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NEW YORK (AP) - Super Bowl fans can prepare to pay double for the best seats.

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The NFL expects the most expensive tickets for its championship game will be about $2,600 each for 9,000 premium seats for the Feb. 2 game at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.

That's more than twice the $1,250 cost for similar tickets at last season's Super Bowl in New Orleans.

``We are looking to close the gap between the face value of the ticket and its true value as reflected on the secondary market,'' NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said Tuesday. ``The uniqueness of the Super Bowl in the New York/New Jersey is also driving unprecedented demand and buzz.''

The next tier of seats is expected to go for $1,500 compared to $950 in New Orleans. About 40 percent of general admission seats will be under $1,000, McCarthy said.

The capacity of MetLife Stadium is 82,000, but it will be trimmed by about 5,000 seats to make room for media, cameras and security. The priciest seats will have access to indoor restaurants, where fans can warm up during the outdoor game.

The lowest-priced ticket fell from $650 last year to $500. Some 30,000 fans entered a lottery that closed in June, and 1,000 winners - double from 500 - will be notified this fall.

In an attempt to ensure those fans don't resell tickets above face value, the NFL for the first time will require ticket holders to go to a gate to pick up those tickets as they enter the stadium. They won't be allowed to return to the parking lot, McCarthy said.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the increase in ticket prices.

AP NEWS
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The Associated Press
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