The Business & Pleasure of Sports

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Miami Dolphins raise some ticket prices, freeze and lower others

More details on Dolphins 2010 ticket prices than I was able to include in today's story:

The Dolphins are increasing prices on more than half the seats at Sun Life Stadium next season, but offering significant cost-savings and extras to fans who buy season -- rather than single game -- tickets.

In the first major price restructuring in three years, the team is raising prices on 56 percent of seats, and freezing prices for 31 percent and reducing 13 percent. Six new categories show an eye to pricing seats in the shade and closer to the 50-yard line higher than those in sunny and endzone locations.

Season ticket prices range from $34 a game in the “Phan Zone” on the 400 level of the east end zone -- $31 for fans who renew by March 31 – up to $120 in the Lower Prime South -- 100 level seats on the shady, home side between the 20-yard lines. On a single game basis, Phan Zone seats rise to $45 and Lower Prime South to $150.

New season ticket holder benefits: Game Day Vision -- handheld devices that show replays, different camera angles, other games and fantasy statistics -- available only to club and suite holders last season will be given to all season ticket holders – one for every two seats in an account. Other amenities include priority sales for concerts at the stadium and booklets of buy one-get one concession offers.

“We’ve said the season ticket base is the lifeblood of a successful sports franchise, and we need to walk to walk, not just talk the talk,” Dolphins CEO Mike Dee said.

The team hired consulting firm, Analysis Group, to evaluate ticket prices and demand as the basis for devising the new pricing structure.

Renewal packets were sent to season ticket holders this week.

The Dolphins sold 49,415 season tickets last year -- up 7 percent from 46,131 in 2008. Dee said the team hopes to reach 55,000 in 2010.

The average ticket price for early season ticket renewers is $70.54 compared to an average $92.69 for single game tickets. Frozen and reduced seats are in 400 level: Upper Corner Endzone seats remain $42 apiece for season ticket holders and $52 for individual game buyers; Upper Sideline seats are dropping from $70 to $60 for season ticket buyers and from $80 to $70 for single game tickets.

The team has also altered prices on the club level, taking into account that endzone tickets aren't as desirable as sideline ones. East endzone seats, which dropped from $262 per game to $92 last year during construction on the Dolphins offices, will be $125 this year, but include only limited access to club amenities. The west endzone club seats also will have limited amenities and will cost $150 per game down from $262.50 last season.

Parking prices will be frozen at $25 to $28, team officials said.

Dee reiterated team owner Steve Ross’ mantra that the team must create an entertaining game-day stadium experience to entice people off their couches.

“One of the biggest competitors to growing our season ticket base and attendance in general is how good the family room experience has become,” Dee said. “Football in high definition is perhaps as good as anything in high definition that you can get on television, so we have to be better than we’ve been in the past, we have to offer new amenities.”

Categories: Miami Dolphins (186), NFL (178), Tickets (126)

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About the author
CRAIG DAVIS In more than 33 years at the Sun Sentinel, Craig Davis has written about a wide variety of sports topics from baseball to yachting, fishing to triathlons, and also worked as a copy editor and page designer. Recently he reported on local sports, including running, swimming, cycling, equestrian and beach volleyball. He enjoys sports as a participant as well as a spectator, is active in the South Florida running scene plays in the curling club at Saveology Iceplex. This blog offers a glimpse at the business side of sports in the interest of enhancing enjoyment of the games and sporting options as a spectator as well as a participant.
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