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Watching the big game at home (or at your favorite sports bar) has its own perks and benefits – you get access to countless chicken wings and free-flowing beer, and you get to check out those much-talked-about overpriced commercials in real time.
However, nothing really compares to watching the game live at the stadium. Seeing it all unfold right before your very eyes surrounded by the thundering sound of the cheering crowd always brings a unique quality to the whole experience that makes it feel like an even more momentous occasion.
Of course, most of it is thanks to the hard work of the two teams on the field who do their best to snatch that trophy and the performers who keep us entertained along the way. At the same time, though, a huge part of the experience comes from the atmosphere created by the venue where the game is played.
If you are a football fan, chances are visiting every field that has hosted the big game has crossed your mind on more than one occasion. In the 56-year history of the U.S. football championship, 24 stadiums have hosted the big game, including this year’s SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, CA. Today, 19 of them are still in existence, allowing you to see in person most of the places where American sports history was made.
To help you achieve that life-long dream, the team of travel enthusiasts at Wanderu decided to find the easiest and cheapest way to travel to all venues in one journey. At Wanderu, we are always dedicated to bringing you the best available travel deals, so let’s dive right in and find out how you can finally cross this epic trip off your bucket list:
Map & Itinerary
Click on each of the routes below to book your tickets:
|San Francisco to Palo Alto||Stanford Stadium||$8.25|
|Palo Alto to Santa Clara||Levi's Stadium||$3.75|
|Santa Clara to San Jose||$3.75|
|San Jose to Los Angeles||
LA Memorial Coliseum
Rose Bowl SoFi Stadium
|Los Angeles to Phoenix||$55|
|Phoenix to Glendale, AZ||State Farm Stadium||$25|
|Glendale, AZ to Tempe, AZ||Sun Devil Stadium||$32|
|Tempe, AZ to Phoenix||$18|
|Phoenix to Dallas (DFW Airport)||$72|
|Dallas (DFW Airport) to Arlington, TX||AT&T Stadium||$28|
|Arlington, TX to Dallas (Downtown)||$24|
|Dallas to Houston||
|Houston to New Orleans||Caesars Superdome||$32|
|New Orleans to Tampa||Raymond James Stadium||$64|
|Tampa to Miami||Hard Rock Stadium||$24|
|Miami to Jacksonville||TIAA Bank Field||$40|
|Jacksonville to Atlanta||Mercedes-Benz Stadium||$34|
|Atlanta to Newark, NJ (EWR Airport)||$74|
|Newark (EWR Airport) to East Rutherford, NJ||MetLife Stadium||$29|
|East Rutherford, NJ to Newark (EWR Airport)||$29|
|Newark (EWR Airport) to Indianapolis||Lucas Oil Stadium||$133|
|Indianapolis to Detroit||Ford Field||$55|
|Detroit to Minneapolis||U.S. Bank Stadium||$75|
|Rideshare app ride|
- Bus fares are based on the average cost of a one-way ticket for the respective route available on Wanderu over a 30-day period.
- Flight fares are based on the average cost of a one-way plane ticket for the respective route based on information found on KAYAK.
- Commuter rail fares are based on the one-way fare for the featured route using Caltrain during off-peak times.
- Rideshare fares are based on the average cost of an UberX ride during off-peak hours.
To create this journey, we calculated the most efficient route to visit every city in one trip, and we also looked up the most cost effective way to do it without relying on your own vehicle. The resulting itinerary features nine bus rides, three commuter rail rides, four flights and a handful of Uber rides, connecting 21 cities across 10 states.
When it comes to the cost of the entire trip, we looked up the average price for each ride and it turns out that you can do it all for just under $1,000. For a trip of this magnitude, this total is quite the bargain. And with some long-distance bus rides on the itinerary, you can avoid spending money on a hotel or Airbnb in every place you visit, opting instead to rest on the bus while headed to your next destination.
With the majority of football stadiums on this list located in the West and Southwest, our journey begins in Northern California. While the first stadium on this trip is not technically in San Francisco, the Golden City is the biggest travel hub in the NoCal area, allowing you to easily get there from pretty much anywhere in the country by bus, train or plane.
Of course, if you are closer to the Midwest, you can start your journey in Minneapolis and follow the map above to make San Francisco your final destination. Either way, the total cost will be about the same.
Now let’s break down every leg of the journey, so you can plan your trip easily and efficiently:
1. Stanford, CA: Stanford Stadium
Chad Kainz / Flickr
From San Francisco, take the Caltrain commuter rail to the Palo Alto stop where you will find the first stadium on this trip, Stanford Stadium. As the name suggests, it’s located on the Stanford University campus. Even though Caltrain has a dedicated Stanford stop that’s even closer to the venue, the train stops there only during special events, so unless there’s a game or concert happening while you’re visiting, don’t plan on disembarking there as the train will simply pass by it without stopping.
The commuter train fare is based on the number of zones through which you travel from point A to point B, and in this case that’s three zones, so the fare would be $8.25.
Stanford Stadium has hosted the big game once. That was in 1985 when the San Francisco 49ers defeated the Miami Dolphins.
2. Santa Clara, CA: Levi’s Stadium
Naveen Venkatesan / Unsplash
Once you’ve checked out Stanford Stadium, get back onboard the commuter rail and travel a couple stops down to Mountain View Transit Center where you will get off and transfer over to the Orange Line of the San Jose Light Rail transit service. Head north for 12 stops and get off the Great America Station located right outside Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.
Like Stanford Stadium, Levi’s Stadium has hosted the football championship game once, in 2016, when the Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers.
3. Los Angeles, CA: LA Memorial Coliseum, Rose Bowl & SoFi Stadium
After visiting the most high-tech stadium in the world, it’s time to head south to Los Angeles for the next leg of your trip. To do that, take the Green Line of the Light Rail for 18 stops to Downtown San Jose and get off at the San Jose Diridon Station, located in close proximity to the Greyhound Bus Station. From there, hop on a bus and head over to the City of Angels.
In the greater LA area, you can find three stadiums that have hosted the big game several times – the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the Rose Bowl, and SoFi Stadium, host of this year’s game.
The bus will drop you off right at the heart of Downtown LA from where you can easily reach the Coliseum by jumping on the local Metro transit service towards the USC campus. Your trips to the Rose Bowl and SoFi Stadium will be a little more complicated as they are located in Pasadena and Inglewood respectively, making them easily accessible only by car. Therefore, as much as we wanted to avoid it, you will need to either rent a car or use a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft to get there and back, but that’s LA for ya.
BP Miller / Unsplash
The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum has hosted the big game twice, including the very first championship game in 1967 and the seventh edition in 1973. The iconic venue is also on track to become the only stadium in the world to have hosted the Summer Olympics three times when it welcomes the games in 2028. It has previously served as Olympics host in 1932 and 1984.
The Rose Bowl has hosted the big game a total of five times between 1977 and 1993. The stadium is one of the most famous special events venues in the Los Angeles area, frequently hosting college football games, soccer games, and concert performances by some of the world’s biggest artists, including Beyoncè, Michael Jackson, The Rolling Stones, and U2, among many others.
Pray it no photography / Flickr
SoFi Stadium is one of the newest sports and entertainment venues in the Los Angeles area, having opened in September 2020. The stadium will host the big game for the first time in 2022.
4. Phoenix, AZ: State Farm Stadium & Sun Devil Stadium
Now that the California portion of your trip is done, you will need to jump on a bus and head east to Phoenix, Arizona, where you will find two more stadiums within the city’s vicinity – State Farm Stadium (in Glendale, AZ) and Sun Devil Stadium (in Tempe, AZ).
As there are no direct public transit options to either venue, the fastest and most cost-effective way to check both out would be by jumping in an Uber. The good news is that they are each only about a 20 min ride from downtown Phoenix, so it won’t be too big of a burden on your wallet.
John Martinez Pavliga / Flickr
State Farm Stadium (formerly known as the University of Phoenix Stadium) has hosted the big game two times – in 2008 and 2014 – and it’s expected to host it again in 2023.
Ameer Basheer / Unsplash
Sun Devil Stadium played the role of host for the 30th edition of the game in 1996 when the Dallas Cowboys defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers.
5. Arlington, TX: AT&T Stadium
Trac Vu / Unsplash
The next leg on our journey will take you to Texas, more specifically Arlington, which is a city in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metropolitan Area. While you can catch a bus from Phoenix to Dallas and then make your way to Arlington using local transportation, that trip will take almost 22 hours and cost well over $100, so we figured flying would be not just faster but cheaper too.
The good news is that Arlington is not too far from the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, so you can easily take an Uber down to AT&T Stadium right from the airport in case you are that eager to visit the place where the Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers to become the 45th football champion in 2011.
6. Houston, TX: Rice Stadium & NRG Stadium
Head on over to Downtown Dallas where you will hop on a bus to the largest city in the Lone Star State, Houston. There, you get to cross two stadiums off your list. Luckily, they are both relatively close to each other and on the same public transit line, so making your way there from the bus station would be a breeze.
Faungg’s photos / Flickr
Rice Stadium is located, as the name suggests, on the Rice University campus. It has hosted the big game only once, in 1974.
Nicolas Henderson / Flickr
NRG Stadium is located a little further south, in NRG Park, next to the famous Houston Astrodome. The stadium has hosted the game twice – in 2004 and 2017 – and both times the New England Patriots came out as the champions.
7. New Orleans, LA: Caesars Superdome
Davide Gabino / Flickr
Once you’ve had your fill of Texas, jump on the next bus and head on over to the Big Easy. New Orleans has hosted the big game a total of 10 times and it’s scheduled to do it again in 2025. The first three times – in 1970, 1972 and 1975 – the games were played at the now-defunct Tulane Stadium, so sadly you can’t check out that location. Luckily, the other seven games (and the upcoming one) were played at the Caesars Superdome which is very much up and running for your viewing pleasure.
Located in the heart of New Orleans, Caesars Superdome is practically within walking distance of the bus station, so you can literally make it your first stop as soon as you set foot in the city. In addition to the big game, Caesars Superdome has hosted many other sporting events, as well as concerts and festivals, including the annual Essence Music Festival that has been a staple at the Superdome since 1995. In fact, because of that, the stadium was prominently featured in the 2017 film Girls Trip with Regina Hall, Queen Latifah and Tiffany Haddish.
8. Tampa, FL: Raymond James Stadium
Jared / Flickr
Traveling from New Orleans to Tampa takes a little over 17 hours by bus and about 50 hours by train, which is why we recommend you catch a flight and make that trip in under 1 hour and 30 minutes. What’s even better is that the Raymond James Stadium is located right outside the airport, making it super convenient to start your Tampa visit by checking off the venue you came to see.
Over the years, Tampa has hosted the big game a total of five times. Like New Orleans, though, the first two times – in 1984 and 1991 – the games were played at the Tampa Stadium that was demolished in 1999.
Raymond James Stadium has hosted the game three times, including most recently in 2021 when the host city’s very own Tampa Bay Buccaneers triumphed over the Kansas City Chiefs.
9. Miami, FL: Hard Rock Stadium
Santiago Bilinkis / Flickr
After a five-hour bus ride from Tampa you will find yourself in Miami, a city that has hosted the big game 11 times – the most out of any city in the US! The first five of those games (in 1968, 1969, 1971, 1976 and 1979) were played at the Miami Orange Bowl, a stadium that was demolished in 2008. Today, there’s a baseball stadium in its place, the LoanDepot Park, so if you insist on threading the same ground as some of the earlier football champions, you can check out the ballpark while you’re in town.
The rest of the championship games that took place in Miami (in 1989, 1995, 1999, 2007, 2010 and 2020) were played at Hard Rock Stadium. With public transit buses running every 30 minutes between the bus station and the stadium, it’s quite easy to get to the venue and keep your expenses to a minimum.
10. Jacksonville, FL: TIAA Bank Field
arctic_whirlwind / Flickr
Head north by taking a bus from Miami to Jacksonville to visit the next stadium on our list – TIAA Bank Field. It’s located in the very heart of Downtown Jacksonville, not too far from the bus station, which means you can easily use public transit to get to the venue.
This stadium has hosted the championship final only once, in 2005, when the Patriots defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 24-21.
11. Atlanta, GA: Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Atlanta Falcons / Wikipedia
With TIAA Bank Field checked off the list, it’s time to head north, so jump on a bus from Jacksonville to Atlanta where you will find Mercedes-Benz Stadium, host of the 2019 game. Like the Jacksonville venue, Mercedes-Benz Stadium is located conveniently in the city’s downtown area making it easily accessible from pretty much anywhere in town.
Atlanta has actually hosted the game three times. The first two occasions took place at the Georgia Dome which was, unfortunately, demolished in 2017. However, the Mercedes-Benz Stadium was erected pretty much in the same spot, so you will still be surrounded by the former venue’s emotional energy when you make your visit.
12. East Rutherford, NJ: MetLife Stadium
Izaac Crayton / Unsplash
After Atlanta, it’s time to make a big jump up north to the New York City metro area, or East Rutherford, New Jersey, to be exact. While you can certainly travel from Atlanta to New York by bus or by train, it would be quite the trip as it will require you to spend almost a day making your way up the east coast. That’s why we recommend you complete this leg of the journey by plane. For the most optimal combination of price, travel time and hassle, we also highly recommend you fly into Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey, located not too far from the stadium. From there, an Uber ride will take you about 15-20 min to get to the venue.
MetLife Stadium has hosted the big game only once, in 2014. That’s when the Seattle Seahawks defeated the Denver Broncos to win the championship for the first and only time in the team’s history.
13. Indianapolis, IN: Lucas Oil Stadium
Following your visit to MetLife Stadium, take another flight this time headed to Indianapolis to check out Lucas Oil Stadium. Conveniently located in the heart of the city, the venue is easily accessible by the 8 line of Indianapolis’ public transit system that leaves from the airport and drops you off just a block away from the stadium.
Like East Rutherford and Jacksonville, Indianapolis has hosted the game only once. That was in 2012 when the New York Giants beat the odds and defeated the New England Patriots 21-17.
14. Detroit, MI: Ford Field
Kevin Ward / Flickr
Hop on a bus from Indianapolis to Detroit to check out another one-time host, Ford Field. The stadium is located right in Downtown Detroit, so it’s easily accessible from pretty much anywhere in the city, and there’s plenty to do in and around the venue.
The one championship final game that took place here was in 2006 when the Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Seattle Seahawks to win their fifth title.
15. Minneapolis, MN: U.S. Bank Stadium
Ken Lund / Flickr
Take a bus from Detroit to Minneapolis to visit the last stadium on this journey. U.S. Bank Stadium is located right in Downtown Minneapolis, just a few blocks from the city’s main bus station.
While Minneapolis has hosted the big game twice – in 1992 and 2018 – U.S. Bank Stadium was the chosen venue only for the more recent occasion. In 1992, the game was played at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome which was demolished in 2014.
Hit the road with Wanderu!
There you have it, folks! Visiting every football stadium in the United States that has hosted the big championship game doesn’t have to be difficult or cost an arm and a leg. With Wanderu (and the Wanderu app), you can plan and book your trips with ease.
If you travel by bus or train, you can save a ton of money and complete a trip that any big football fan dreams of without making it tough on your wallet. Plan your trips ahead of time to get the cheapest price and make this your most memorable adventure to date!
How we did it
We used Wanderu’s unique routing technology to determine the most optimal route to visit every stadium in one trip based on the average lowest fares and shortest possible travel time for each route.
To ensure that this trip is more than just data science, the algorithm took into consideration only bus trips that can actually be booked on the Wanderu platform, as well as flights that have historically operated on a daily basis, verifying that this trip was possible at these prices over multiple consecutive days.
All of the bus prices featured on this itinerary represent the average lowest fare for a one-way trip for each of the applicable routes available on Wanderu over a 30-day period. Average flight fares were based on information available via KAYAK. Rideshare costs were collected using Uber’s price estimate tool. Commuter rail fares were based on the one-way fare for the featured routes during off-peak times.
You are welcome to use the information on this page, crediting Wanderu. If you do so, please link back to this page, so that football enthusiasts around the globe can check out all the available trips and find out how we came up with the itinerary.