Academics Estimate the Average Cost Per American Attending a Super Bowl Party will be $79

Dr. Kent MacDonald, Dr. Timothy G. Nash

Friday, February 11th, 2022

Will you pay 5.9% more to attend a Super Bowl Party this weekend?

The key indicator of inflation at the end of 2021 showed consumer prices up 7%, with much concern over the direction of inflation for 2022. To make matters worse, data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows U.S. Consumer Price Inflation at the end of January is now running at an annualized rate of 7.5%.

The Wall Street Journal is calling for 5% food inflation in the first half of 2022, with our McNair Center predicting that food prices could reach 7% or higher by the end of 2022.

Two factors will drive higher food prices in 2022. The first will be our erratic and out-of-sync U.S. and global supply chain. The second and primary cause of higher future U.S. food inflation will be the continuous expansion of the U.S. Federal Reserve Monetary Policy. Or simply put, the U.S. government will continue to print more money each month than the economy is producing in goods, services and or assets. With more money chasing relatively fewer goods, services and assets, prices will continue to rise. Prices are now going up 7.5% and will likely increase further in 2022.

We carefully analyzed data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Federal Reserve Bank, Statista, and the National Retail Federation on issues related to the upcoming 56th Super Bowl. We then drew the following conclusions on money spent on and around the Super Bowl and related festivities.

We conclude that roughly 185 million Americans — or 55.6% of the U.S. population — will tune into the Super Bowl this Sunday on televisions, computers, handheld devices, or via radio. A record 117 million people will watch the game on television and roughly 90 million of the 117 million will either attend or host a Super Bowl party. An estimated $14.6 billion will be spent on Super Bowl parties. The average cost per American attending a Super Bowl party in 2022 will be roughly $79 per person — up from $74.55 for Super Bowl 2021. If cost estimates for 2022 are correct, Super Bowl parties will cost 5.9% more this year. Just another indicator that inflation has not subsided.

Individuals cited numerous reasons for wanting to watch the 2022 Super Bowl, with 40% of Americans tuning in “for the love of the game;” 21% stating they want to watch or listen to the commercials; and 18% listing the halftime show as their reason for watching. Socializing with friends and family were the next two most popular reasons for watching the Super Bowl.

Of the $14.6 billion to be spent on Super Bowl LVI gatherings and related items, one or more of the following purchases were most popular with the surveyed. Fully 79% of the money will be spent on food and beverages; 11% on game apparel; 9% on new televisions (a Super Bowl game is one of the most important reasons why Americans purchase a new television annually), with 8% spent on decorations and 5% spent on new furniture.

According to Statista, the most expensive Super Bowl parties over the last decade before 2022 were 2013 at $82.30, 2015 at $89.05, 2016 at $82.19 and 2020 at $88.65.

The super bowl is broadcast to 185 countries in seven languages and attracts 800 million listeners and viewers worldwide. As popular as the Super Bowl is in the United States, it is estimated that the World Cup Soccer Championship game, held once every four years attracts, somewhere between 1.5-2.5 billion people globally.

In addition, 31.4 million people are estimated to gamble on the Super Bowl this year, spending $7.6 billion in casinos and across living room tables.

Whether you are in a casino, living room, sports bar or have the money to travel to Los Angeles, inflation will ensure we will pay much more to enjoy Super Bowl LVI.