GREEN BAY - Green Bay Packers season-ticket holders will dig deeper again this year.
The Packers said Thursday that season-ticket prices will increase $7 across the board for the coming season. For Green Package holders with six regular-season games and one preseason, that means an increase of $49 per seat for the season. For Gold Package buyers with two regular-season games and one preseason, the total will be $21 for the season.
The Packers also included prices for a wild-card playoff game, should they host one.
Chicago-area season-ticket holder Jeff Krautkramer said another nominal price increase won't cause him to drop his tickets, but he wonders what the tipping point might be.
"When does staying at home outweigh the high ticket prices and the drive, in my case? Imagine what happens when the team isn't competitive," he said.
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This is the eighth consecutive season prices have increased. Ticket prices did not increase from 2007 through 2009 and the Packers fell to near the bottom of the NFL in average ticket price. Other NFL teams were not pleased, reasoning that because the Packers sell out every game and have a long waiting list, they should charge more. Visiting teams receive a share of ticket revenue.
Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy said the team wants to keep prices in the middle of the NFL, balancing a fine line between keeping other teams happy by charging enough and Green Bay fans happy by not charging too much.
"We project this increase will place us just below the NFL average," Murphy said.
Krautkramer sells half his Green Package tickets to cover the cost, and last year's schedule was challenging for that.
"This was the first year in a long time it was hard to sell tickets for anything above face value. Not sure if it was because of the games, such as on Christmas Eve, or the already high ticket prices," he said.
Darryl Westlund of Mosinee bought the Gold Package because he didn't think he could afford the Green Package.
"I do feel the price of tickets may very well be approaching the point at which we may have to reconsider purchasing them," he said. "We were on the waiting list for many years and were delighted when we were told that we were in line to be able to buy tickets for the games."
Before increases started in 2010, end zone tickets were $59, end zone to 20-yard line were $64 and between the 20s were $72. For 2017, those tickets will cost $102, $115 and $129, respectively.
Payment is due in the Packers' ticket office March 31.
Totallymoney.com determined the Packers were the 10th most expensive team to be a fan of in the NFL. It said it would cost an individual Packers fan $2,560.47 a year, based on 2016 ticket prices. The survey includes the cost of tickets, parking, beer and soft drinks, hot dogs, a program, a shirt and hat. The most expensive tickets were those for the Chicago Bears, at $131.90, followed by the New England Patriots at $130.30.
In the NFC North, the Detroit Lions raised tickets prices for 2017, the Chicago Bears increased ticket prices overall (though some seats will be less), and the Minnesota Vikings did not raise prices.
The Packers will continue the lottery that makes tickets available to Brown County residents on a per-game basis. Originally the lottery included 4,000 tickets, but the Packers reduced that to 3,000 tickets last year, saying that in recent years it required two drawings for all the tickets to be claimed.
The Packers also are offering Green Package fans the opportunity to lock in lower cost playoff tickets should the Packers play a wild-card playoff game at Lambeau Field. Under the Pay as We Play option, fans will not be charged for those tickets unless the team plays, but they must commit to buying seats when they pay for their other tickets. Listed are the early purchase price, the regular price (which applies to divisional round games as well) and the cost of the conference championship game.
» End zone seats — $92, $124, $192.
» South end zone, 700 level — 101, $112, $212.
» End zone to 20-yard line — $104, $136, $222.
» South end zone, 600 level — $108, $139, $223.
» Between the 20-yard lines — $117, $154, $247.
Club and suite ticket holders also were mailed invoices this week. The price of those seats are set by client contracts, but they also were offered lower prices for the wild-card game if they commit.
Lambeau Field is the fourth-largest stadium in the NFL based on official capacity. Several stadiums have more capacity when adding special seating and standing room only.
The Packers set an attendance record of 79,704 during the Jan. 11, 2015, 26-21 playoff victory over the Dallas Cowboys. The regular-season record is 78,526, set in an 18-16 loss to the Detroit Lions on Nov. 15, 2015. Total stadium capacity is 81,435.
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Packers ticket prices
Green Package tickets (with 2016 prices in parentheses)
» End zone seats — $52 ($45) preseason, $102 ($95) regular season, total cost of $664 ($575).
» South end zone, 700 level — $57 ($50) preseason, $112 ($105) regular season, total cost of $729 ($680).
» End zone to 20-yard line — $60 ($53) preseason, $115 ($108) regular season, total cost of $750 ($701).
» South end zone, 600 level — $64 ($57) preseason, $119 ($112) regular season, total cost of $778 ($729).
» Between the 20-yard lines • South end zone, 600 level — $69 ($62) preseason, $129 ($122) regular season, total cost of $843 ($794).
Gold Package tickets (with 2016 prices in parentheses)
» End zone seats — $52 ($45) preseason, $102 ($95) regular season, total cost of $256 ($235).
» South end zone, 700 level — $57 ($50) preseason, $112 ($105) regular season, total cost of $281 ($260).
» End zone to 20-yard line — $60 ($53) preseason, $115 ($108) regular season, total cost of $290 ($269).
» South end zone, 600 level — $64 ($57) preseason, $119 ($112) regular season, total cost of $302 ($281).
» Between the 20-yard lines • South end zone, 600 level — $69 ($62) preseason, $129 ($122) regular season, total cost of $327 ($306).