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A recent survey showed that Americans spend over $56 billion every year attending live sporting events. It costs an average family about $500 to attend a professional football match. These figures include tickets, travel, meals, and accommodation costs.
Every sports fan will agree that nothing beats the thrill and excitement of experiencing a live game. It doesn’t matter which game, baseball, racing, football or basketball, watching and cheering for your team amongst equally enthusiastic fans in a stadium is golden.
The problem is it can cost too much. To attend most games, you have to think about traveling for miles, getting the tickets on time, tagging some friends along – the costs all add up.
Well, these seven tips show that it’s possible to still enjoy attending a live game on a budget. Here is how you cut down on spending at sporting events.
1. Shop Around for Tickets
The ticket price is where you should look first to save some money. Find out how to get the cheapest tickets for the game.
In most cases, you’ll have to purchase advanced or group tickets to get the best prices. It is ordinarily economical to buy the season’s tickets if you are planning to attend every game.
Usually, getting the tickets online is much cheaper than at the box office. The secondary market is also an excellent place to find low-price tickets. Browse this site for resellers who want to get rid of unwanted tickets.
2. Avoid the Big Sporting Events
All sporting events have tiered pricing. This means that the games which are on high demand cost a lot more than less popular ones.
Popular games feature main rivals whom everyone wants to see go head-to-head. If the tickets aren’t already sold out, they will cost a fortune. If you are looking to enjoy an event on a budget, these are not the games for you.
Sit them out, watch on TV, and attend lesser games instead.
It’s not like less popular games are any less exciting than big games. You could still have a great deal of fun even at minor leagues and college leagues, and they barely cost a thing to attend.
3. Look for Discounts
Discounts are another great way to cut cost. Find out whatever it is you can use to score some rebates.
For instance, you could save tons of money on tickets by using sports-sponsored credit cards. The NFL, NHL, and Nascar all have sponsored credit cards offering generous discounts when used to purchase tickets.
Many consumer services like broadband services, cable and travel agencies also give out discounts on seasonal events tickets. Utilize your eligibility for such rewards.
Some organizations may offer discounted tickets to their employees. For instance, if your employer is affiliated with a team or sporting event, you might get discounted tickets or even access to exclusive events.
4. Eat Outside the Stadium
Snacks and drinks inside a sports stadium are seriously overpriced. Whether it’s at the restaurants, bars, or the food vendors, you’ll end up paying ridiculous prices for some grab.
To avoid the temptation of spending $10 on a hotdog, but your meals outside the stadium before the game.
It could also be great if you could bring something to snack on as you watch the game. Check whether the facility allows food and drinks from outside. Even if they don’t allow it, the rules are not strict on bottled water and candy, so you could still get away with some candy bars and drinks.
If the outside food regulations are not strict, you could even bring a cooler to enjoy some refreshing drinks with your friends.
5. Avoid the Merchandise Store
The team’s merchandise store is a cash sinking attraction for die-hard fans. You will find original branded items like jerseys, caps, key rings, and the like. Just like the food, prices are steep.
If you can’t avoid the temptation of purchasing some merchandise, then don’t even go in the direction of the store.
If you need to get some merchandise to show your team loyalty, there are cheaper ways to get some. Many teams have online stores where they sell discounted items. Even your local sporting goods retailer will have lower prices.
6. Use Public Transport
If you have to travel to the game, use public transport whenever possible. The biggest problem is not the gas money, but the parking fees.
If you are lucky to find a parking spot anywhere near a fully packed stadium, the fee will be ridiculously high. We are talking $20, $30 or $40 to park your car for just a few hours. In some cases, using the stadium’s parking facility has been found to cost more than the game’s ticket.
This is unacceptable. But there’s nothing the organizers can do when thousands of fans show up, each with their vehicle.
You don’t have to worry about parking if you travel by bus, taxi or even Uber.
7. Get Cheaper Seats
If you are set on cutting down on the cost of tickets, then don’t be afraid of the high seats.
The far-off seats are known as the nosebleed sections. The theory is that you sit so high up you could get a nosebleed. But of course, that doesn’t happen.
The fact is, these seats are mostly available and cost a lot less than prime seats – sometimes even less than half the price. Besides, it may not matter where you sit, as long as you are part of the crowd and are enjoying the game’s atmosphere.
There are several simple ways to save money on sporting events. They include careful planning and making smart decisions. You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to enjoy the thrills and the action of your favorite games.
Watching from your living room by yourself is no fun. Go out and get the full experience first hand among like-minded sports lovers. And the beauty of it is you don’t have to break the bank doing it.