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How to plan a trip to the Super Bowl on a budget

New Orleans, LA, United States
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i went to super bowl 47 in new orleans in 2012. Here is my psa for what I learned from my super bowl trip and tips for your own future trip.
1. Book your flight in aug/sep of each beginning football season using Southwest because they offer 2 free checked bags (you'll need this) and no change or cancellation fees! I met a guy who spent $2000 just for flight! I paid $377 for mine...
2. Find a cheap bed and breakfast or hotel as close to the action as possible. check airbnb.com and make sure they have good reviews and friendly cancellation policy. God forbid your team doesn't make it to the super bowl, you need to get your money back.
3. Always bring a sharpie and camera and extra phone and camera battery with you. You never know what famous person you'll see and the super bowl probably isn't in your hometown.
4. Go early and stay late. Get in on wed and leave Tues. it worked very well for me with enough time for nfl events and sightseeing. If you do not have enough vacation hours, leave late on Monday after super bowl sunday.
5. If you're going in pairs, buy tickets the morning of the game from primesports.Com. They are the cheapest ticket broker and reliable. You maximize the value of tickets when brokers gotta unload them. If you want to lock in tickets earlier buy within 2 hours right after your team wins their conference championship game. the next window to buy super bowl tickets at a great value is late Thursday until kickoff.
6. You can save $185 if you bypass official team tailgate party because you don't know which celebrity players show up and free food wine and beer is overrated when you are pressed for time trying to stuff it all within an hour.
7. Save that money and don't buy souvenirs before the super bowl unless it's a football for autographs. You must go to the official nfl shop at whatever convention center the nfl experience is at the morning after super bowl. This is the sale of a lifetime! Everything in there will be 75% off! $5 shirts, hats, all official nfl and Nike gear. Load up and pack your free 2nd checked bag with your team's swag.

New Orleans is a great city. I'd recommend eating at Acme Oyster, Butcher, Johnny Poboys, and Dragos for the oysters. visit the WW2 museum and walk around Bourbon Street. if you never been to Bourbon...think: cheap drinks + bars + strip clubs + restaurants + mounted police + smell of alcohol/puke + lots of people all on one street. you'll either love it and want to keep going back or hate it and avoid it the rest of your trip; only way to know is to go :)
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