Stifled by the reality of a new marketplace created by the economic crisis, the New York Jets announced on Wednesday that they would be dropping season ticket prices for one club section in the new stadium next year.
The team also announced it would open up ticket sales to the public beginning Sunday — a move that might have come earlier than expected after some existing season ticket holders and those on the waiting list passed on current prices.
"We always knew we were going to do a public sale, so why not do it now?" Matt Higgins, the executive vice president of business operations for the Jets, told CNBC. "We also realized, after talking to many fans, that we were selling club seats at 2007 prices in a 2009 world."
The team's response was to target one section of the stadium, the Mezzanine Club, which will represent about 10 percent of the seats. The gameday ticket prices to those seats, which previously cost between $400 and $500, will now be dropped by as much as 50 percent, depending on location.
In reality, the total discount is not that deep as the Jets are not changing the personal seat license fee of $5,000 on those seats.
The team said those who already have purchased Mezzanine Club seats will be able to get their seats at the newly discounted rate.
The club says it has sold 70 percent of its non-premium seats to existing season ticket holders. There are, however, thousands of tickets left in the upper bowl, which does not require a PSL. Those gameday tickets are $95 each.
Higgins said this was all part of the plan in order to ensure the new stadium is sold out next year.
New York teams in new stadiums have already been discounting for the 2010 season. The Yankees dropped some premium seats by as much as 40 percent and the Mets lowered some ticket prices by more than 20 percent.