I’ve been an avid American soccer fan for many years. A subscriber to NFL Gamepass, I watch almost every game on television. When the Raiders franchise was transferred from Oakland to Las Vegas, one of my favorite cities in the world, I knew I’d be going to see a US soccer game one day.
This was done in October 2022 during an NFL match: Las Vegas Raiders – Houston Texans.
Find out in my article what it’s like to attend an NFL game in Vegas, as well as tips on how to make your experience unique.
How to book your Raiders ticket
Tickets for NFL games are bought and sold via Ticketmasters.com. The “.com” is important. If you go to the international versions, tickets are not available.
The same problem is possible with the application. In other countries than the United States, you can’t download the Ticketmaster.com application onto your phone. I even encountered this problem once in the United States.
The solution is to go to your Ticketmaster.com account via a web browser and save your ticket on Google Wallet. When you enter the stadium, present your ticket with Google Wallet on your smartphone.
Where to sit in the Raiders’ stadium?
In an NFL stadium, prices evolve in the same way as in any other sports arena. Bottom and middle seats are the most expensive, while top and back seats are the cheapest.
Nevertheless, to get the most out of an American soccer match, it’s important to get a good view of the action and tactics by being in the center of the field as much as possible.
The best value for money at Allegiant Stadium is the seats in the 3XX blocks near midfield.
Almost in the middle, in a high ring, we paid $300/place.
How do I get to Allegiant Stadium?
Allegiant Stadium is very close to the Strip, Las Vegas’s main street. More precisely, it’s on the south side of town, behind the Mandalay Bay Hotel.
As tourists staying in Las Vegas, avoid taking your own car whenever possible. You’ll pay dearly for parking and waste an inordinate amount of time in traffic.
With Amélie, we took an Uber on the outward journey. For a trip from the Flamingo Hotel to the stadium, we paid $40. Part of the parking lot is reserved for rideshare services (Uber, Lyft). Your driver will drop you off at the foot of the stadium.
After the Raiders game, we walked home. It was a 5 km walk, but the weather was nice, not too hot and the ride was pleasant. For the first two kilometers we were among groups of people leaving the stadium, and with Las Vegas having won, everyone was happy.
Buses or the Mandalay Bay Tram can also be used to get to the Raiders stadium.
Which hotel should I stay in to attend a match at Allegiant Stadium?
Since it’s easy to get to the stadium, all Las Vegas hotels are available.
If you want to be as close as possible to Allegiant Stadium, hotels such as the Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Excalibur, MGM Grand and Aria are the best choice. Cheaper hotels not on the Strip are also available.
How long before the match can I get to Allegiant Stadium?
Entry to American sports venues is fluid. Unlike in France, you won’t get stuck for an hour because the few stewards can’t handle the influx.
If you just want to watch the game, arrive 30 minutes before the match. You’ll have time to get through security, find your seat and be there for the pregame. This part is always fun, with the announcer singing and the American anthem playing.
Amélie and I wanted to experience an NFL game as much as possible. We came two hours before the game to enjoy the atmosphere around the stadium, watch the warm-ups and have a quiet meal in the grandstand.
What’s on outside the stadium before the Raiders match?
Before each match, you have a fan zone that opens 3h30 before the match and closes just before kick-off. This area is open to everyone. So, even without a match ticket, you can spend time around the stadium.
Currently, this zone is sponsored by Modelo and is called “Modelo Tailgate Zone.” You’ll find
- Numerous food trucks and bars sell food and drink.
- A few games such as ball throwing are organized.
- Interactive kiosks let you take photos in the Raiders’ colors.
- A boutique stand sells Raiders’ products.
- Some partners offer goodies.
- For games on Sundays, a giant screen shows matches played on the East Coast. As there’s a 3-hour time difference between New York and Las Vegas, not all games are played at the same time.
What’s on in the stadium before and during the Raiders match?
The show continues once you enter the stadium. The warm-up period lasts a long time. When the players aren’t on the field, the cheerleaders take over.
Before our Raiders – Texans match, we were treated to a Kelly Clarkson concert. She was to our right, on a stage set up at the top of a grandstand at the back of the field.
There’s plenty of other entertainment, including music by the Raiders’ official band, the arrival of the American flag on the pitch and, of course, the national anthem. For our match, it was another well-known singer at the microphone: the artist JoJo.
How easy is it to eat at an NFL game in Las Vegas?
What a question! You’re in the USA: eating isn’t a need, it’s an activity…
In the stadium’s corridors, you’ll find a wide range of food and beverage outlets. Nachos, hot dogs, French fries, pizza… You’re spoiled for choice.
Since the game lasted from 1 to 4:30 p.m. and we hadn’t eaten, we bought hot dogs. The price was $7 for a hot dog.
The drinks were even better, as we paid $2 or $3 (my memory fails me) for soda… unlimited! You have your glass and refill it at the fountains whenever you like. I had to drink four large glasses during the game for this ridiculous price.
There’s plenty of food on offer, and prices are very low during NFL games.
What’s the atmosphere like in the Raiders stadium?
In Europe, it’s often said that Americans are consumers of sport rather than fans. We would have the real passion. You only have to go to the other side of the Atlantic to realize that this is still a haughty and false position.
Some American soccer fans are exceptional and never stop cheering for their team.
However, this is not the case in Las Vegas. This very touristy city often sees a good part of its stadium mobbed by opposing fans.
The atmosphere was good, but not fantastic. Yet the potential is enormous. The stadium has a roof, and every time the fans raise their voices, the echo amplifies them.
Can you enjoy an NFL game without knowing anything about US soccer?
Amélie didn’t know any American soccer rules a month before the game. I explained the most important ones to her, and even though she didn’t always understand the “flags” thrown by the referee, she managed to follow the game. A little confession on her part: she much preferred this match to our outings to see European soccer in Paris.
So if you’re a complete novice, just read the basic rules and that’ll do. The show makes the experience enjoyable even without any knowledge of the game.
Should we leave the stadium before the end of the match to avoid the crowds?
If you don’t want to lose 30 minutes after the end of the match because of traffic jams, I advise you to leave a few minutes before. This is even truer if you have your own car. Of course, do this if there’s no suspense. With a score of 38-20 with two minutes to go, almost a quarter of the spectators did.
Amélie and I wanted to take our time and go to the team store, The Raider Image, after the match. So we went out among the main crowd at the final whistle.
The organization is well done. There’s only one possible route to take you safely to the Strip. Traffic is cut off on the bridge you cross.
If you want to take an Uber again, my advice is to walk to one or two hotels further away than the Mandalay Bay. This brings the fare down and, more importantly, saves you waiting in a long line of Uber customers.
How safe is the Allegiant Stadium?
At sporting events, there are no fights between fans as there are in European soccer. In fact, many opposing fans come to the stadium with their shirts on their backs, with no fear whatsoever.
Close to the stadium, a few police and security personnel are present. That’s more than enough. There are no CRS or, as I’ve seen in France after terrorist attacks, military personnel with assault rifles… You’re more worried about other places in Las Vegas, especially those frequented by drug addicts.
When you enter the stadium, you pass through a security gate. You’re not allowed to carry an oversized backpack or handbag, unless it’s a completely transparent pouch.
I think I’ve answered the main questions people ask before attending an NFL game in Las Vegas. If you get the chance, go for it. In a modern, comfortable stadium, you’ll be treated to an American-style show.