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When Super Bowl LVI kicks off Sunday, over 100 million viewers are expected to tune in to watch the game on NBC featuring the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals.

One data analytics firm, PredictHQ, has projected that viewership will reach an all-time record 117 million viewers, which would break the previous record of 114 million in 2015 when Tom Brady and the New England Patriots faced the Seattle Seahawks.

Some will even come to watch the actual football game, as opposed to zoning out until the now-traditional ad blitz. A 30-second advertisement costs $6.5 million in the 2022 game, up from 2021’s $5.6 million for slots. In the first Super Bowl played on Jan. 15, 1967, companies could run an ad spot for $37,500, roughly $320,457 in 2022 dollars.

And for your halftime entertainment, an all-star hip-hop lineup featuring Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar will hit the stage for an 11- to 12-minute performance.

In the first Super Bowl though, the University of Arizona Symphonic Marching Band took the field as headliners for the halftime show. Twenty years later, in 1987, the University of Southern California joined forces with Grambling State University for the halftime of Super Bowl XXI. Things went downhill two years later when Super Bowl XXIII brought on Elvis Presto, an Elvis Presley impersonator, as the halftime entertainment.

It wasn’t until the mid-1990s that the Super Bowl started to become the enterprise that we know today, with halftime shows and advertising that frequently overshadows the game itself. And nowhere can we see that more clearly than in the history of Super Bowl ticket prices.

When tickets first went on sale for Super Bowl LVI , the National Football League offered 14 prices for tickets ranging from $950 for the upper level to $6,200 for the best seats, according to Spectrum News 1. At last check, the NFL’s official verified ticket site Ticketmaster was asking $3,100 for its cheapest ticket in the upper level in Section 532 of SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif.

The average ticket price for Sunday’s game, according to StubHub, is $8,869, which would be the highest average for secondary market tickets in the Super Bowl’s 56-year history, The Spun reported

As you’ll read below, while a ticket today costs more than a new computer or kitchen appliance, it wasn’t that long ago that you could see the Super Bowl for less than the price of dinner and a movie. (The prices are based on data from the Star TribuneBleacher Report, NBC and The Spun.) 

A Historical Look at Super Bowl Ticket Prices

1967

Average Ticket Price – $12

Inflation Adjusted – $106

1968

Average Ticket Price – $12

Inflation Adjusted – $99

1969

Average Ticket Price – $12

Inflation Adjusted – $95

1970

Average Ticket Price – $15

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Inflation Adjusted – $112

1971

Average Ticket Price – $15

Inflation Adjusted – $106

1972

Average Ticket Price – $15

Inflation Adjusted – $103

1973

Average Ticket Price – $15

Inflation Adjusted – $99

1974

Average Ticket Price – $15

Inflation Adjusted – $91

1975

Average Ticket Price – $20

Inflation Adjusted – $108

1976

Average Ticket Price – $20

Inflation Adjusted – $101

1977

Average Ticket Price – $20

Inflation Adjusted – $96

1978

Average Ticket Price – $30

Inflation Adjusted – $135

1979

Average Ticket Price – $30

Inflation Adjusted – $123

1980

Average Ticket Price – $30

Inflation Adjusted – $108

1981

Average Ticket Price – $40

Inflation Adjusted – $129

1982

Average Ticket Price – $40

Inflation Adjusted – $119

1983

Average Ticket Price – $40

Inflation Adjusted – $115

1984

Average Ticket Price – $60

Inflation Adjusted – $166

This year began the Super Bowl’s modern ticket price practices. While tickets remained relatively inexpensive to what fans expect to pay in 2020, up until 1984, prices had remained largely stable with only occasional, modest jumps. From this point on that practice ended.

1985

Average Ticket Price – $60

Inflation Adjusted – $160

1986

Average Ticket Price – $75

Inflation Adjusted – $192

1987

Average Ticket Price – $75

Inflation Adjusted – $190

1988

Average Ticket Price – $100

Inflation Adjusted – $243

1989

Average Ticket Price – $100

Inflation Adjusted – $232

1990

Average Ticket Price – $125

Inflation Adjusted – $276

1991

Average Ticket Price – $150

Inflation Adjusted – $313

1992

Average Ticket Price – $150

Inflation Adjusted – $305

1993

Average Ticket Price – $175

Inflation Adjusted – $345

1994

Average Ticket Price – $175

Inflation Adjusted – $337

1995

Average Ticket Price – $200

Inflation Adjusted – $374

1996

Average Ticket Price – $275 to $350

Inflation Adjusted – $501 to $637

Ticket prices in 1996 are noteworthy because this is arguably when the Super Bowl begins to take on modern pricing practices. This year represents a big jump in prices, and from 1996 onward, prices not only continued to increase; they did so dramatically. This year is also an outlier because it will appear that ticket prices decrease afterward.

1997

Average Ticket Price – $275

Inflation Adjusted – $486

1998

Average Ticket Price – $275

Inflation Adjusted – $478

1999

Average Ticket Price – $325

Inflation Adjusted – $556

2000

Average Ticket Price – $325

Inflation Adjusted – $541

2001

Average Ticket Price – $325

Inflation Adjusted – $522

2002

Average Ticket Price – $400

Inflation Adjusted – $635

2003

Average Ticket Price – $500

Inflation Adjusted – $774

2004

Average Ticket Price – $600

Inflation Adjusted – $911

2005

Average Ticket Price – $600

Inflation Adjusted – $885

2006

Average Ticket Price – $700

Inflation Adjusted – $992

2007

Average Ticket Price – $700

Inflation Adjusted – $972

2008

Average Ticket Price – $900

Inflation Adjusted – $1,199

It is within the past decade or so that Super Bowl tickets have become truly a luxury for the rich, or those willing to save hard. From this point on, prices begin to leap by hundreds of dollars between most years.

2009

Average Ticket Price – $1,000

Inflation Adjusted – $1,332

2010

Average Ticket Price – $1,000

Inflation Adjusted – $1,297

2011

Average Ticket Price – $1,200

Inflation Adjusted – $1,532

2012

Average Ticket Price – $1,200

Inflation Adjusted – $1,488

2013

Average Ticket Price – $1,250

Inflation Adjusted – $1,526

2014

Average Ticket Price – $1,500

Inflation Adjusted – $1,803

2015

Average Ticket Price – $2,000

Inflation Adjusted – $2,406

2016

Average Ticket Price – $2,500

Inflation Adjusted – $2,967

2017

Average Ticket Price – $2,500

Inflation Adjusted – $2,894

2018

Average Ticket Price – $2,500

Inflation Adjusted – $2,836

2019

Average Ticket Price – $2,900 – $4,300

Inflation Adjusted – $3,239 – $4,803

2020

Average Ticket Price – $7,172

Inflation Adjusted – $7,816

2021

Average Ticket Price – $8,609

Inflation Adjusted – $9,253

2022

At time of writing, the average ticket to Super Bowl LVI is $8,869, a far cry from when you could see the game for the equivalent of about $91.