|Charlotte FC ticket prices are MLS’s highest with PSL engaged|
|Only league franchise with license initiative|
|Published Monday, February 22, 2021 5:20 pm|
|MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER|
|Charlotte FC’s ticket price structure, which includes the first public seat license program in Major League Soccer, make it the most expensive in the league.|
The club is the first to bring a personal seat license model to Major League Soccer, unveiled ticket pricing on Feb. 19, ahead of general seating that goes on sale March 15. Seat selection is available for the supporters’ section, with an option to place a deposit for premium or general seating, which are $100 and $75 respectively.
The club’s website explains the options as supporters seating located behind the East goal; general seating (100 and 200 levels, excluding the supporters’ section) and premium seating on the 300 level sidelines with indoor access. The club lists premium seating as in progress.
“The PSLs [fans] are used to on the NFL side, but with MLS is unique,” club president Nick Kelly told The Post earlier this month. “We are the first team to produce PSLs in the MLS, and the biggest reason we have done it is for one, a sense of ownership. If you look at it from a price standpoint, it’s not an extremely daunting number, but it also allows us to work to reinvest in the stadium, to make it more of a soccer-specific venue. We’re looking at upgrades to a tunnel club. We’re looking at a supporters’ gate, a supporters’ section and even the costs that are associated with creating a supporters’ and a soccer environment. We want to make sure we are doing the best version of that and with that comes the PSL strategy we have in place.”
Kelly said the franchise’s ticket and sales staff were focusing on a couple hundred people per day to convert ticket deposits into seats, which was named his top priority when he took the job in December. He officially began on Feb. 1.
General seating PSLs range from $350-$900 per seat and both premium options are $550 per seat. A general season ticket is $630-$1,980, with premium options at $2,250 and $1,620. Tickets per match for premium are $90 or $125 per match. Tickets range from $35-$110 per match for general seating. The cheapest general seating is located in the West End 200 level, and the most expensive is midfield 1 rows 1-5. Supporters’ section tickets are listed at $486 for the season ticket and $27 per match.
Rival Atlanta United’s season membership price structure ranges from $468-$4,230 for founding members to $558-$4,590. Price points reflect the supporters section and SunTrust Club. They also offer three additional on-field options, which require contacting the club. Atlanta requires a non-refundable $50 deposit to join their season ticket wait list.
Charlotte will enter the league with the highest pricing structure. The cost is a concern for some, while others have already made their purchases. Former Charlotte City Council member Justin Harlow purchased four seats in the fourth row of section 319. Others like Cody Arnold asked for a deposit refund, which he said the club told him would take up to three weeks. He shared on Twitter that “Soccer in Charlotte was supposed to be inclusive, not exclusive. Pricing out what would be loyal fans is inexcusable. Can’t see many willing to pay this (during a pandemic!) for what they’d get.”
Arnold said he did not feel pressured by the sales associate he spoke with to pick a seat that he did not want and offered the supporters’ section as an alternative. Arnold said he has experienced a supporters section, which typically includes 90 minutes of standing and chanting, but wanted to experience something different.
“I’m hoping Charlotte FC takes notice and fans’ concerns are heard,” he tweeted. “I want the team to succeed and I want to support them, but they need to be more focused on inclusion rather than exclusion, and that all starts with reasonable ticket prices.”
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