The Super Bowl has changed over the past decade. Not long ago, getting a ticket to the most hyped sporting event of the year was very difficult for the general public as tickets were ruled by underground ticket brokers and shady executives. Thankfully, all of that has changed as technology has brought Super Bowl tickets to the masses. Now anyone who wants to go to Super Bowl can if they follow a few simple rules.

1) If It Is Too Good To Be True ... It Is
Every year the box office lines are full of people who got a "screaming good deal” by buying tickets in cash off of somebody they met on the street through various online websites, like Craiglist. If the going rate on StubHub or Ticketmaster's TicketExchange is $2,000 per ticket and you are being offered tickets for $1,000 each it is most likely fraud.

2) You Get What You Pay For
Trying to save money buying tickets from a company you've never heard of is not worth the risk. A simple two minutes of Google searches and research will save plenty of heartache. The larger firms you can trust will take losses to assure they meet their obligations to you as a customer. Stick with Ticketmaster, StubHub, Quint Events and the Host Committee.

3) Steer Clear Of Speculation
Just like in the equity markets, people look for an advantage. Sellers will sell a ticket they don't have (yet) but plan to buy when the market drops but still sell at a high margin. How can you sniff out speculation? If they don’t have an exact location or if they ask you to pick up tickets a day or two before the game, steer clear.

4) Don't try to beat the market
These sellers make tens of millions on the Super Bowl. They are the pros spending years understanding it and have experience while you, the consumer, does not. You won’t beat them. The only sure fire way to "time" the market is not to buy your tickets the day after the teams are set. Give the market a few days to settle down. It's not going to sell out.

For this year's Super Bowl on Feb. 2 at the Meadowlands in New Jersey, there is brisk demand for tickets, despite the strong possibility of frigid weather. According to reports by WCBS Radio and the New York Post, the cheapest face-value ticket of $500 could go for prices around $3,000. Meanwhile, the lower-bowl seats that carry a $2,600 face value are expected to go for close to $4,000 on average. (A $2,600 ticket also grants access to an indoor restaurant.)

At the moment on the secondary market, tickets are ranging from $2,500 to $10,000. But if the sales of luxury suites are any indication, those prices could be dropping the next few weeks. Consider: Companies were buying suites from brokers and the host committee for $400K to $800K just three months ago. Those same locations are now on the market for $330K to $550K -- and falling.

-- Tony Knopp is co-founder and CEO of Spotlight Ticket Management, the leader in corporate ticket management solutions. Email Tony or follow him on Twitter @SpotlightTMS.

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