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Personal Finance Reports

The Cost of Hosting a Super Bowl Party in 2018

Questions are abound as we prepare for Super Bowl LII this Sunday. 

If there is a lesson to be learned from the previous 51 Super Bowls, it is that the game itself is unpredictable. Despite the New England Patriots being one of the heaviest favorites in the game’s history, no one would be surprised if the Philadelphia Eagles pulled it out. ​

​The one guarantee when it comes to Super Bowl LII is that Americans will be tuning in. Last year’s game drew 111.9 million viewers – more than one-third of the U.S. population. 

The Super Bowl has essentially turned into an American holiday, as families and friends gather together to watch the big game and the equally-entertaining commercials that come with it. 

Because of the viewership demand, Super Bowl watch parties have become common and often very expensive. The host of the party must budget for ample food, drinks, decorations, fan gear, among other things. 

But, exactly how much will one of these Super Bowl watch parties run the host in 2018?

LendEDU polled 1,000 Americans that will be hosting a Super Bowl LII watch party to find out how much money these folks will be dolling out to entertain guests during the big game. 

A Super Bowl LII Watch Party Will Cost the Host $207.16

The average American hosting a Super Bowl watch party this Sunday should be prepared to spend about $207.16, the average Super Bowl watch party expenditure according to LendEDU. The most costly contributor to this total expense pertained to food and non-alcoholic beverages, which accounted for $72.10 of the total cost.

Following the aforementioned expense category was the cost of alcoholic beverages, something that the average Super Bowl watch party host will spend $57.92 on. The next most expensive Super Bowl party cost will be credited to miscellaneous expenses, which add up to $28.84.

Following miscellaneous expenses, decorations will cost the average host $27.60. Finally, fan gear expenses, like jerseys and rally towels, will run the gracious Super Bowl host $20.70.

Check out the graphic below to see how the different expenses were broken down according to their respective proportions of the total cost. 

When taking a look at these expenditure statistics for a Super Bowl LII watch party, it is important to remember that these statistics are averages. Some Americans may be going all out for the big game by renting a catering company, a professional bartender, and jerseys for each invitee. Other hosts could just be having a small group of friends over and ordering some pizza, wings, and beer. 

Either way, it is evident that when it comes to hosting a Super Bowl watch party, the average American will short-change no expense to ensure his or her guests are fed, quenched, and sufficiently entertained. These expenditure numbers also demonstrate how the Super Bowl can be a day of serious revenue for restaurants, liquor stores, general stores, and any other businesses looking to get in on the big game profits. 

A Few Questions Pertaining to Super Bowl Sunday…A Potential National Holiday?

1. When watching the Super Bowl, will you be more interested in the commercials or the game itself?

a. 35.00% of respondents answered “the commercials”

b. 65.00% of respondents answered “the game”

2. Will you be going to work on Monday after the Super Bowl?

a. 61.10% of respondents answered “yes”

b. 38.90% of respondents answered “no”

3. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q2) What will your productivity level be like at work on Monday after the Super Bowl (0.00% being the least productive)?

a. 5.89% of respondents answered “somewhere between 0.00% and 19.00%”

b. 13.09% of respondents answered “somewhere between 20.00% and 39.00%”

c. 16.53% of respondents answered “somewhere between 40.00% and 59.00%”

d. 20.13% of respondents answered “somewhere between 60.00% and 79.00%”

e. 44.35% of respondents answered “somewhere between 80.00% and 100.00%”

4. Should the Monday after the Super Bowl be declared a national holiday?

a. 52.40% of respondents answered “yes”

b. 47.60% of respondents answered “no”

Commercials are a huge draw for the Super Bowl and one of the big game’s components that attracts the casual fan. Many companies save their best and newest advertising for Super Bowl Sunday and pay ghastly sums of money to get airtime during the most desired time slots, such as the first timeout. 

When broken down by gender, 39.67 percent of our female respondents will be more focused on the commercials, compared to 28.00 percent of male respondents that held the same sentiment. 

Considering the Super Bowl is one of the last major television events that commands a live viewing audience, shelling out more than ten million for a 30 second commercial is certainly not the worst way to burn through that advertising budget; especially when more than one-third of the Super Bowl’s television audience will be paying closer attention to the commercials. 

One of the ongoing, more humorous debates regarding the big game is whether or not that following Monday should be national holiday that calls for no school and no work. Perhaps this debate is not as comical as once thought, because 52.40 percent of Americans believe Super Bowl Monday should indeed be declared a national holiday. 

Even if that Monday is not a national holiday now and likely never will be, a considerable proportion of Americans are going to treat it like one. 38.90 percent of our respondents have no intentions to head to the office on the Monday after the Super Bowl. 

For those that are being model employees and going to work on Monday after the Super Bowl, their bosses should be expecting limited productivity, most likely from an overload of sodium and libations. 44.35 percent of respondents answered that their productivity level at work will be between 80 percent and 100 percent. Meanwhile, the remainder of the poll participants that will be in the office anticipate a work productivity level of 79 percent or less. 

Super Bowl Sunday may certainly be big business, but Super Bowl Monday is anything but.  


All data that was featured in this report came from an online poll commissioned by LendEDU and conducted online by polling company Pollfish. In total, 1,000 adult Americans that stated they will be hosting a Super Bowl watch party on Sunday were surveyed. Respondents were screened to ensure they were hosting a Super Bowl watch party this Sunday via screener question with only one permissible answer choice. This poll was conducted over a four day span, starting on Tuesday, January 23rd and ending on Friday, January 26th. All respondents were asked to answer each question truthfully and to the best of their ability. 

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