Why Chiefs-49ers Super Bowl ticket prices are the most expensive on record

Fans thinking of going to Las Vegas for the Super Bowl should prepare for a case of sticker shock if they haven’t already purchased tickets.

Prices for the Feb. 11 game are the most expensive on record. Just getting inside Allegiant Stadium to see the Kansas City Chiefs take on the San Francisco 49ers will cost around $8,000 for a single ticket, which is 35 percent more expensive than the $5,997 “get-in” price of the Super Bowl this time last year, according to data from TickPick, an online ticket marketplace.

The average purchase price of Super Bowl tickets listed on TickPick is $9,804 – 69 percent more expensive than last season’s championship, which saw an average price of $5,795. Data from StubHub indicates the average price of tickets sold on its marketplace is $9,300, though StubHub buyers will incur a fulfillment and service fee that was in the low thousands as of Wednesday.

StubHub’s data shows buyers from California account for 26 percent of all tickets sold. Nevada is next at 8 percent, followed by Kansas/Missouri at 7 percent.

The fact that Sin City is playing host to the largest football game in the country for the first time is a big factor driving demand, but scarcity is also playing a part, TickPick vice president of growth Matt Ferrel said. Allegiant Stadium has 65,000 seats, which ranks 27th among the 32 NFL stadiums by capacity.

“It’s the first Super Bowl in what’s newly kind of being established as the domestic sports capital with F1, the Raiders now being there and teams moving to Las Vegas. And Las Vegas ultimately being a fairly compelling destination for any large-scale event. When you’re talking about the Super Bowl, it’s one of the largest-scale events,” Ferrel said.

StubHub spokesperson Adam Budelli also pointed to the location as a big draw for spectators, citing statistics gathered from regular-season sales. The Raiders had the highest average ticket price across the league in the regular season, Budelli said.

“Ninety percent of (StubHub) buyers for Raider games were coming from out of market,” he said.

Neither TickPick nor StubHub has full transparency into who is buying the tickets and for what purpose — whether the people shelling out big bucks are dedicated fans buying for themselves or if they’re businesses purchasing tickets for employees or clientele — but Ferrel said fans of both teams “drive a significant volume of sales.”

“There’s entertainment and hosting of business or clients or larger groups that certainly fulfills some of this. There are corporate purchases as well. It’s speculation, but when you have prices rising to where they are now, you would imagine the percentage breakdown of core fans of the team becomes a little bit smaller, and the ability to transact on this from a more retail purchaser standpoint becomes a little more difficult,” he said. “But we do see true fans, people who are looking to see their team ultimately win the championship. It is surprising to hear, but it does still happen at these levels.”

The Chiefs and Niners have a history of garnering high ticket prices, as the previous most expensive Super Bowl on record was in 2020 when the two teams faced off in Miami. The average purchase price of that was $6,370, per TickPick.

“While the initial price of that Super Bowl was less expensive, we found that the price remained pretty resilient,” Ferrel said. “In other Super Bowls past, we’ve seen that the closer to the event, transaction prices and average purchase prices go down. But the one caveat I do want to bring to this particular one is — in the more recent past in this exact matchup — price resiliency stayed strong and, in fact, rose closer to the event.”

Could a certain mega-famous pop star who has frequented Chiefs games this season be another reason prices for this Super Bowl are so high?

Both Ferrel and Budelli said their respective websites didn’t have any data to pinpoint that the possibility of a Taylor Swift appearance may be affecting the secondary ticket market, but StubHub does have numbers to prove her presence impacted previous sales.

“In the 24 hours after Taylor’s first appearance at a Chiefs game, on StubHub we experienced three times the amount of sales for their next home game. That’s the most single-day increase since the schedule release,” Budelli said.