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Prices soar for Super Bowl-goers

Following the Falcons to the Super Bowl might be a bucket-list trip for some fans, but it will come at a dizzying cost. Prices are soaring for airline flights to Houston, for hotels in the city, and especially for tickets to the game.

According to StubHub, the cheapest ticket available Monday was $3,525, while the price for tickets sold has ranged from $2,950 to $15,432.

About 8 percent of the sales came from Georgia, and 3 percent from Massachusetts. About 38 percent of sales are coming from Texas.

TickPick, another secondary ticket marketplace, said the cheapest ticket for the game available on its website Monday was $3,615, in the upper end zone.

“Since the Falcons weren’t really an expected Super Bowl team, it’s tough to forecast the direction of prices,” TickPick CEO Brett Goldberg said. “Atlanta is close to Houston and if the fan base travels in numbers, that very well can keep prices stable.”

The most expensive tickets were in the 100-level, priced at $7,000 to $16,100. There were also 28-person suites in the 200-level section going for $425,000 on Monday.

But the lowest available ticket price can swing as low as $2,000 to as high as $5,000. And last year, the prices for some of the best seats decreased the most leading up to the Super Bowl, according to Goldberg.

To get ardent fans to the game, Southwest Airlines is adding flights from Atlanta and Boston into Houston on Friday Feb. 3 and Monday Feb. 6. The Dallas-based airline operates five daily flights from Atlanta to Houston, and is adding two additional flights between Houston and Atlanta the day after the game.

Southwest on Monday was listing fares as low as around $585. But it also had pricier Business Select fares listed at close to $800, for refundable tickets with priority boarding and other benefits.

Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines was listing air fares Monday of $913 to $1,096 roundtrip Atlanta to Houston, departing Friday and returning Monday. Flying out Saturday and returning Monday could cost as much as $1,330.

But if you were willing to fly in Tuesday, stay for a week and return Wednesday, you could get fares as low as $344 roundtrip Monday — a price that more closely reflects what it typically costs to fly the route when there isn’t a big football game going on.

As for room and board, the choices were already shrinking on Monday, at least for a room within a few miles of NRG Stadium.

Just one left, warned Travelocity, as it offered the $1,375 a night room at the 8080 Main hotel, less than a mile from NRG. Not far away, the Lexington Hotel had four rooms left early Monday afternoon for just $955 each. Per night.

The Residence Inn by Marriott had but one room left at $872 a night, as did the Moody Manor, a bit to the north, and a bit lighter on the wallet at $387.

And you could go a lot farther away and pay a lot less.

But that would also mean extra expense for transportation. And the more Super Bowl-related events you want to attend, the cost of transit will add up.

The average visitor to Houston spends $389 per day, according to the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau.

“But that’s during a regular time period and certainly it doesn’t apply to Super Bowl when hotel rates are going to be considerably higher,” said A.J. Mistretta, spokesman for the bureau.

Falcons packages marketed by NFL On Location Experiences start at $4,999 and rise up to $11,799. They include parties and seats and concerts. They don’t seem to include hotel rooms.

Monday afternoon, Travelocity was steadily reporting more than 9,500 people searching for hotels in Houston.

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