February 8, 2014

New Viking stadium “seat licenses” a good reason to watch the game on TV

Filed under: Economics, Football — Tags: , — Nicholas @ 11:49

Perhaps I misunderstand the economic argument here, but I’d always had a pretty basic notion about buying season tickets or individual game tickets for most professional sports. You either bought a season ticket package for x number of games (up to the full season of home games) or you bought a single ticket for a particular game. Over the years, I’ve bought tickets to individual Viking games in Buffalo and Detroit where the purchase was simple and straightforward … I paid the fee and received a ticket. Nice and simple. Apparently that sort of stone-age arrangement is long in the past: at least in Minnesota, you need to buy a “seat license” in order to then buy season tickets. The Daily Norseman‘s Ted Glover explains:

In an effort to raise $100 million of their portion of money for the new stadium, the Vikings released their ‘stadium builder’s plan’ for folks that want season tickets.

What’s a stadium builder’s plan? Well, it’s a one time fee that allows to you get season tickets … and you’ll also have to pay for those. Basically, the better the seat, the more cabbage you’re going to have to cough up. For example, if you want a season ticket in the ‘Valhalla Club’, your one time seat license fee will be $9,500, plus the cost of season tickets.

Damn, son.

The Vikings will have SBL’s for approximately 75% of the seats in the stadium, and the farther away you get from the field, the cheaper they are. The cheapest SBL is $500, and you have two payment options, 3 years with no interest, or 8 years with an as yet TBD interest charge.

On the one hand, I approve of the idea that the fans should pay more of the cost of building a new stadium rather than non-football fans among the state’s taxpayers. On the other hand, the prices seem incredibly steep for a mere “license”. You can get a virtual look at what you’ll be licensing a tiny bit of:

However, in an effort to relieve the sticker shock of said licenses, they released a virtual tour of what the new stadium will look like. And it’s pretty damn cool.

So, grab your checkbook. And your ankles.


  1. In college football, here in the Classic City, you have to buy a “seat license” every year, in the form of a contribution to the Athletic Association, in order to then be eligible to buy your season tickets. If you don’t contribute enough, you don’t get tickets.

    Comment by Jeff — February 8, 2014 @ 19:42

  2. So it’s more widespread than just the money-grubbers at Winter Park, MN? What is the benefit of making two separate items out of this? If the team/university thinks they’re leaving money on the table, why not just set the ticket prices to the level they think will optimize their revenue and leave it at that, rather than faffing about with the dual mechanism?

    Comment by Nicholas — February 9, 2014 @ 09:45

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