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At the upcoming Super Bowl LV, greenbacks will no longer be an accepted method of payment.
While reducing the spread of coronavirus is a plus-the real reason (as is usually the case with the NFL) is to maximize profits.
For fans who arrive without plastic, "reverse ATMs" will be available which dispense Visa-branded prepaid cards.
The Economics: Much like how a casino converts dollars to Chips, it's easier to stomach a $16 hot dog purchase when you are not handing over cold-hard bills. Visa has found that fans spend an average of 25% more when using contactless payments.
A Game Of Numbers: Switching to an all-digital payment system will also allow the NFL to collect more data on purchasing behavior and create effective loyalty programs.
More than 20 NFL stadiums are scheduled to shift to a cash-free model in the near future.
The Big Day: The game is scheduled to be held at Tampa Bay's Raymond James Stadium on Feb. 7 with 20% capacity. But league executives have said they would be "open" to exploring increased capacity limits should circumstances permit. Knock on wood.