Saying Atlanta is doing something right probably pains most Bucs fans, but hey, sometimes the truth hurts. The Falcons are doing something that hopefully becomes contagious. Not just in the NFL but over all sports. With the Falcons set to open a new stadium in time for the start of the 2017 season, the team has announced the prices of the concession stand items, and it’s a breath of fresh air.
A rising problem around all major sports is that the average man struggles to take a family to watch a sporting event live. Going to Raymond James Stadium to take your family out to watch a live Bucs game could be an exciting time for both you and your kids, but for most, cost becomes a huge factor. Scenario time. Let’s take a family of four; two kids and two adults. So we need four tickets. Tickets to the upper deck this year at Raymond James will be in the $51 – $70 range for the top level. Meet in the middle and assume $60 a ticket for four people and throw in the $25 it cost to park (another insane fee in my opinion) and just to get in the door you are already $265 in the hole.
The sting of $265 to walk in the door wears off though as you see the excitement on your kids faces as they see the field for the first time. You find your seats and the kids want a drink. You and your significant other decide to have a beer and bottled water. The refillable soft drinks for your kids cost $7 a piece, beer is $7.50 a piece, and the two bottles of water $4.50 a piece. That’s $38 for the beverages.
Let’s not forgot food. At Raymond James Stadium you aren’t allowed to bring anything into the stadium (Tropicana Field allows you to bring in food items) Assuming three of you have a hot dog ( $ 5.50),one chicken tender basket ($11) and throw in snacks of two pretzels ($4.50) and an order of fries ($5.00), you’re now looking at $41.50 for food. That’s a total of $79.50 inside, and that’s not including merchandise that the kids are sure to bug you for. That is just under $350 total for a day out with your family at the game, which could be more based on your seating preferences and food choices. The concession prices are vastly overpriced at all sporting events, and the Falcons have decided to do something about it.
At the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the cost of items come much closer to the outside the stadium pricing. Refillable sodas, hot dogs, popcorn, pretzels, and bottles of water will all cost $2. Peanuts, fries, nachos, and a slice of pizza will cost $3. Souvenir cups will cost $4 and cheeseburgers and beers will cost $5. A basket of chicken tenders with fries will be $6. Most of these prices are close to, if not more than 50% off the cost of most of these items at other sporting venues. With the scenario laid out before, it would be a savings of $42.50. Also the refillable sodas will be accessed by machines that consumers can refill themselves, cutting down on long wait times to get your refill. If you have been to a Bucs games, you know getting refreshments at halftime can possibly lead to missing the beginning of the second half, so cutting down wait times also helps improve the fan experience.
So my message to the Bucs, let the great city of Tampa join the Falcons in becoming pioneers in lowering concession prices across the board. Arthur Blank, the president of the Falcons has the right idea. “The prices are a way to make the games more financially accessible for families”. “It’s our way of thanking the fans for their support,” said Blank. The best way to say thank you is putting money in people’s wallets, so let’s go Tampa. We wouldn’t want the Falcons to show us up now would we?
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