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Tuesday, November 5, 2013
89 Days: $3,250? That's the ticket!

By Jane McManus

Super Bowl XLVII tickets
The street value of Super Bowl tickets may ultimately depend on the weather.
Each day from now until Feb. 2, ESPNNewYork.com will take you inside the challenge of staging the most unpredictable NFL title game ever. There are 89 days to the Super Bowl.

If you have to ask how much a Super Bowl ticket is, you probably can’t afford it.

The NFL has raised prices for the championship game at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey and tickets will start -- start -- at $800. Earlier this year, NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy told reporters the price increase was in response to all the money that’s gone to resellers in recent years.

"We are looking to close the gap between the face value of the ticket and its true value as reflected on the secondary market," McCarthy said.

There are already 960 tickets for sale on StubHub, one of the biggest secondary marketplaces for sporting events. Those tickets are starting at $3,250.

“Last year's average price for the Super Bowl was $2,500, the NFL changing their pricing structure/raising prices won't make a difference for this game,” wrote StubHub spokesperson Shannon Barbara via email.

The NFL has set general admission ticket prices at $800, $1,000, $1,200, and $1,500 this year for a Super Bowl that will be held outdoors on Feb. 2. That luxurious price-tag may yield a seat that is anything but, depending on the weather. MetLife Stadium also has club-level seating that offers indoor space from which to watch the game.

“The upcoming Super Bowl will definitely be unique, a different beast than others before,” Barbara said. “Obviously the outdoor aspect is a factor, and the massive size of the market.”

There is some speculation that the marketplace could fluctuate in the week leading up to the game, if buyers rethink sitting through a Nor’easter in February and try to recoup value online. In that scenario, ticket prices could drop and hit a level that middle-class NFL fans might be able to afford.

“The weather will make a difference as the game gets closer, snow/freezing temps could cause prices to fall,” Barbara wrote, “but in short -- we're likely to see one of the biggest Super Bowls in history, solely based on location.”

Don’t have the money for a Super Bowl ticket at face value? Well, there is a fan lottery to get a ticket that will cost a comparatively discounted $500. The number of lottery tickets was doubled to 1,000 this year, the NFL said, but the deadline for entries was June 1. Oops.

It's not like you can buy tickets at the box office, anyway. The league, along with the New York Jets, New York Giants and the two teams who ultimately reach the Super Bowl, will be able to offer a limited number of seats, which are likely to be funneled to sponsors and season-ticketholders.

MetLife holds 83,000 fans for regular-season NFL games, a number that could decrease given the space required for security, media and entertainment. Even so, Barbara said that the New York area has traditionally been the No. 3 market for Super Bowl tickets, even during years when the Giants weren’t playing.

“This year, fans will be able to drive from multiple states, not have to pay for hotels, flights, etc.,” Barbara wrote.

Sounds like a bargain.

Come back daily for more on the issues, logistics and personalities surrounding Super Bowl XLVIII.