Brisk ticket sales in Allegiant Stadium


Allegiant Stadium will go cashless and high ticket sales Image: Las Vegas Raiders

The Raiders has put to rest all doubts as to how viable Las Vegas is as an National Football League (NFL) market as tickets sold like hot cakes and outpaced even the most optimistic projections.

After that COVID-19 let hell loose on the entire world and decimated the live event market.

Allegiant Stadium is a domed stadium located in Paradise, Nevada, United States. It serves as the home stadium for the National Football League (NFL)’s Las Vegas Raiders and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) Rebels college football team.

Looking at how fatal the virus was proving to be, Raiders owner Mark Davis decided he wasn’t going to pick and choose which of his customers will be actually allowed to attend games in the team’s inaugural season, with him leading to declare that the 2020 season would be played sans supporters at Allegiant Stadium.

Davis wrote in a letter to fans, “The decision ensures fairness to you, our (personal seat license) holders (PSLs), given the challenges and potential inequities associated with determining who can and cannot attend specific games if the stadium were to operate at a reduced capacity. While the current situation is not how any of us envisioned celebrating the opening of Allegiant Stadium, when circumstances permit we look forward to sharing an unparalleled game day experience in the magnificent stadium you helped to build.”

Money paid for the 2020 season tickets was automatically rolled over to pay for the 2021 season, though fans had the option to receive a full refund instead.

Much before the plush venue was completed, tickets were all sold out for home games of the inaugural season at Allegiant Stadium. Those tickets were all the rage in the secondary market. Most of those tickets were snatched up through the purchase of PSLs, which were attached to about 55,000 of the 65,000 seats in the venue. The one-time PSL fees ranged from $500 to $75,000.

The Raiders’ original stadium budget (Allegiant Stadium) required the team to raise about $250 million in the form of PSL sales. Instead, they exceeded that expectations and generated close to $550 million. Most of that money was reinvested into the facility with connectivity, fixture and art upgrades, along with an addition of an end-zone field club.

Seats that didn’t have PSLs attached to them were for suites or retained by the Raiders for internal needs and visiting teams.

PSL holders own the right to purchase season tickets for that seat every year. A PSL holder can have those rights revoked and sold to someone else if they fail to maintain season tickets.

Fans that missed out have the option to join a waiting list. Season tickets in the far upper corners of the arena start at $65 for a 10-game home schedule that includes two preseason contests, which have been eliminated this year because of the pandemic.

Prices go up to $450 per game for the middle section of the lower level between the 45-yard lines. There are 17 price levels for Raiders tickets, not including the premium seating options.

Going cashless

Allegiant Stadium will be the first arena in American pro sports to open as a cashless venue in toto. A statement on the Raiders’ website read, “As part of our ongoing dedication to provide our fans and patrons with a world-class sports and live entertainment experience, and in response to feedback from our most loyal customers, cash will not be accepted as a form of payment at any stadium-controlled parking location or within Allegiant Stadium.”

The statement further stated, “We are thrilled about the impact on the fan experience, as cashless transactions are expected to significantly increase our speed of service, meaning shorter lines, getting fans back to their seats faster. A survey of our PSL holders also showed that our fans overwhelmingly agree, as a huge majority prefer cashless payment options.”

The decision is also in harmony with recent guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak’s leadership in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, through both his medical advisory team and emergency instruction coaxing businesses to adopt contactless payment systems as the Raiders stated in their website, “Cashless transactions promote the overall health, security, and public safety of our fans and PSL holders.”

Using valid debit or credit cards, fans can pay for items or they can even go in for mobile wallets including Apple Pay, Google Pay or Samsung Pay. For fans who only carry cash to the stadium, several cash-to-card kiosks will be in place throughout the venue where fans can exchange cash for a pre-paid card that can be used both inside and outside the stadium.

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