Are you ready for some football? The 2023 to 2024 NFL season kicks off soon, and fans are eager to get in the stands and cheer on their favorite teams. But as diehards know, the cost of tailgates, tickets, food, and merch means fandom doesn’t always come cheap.
We wanted to know which fans are spending the most money to support their squad. To find out, the FinanceBuzz team surveyed fans of all 32 NFL teams to find out how much money they spend on things like food and alcohol when they go to games, as well as how much they spend on team gear and apparel each year.
- Key findings
- NFL fans who spend the most on stadium concessions
- NFL fans who spend the least on stadium concessions
- NFL fans who spend the most on alcohol
- NFL fans who spend the most on merchandise
- NFL fans who spend the least on merchandise
- Team spending standings
- How to save while supporting your squad
- Los Angeles Rams fans spend the most on average of any fanbase on concessions at in-person games ($176). Carolina Panthers fans spend the least ($61).
- San Francisco 49ers fans spend more than any other fanbase on in-stadium alcohol — $60 on average. Panthers fans spend the least on alcohol, at just $13.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans spend more annually on merchandise than any other team ($229).
- New England Patriots fans are the most frugal when it comes to team merch, averaging just $78 annually.
NFL fans who spend the most on stadium concessions
For many fans, sporting events just aren’t the same without snacks. So which team’s fans are spending the most to keep themselves fed at the stadium?
Los Angeles Rams fans spend the most on in-stadium food and beverages, dropping a whopping $176.17 on average. That amount is nearly $25 more than the $152.26 Chicago Bears fans spend on average, which is the second-highest amount in the league.
The average amount Rams fans spend on concessions is also nearly $60 higher than the $116.51 that Los Angeles Chargers fans spend on average, which is still the 10th-most in the NFL.
This is a notable difference given that the Rams and Chargers share a home stadium and presumably offer the same concessions at the same prices to both fanbases, meaning that Rams fans are buying more (or at least more expensive) concessions than their fellow Angelinos at SoFi Stadium.
NFL fans who spend the least on stadium concessions
While Rams fans are willing to shell out the big bucks to fill everyone’s bellies at the stadium, other teams’ fans prefer to save more money.
Carolina Panthers fans are the league’s most frugal when they attend games, averaging just $61.13 spent on concessions per game. That amount is more than $115 less than what Rams fans spend on food and drinks when attending a game.
Fans of the Tennessee Titans, Minnesota Vikings, Jacksonville Jaguars, Buffalo Bills, and Cleveland Browns also spend more than $100 less than Rams fans on concessions on average.
NFL fans who spend the most on alcohol
While Rams fans spend the most money on all food and drink purchases at games, they fall all the way down to sixth when it comes to how much they spend on alcoholic beverages specifically.
For alcohol expenses, a different NFC West fanbase reigns supreme. San Francisco 49ers fans spend nearly $60 per game on alcohol when they attend games live. Chicago Bears fans spend the second-most on alcohol, and New York Jets fans are third.
NFL fans who spend the most on merchandise
Of course, stadium concessions aren’t the only way fans spend money to support their favorite squad. Fans also show their team pride by buying merchandise and apparel.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans have enjoyed perhaps the greatest stretch in team history in the last few seasons, as Tom Brady led the team to three straight playoff appearances, including a victory in Super Bowl LV in 2021.
One way fans have responded to the Buccaneers’ success is by buying lots of merch. In fact, Buccaneers fans spend more on team gear than any other fanbase, to the tune of $228.95 annually on average.
Arizona Cardinals fans are a close second, however, at $228.48 per year on average. That cost comes within 50 cents of Bucs backers in terms of how much they spend on team merchandise.
In third place are fans of the defending Super Bowl Champion, Kansas City Chiefs, with an average annual merch spend of $207.33.
NFL fans who spend the least on merchandise
Not every fanbase spends major moolah on merchandise the way Bucs fans do. These teams’ fans choose other ways to show their support.
Fans of Tom Brady’s original team, the New England Patriots, are the group that spends the least amount of money per year on team merchandise. Patriots fans shell out just $77.78 per year on average.
Cleveland Browns fans spend just 25 cents more than Patriots fans, at $78.01 per year on average. And Minnesota Vikings fans are the third-most frugal in this regard, spending just $78.33 per year on average.
Team spending standings
To get a handle on fan spending across the entire league, we found the average amount fans of every team in the league spend on food, alcohol, and merch each year.
In the AFC, New England Patriots fans spend more money on in-game concessions than any other fanbase, spending $129.01 on average every time they go to a game in person. Interestingly, those same fans spend less per year on merchandise than any other team in the entire NFL, shelling out just $77.76 on average for team-branded clothes and apparel.
While Pats fans spend the most on total food and drink, they are outdone by a division rival when it comes to spending on alcoholic beverages at games. Jets fans spend an average of $57.78 per year just on alcohol when they see a live game. That’s the highest amount of any AFC fanbase.
Fans of three different NFC teams — the Los Angeles Rams, the Chicago Bears, and the San Francisco 49ers — all spend more on concessions than the top AFC team. 49ers and Bears fans are also the top two biggest spenders on alcoholic beverages at games in the entire league, while fans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers spend more money on merchandise than any other fanbase in the NFL.
How to save while supporting your squad
No matter who you root for this NFL season, here are some ways to save money while supporting your team:
- Save on team gear while shopping online. Outside of the team store, there is nowhere better than the internet to find team clothing and apparel. Be sure to check out our review of Capital One Shopping to see how it could help you save money while filling up your digital shopping cart.
- Get rewarded for online purchases. Not all rewards credit cards are created equal. Our breakdown of the best credit cards for online shopping can help you maximize points when buying things like team gear and game tickets online.
- Earn points and rewards for the things you buy everyday (including game day). Fans support their favorite teams around the clock, and sometimes that means buying snacks before the big game, getting new team gear, or buying last-minute game tickets. Using one of the best credit cards for daily use is a great way to get rewarded for all those purchases and so much more.
FinanceBuzz surveyed more than 1,100 NFL fans in July and August 2023. A minimum of 20 responses per team were collected and responses were then averaged.