowl, fans will instinctually flock to ticket-buying sites to get their tickets. However, this is the wrong move on two fronts. First, the secondary market is never going to run out of available Super Bowl tickets, so there’s no need to rush and buy tickets the way you would food and water before a hurricane hits. Second, the spike in demand on Championship Sunday when we learn the two teams playing in the Super Bowl causes the prices to rise. It’s a simple case of supply and demand. Unless the market is suddenly flooded with more tickets, the instant demand after Championship Games will lead to tickets being at their most expensive price.

The Sweet Spot

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The key to buying Super Bowl tickets is to wait until the week of the game. The euphoria of the two conference championship games leads to a spike that starts to fade after a week or so. Historically, the best time to buy Super Bowl tickets is three to five days before the game. Ticket holders with no intention of going to the game start to worry about selling their tickets, causing prices to gradually drop the closer we get to the game. Also, buying tickets three to five days before the game leaves enough time to make travel and lodging arrangements.

Fans with flexibility could even wait until the last day or two before the game, perhaps even buying tickets on game day if they are already in the host city. To be fair, waiting until the last 24 hours can be a risky game to play because the ticket selection and value aren’t always guaranteed to be there. However, the three to five days leading up to the Super Bowl is when you want to start monitoring the market closely in order to find the best possible deal on Super Bowl tickets.


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