Die-hard fans of the Seattle Seahawks, the New England Patriots, and the singer Katy Perry will travel to Phoenix for Super Bowl XLIX on Sunday, February 1.
Besides the thousands of football fanatics, the Super Bowl also draws a large number of companies--from advertising firms to corporate sponsors--involved in the big business behind the big game. The Super Bowl has become a giant corporate schmoozefest, and there are even corporate travel agencies like Tuchman Sports Enterprises and EB Corporate dedicated solely to arranging trips for businesses to entertain clients or reward employees at coveted sporting events.
Because of the surge of affluent business travelers going to the Super Bowl, hotels know to raise room rates drastically for that weekend. By now, all hotels near the University of Phoenix Stadium are booked. According to Booking.com, Phoenix hotels currently have 10 percent vacancy with a few rooms still available six miles from the game. Rates for these rooms range anywhere from $400 to $1,300.
Airbnb to the rescue? Kind of. A handful of private rooms are still available within walking distance of the stadium. Hosts have learned to play the hotel game, however, and have raised their rates as well. A private room is going for about $600 a night, not including cleaning fees, taxes, and Airbnb's fee.
Location seems to be the main draw being advertised by these Airbnb hosts, with listings mentioning, "Just steps away from the big game," "5 minutes from Super Bowl," and "One block from stadium." Some hosts with Airbnb rooms that are further away have even offered to provide transportation to their guests.
Since the University of Phoenix stadium is located next to a large condo housing development, nearby two- and three-bedrooms are more common but more expensive, ranging from $1,000 to $2,000 a night for entire apartments. This could be a more feasible option if traveling with colleagues. Considering the fact that stadium parking alone will cost $100, these rates don't seem so unreasonable.
One generous Airbnb host is even throwing in four upper deck Super Bowl tickets, included in the $5,000-a-night rental fee.