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Paying $4,000 For Super Bowl Tickets May Be Crazy, But Possibly Worth The Memories That Will Last A Lifetime

Published 1/30/08 (Modified 3/9/11)
By MoneyBlueBook

When I read about the crazy sums of money football fans have been plunking down for a chance to watch the New York Giants play the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII (42nd), I was shocked, but not surprised. Just for the record, no - I didn't pay more than $4,000 for a pair of Super Bowl tickets to watch the two best football teams in the nation play this coming weekend. But I understand why feverish and passionate football fans would pay that kind of money to support their team (I've done it before, although not nearly to that level of degree).

If I were a Giants or Pats fan, I would have given some serious thought to shelling out the high scalper-driven prices to secure the coveted tickets and necessary hotel rooms for the chance to experience the event of a lifetime. Looking back at my earlier days, I wish I had jumped on the exciting opportunities when I had the chance. When my college alma mater made it to the men's NCAA basketball championship game I was still in graduate school and didn't have the financial means or the ability to take time off from classes to attend. Looking back I wish I had dug down deep and made the effort, because ultimately my school went on to win that national title game. I missed an opportunity that may not happen again for some time. Afterwards, I promised myself - never again would I give up such a once in a lifetime opportunity on the account of mere time or cost, in the absence of other considerations.

Money Spent On Memories Vs. Money Spent On Material Goods

While I personally am very wary about spending exorbitant amounts of money on material goods, I don't seem to have the same aversion towards spending money on precious experiences that have the possibility of creating everlasting memories. Unlike the substance of memories, I view tangible goods as items with limited and fleeting lifespans that ultimately depreciate and wither away. Particularly with newly released electronic products like iPods and flat screen TV's, they frequently become outdated within months by the time the new updated model rolls around. Technology prices drop fast and what was top of the line one day soon becomes yesterday's news the next. At the end of the day, all material goods break down, wear out, and eventually become obsolete, but memories are forever. Memories and experiences are retained in the recesses of our minds, enriching our human experience and growing ever more valuable as time passes. As we age, those fond memories from years past become priceless treasures (it's cheesy but true).

When I was little, I spent a great deal of money and time on buying and playing video games. But looking back, it wasn't the computer technology, gaming systems, or game cartridges that brought me joy - it was the experience and cherished moments I had when playing games with friends and family. I think it's important to practice a reasonably frugal lifestyle, but some expenditures are worth the financial price. There's nothing wrong with living it up within your means on occasion - just make sure you are spending your hard earned money towards the things that have residual and appreciative intangible value.

The stores of wealthier diehard Super Bowl fans paying upwards of $20,000 for a pair of front row seats to the greatest show on earth is indeed stunning, but if they are sharing the experience with their friends, spouses, and children, I say - more power to them. I just hope they are living within their means and not doing anything financially crazy like putting the entire amount on a high interest credit card they can't afford, just for a 3 hour thrill.

Opposed To Spending Money On a $5 Coffee Drink, But Okay With Spending $250 To Watch My Favorite Sports Team Play

I've noticed that I seem to have a selective form of frugality. I generally like to save on the little things in life by cutting back on smaller daily expenses like my old Starbucks coffee habit and by refraining from frequently updating my clothing wardrobe. However, I seem to have no problem spending larger sums of money on things like entertainment experiences that I truly care emotionally and passionately about. It's an odd form of frugal living that I sometimes wonder if others share as well.

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9 Responses to “Paying $4,000 For Super Bowl Tickets May Be Crazy, But Possibly Worth The Memories That Will Last A Lifetime” 

  1. Lily says:

    I'm totally with you. "You only live once" is not a great excuse for a venti mocha latte, but is much more reasonable for legitimate once-in-a-lifetime experiences like going to the Superbowl.

  2. jason says:

    Raymond !
    It seems, for you being frugal is the best way to judge the worth of the money. Isn't it ? So is it for me. I enjoy being frugal at times. Actually, if we have a limited income we need to make a proper money management. Moreover, to experience some of those things in life, which are difficult to achieve, we would have to sacrifice on some other things. So your philosophy of
    "Paying $4,000 For Super Bowl Tickets May Be Crazy, But Possibly worth the Memories That Will Last a Lifetime" is what I believe in as well. I would say "Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today." :)

  3. Raymond says:

    Well I agree with you guys. We definitely learn the value of money and the importance of life experiences by practicing reasonable frugality. It's wise not to splurge on frivolous things, but we certainly shouldn't limit ourselves for the sake of saving either.

  4. Lauren says:

    That's how I try to be...I still fall victim to the Starbucks craving a lot. I definitely agree that it's different about an experience and more worth it to splurge--maybe even things that aren't once in a lifetime, but still things that are special like going to see a play or taking a trip to an interesting place.

  5. dani says:

    I totally agree with you on spending $$ on experiences - my boyfriend and I have already had the discussion on how much we're willing to spend on Zep tickets if they tour -- and we're thinking in the $500-750 range. (We're in our mid-twenties, by the way.) I will have no regrets on dropping that amount of money on that concert.

  6. Raymond says:

    Hi Dani,
    I have a few bands myself that I wouldn't mind plucking down major money for the chance to see in concert. A few Christian bands - Delirious etc, and even a few mainstream rock/hip hop groups - Wallflowers, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and N.E.R.D. featuring Pharrell!

  7. wealthy_1 says:

    By the time I realized that I could spend money on memories, I was up to my eyeballs in debt from spending money on material things. To this day I couldn't tell you what I bought. Last year I competed in several bodybuilding competitions. It was very expensive, but I look at it as money spent on the experience.

  8. zak says:


  9. Ione Jeanes says:

    It's exciting that the Huskers is joining the Big Ten. The new season promises to be esciting. Yowzers

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