Travel Agents: Traveling to Final Four with the Iowa Hawkeyes likely cost over $1,000

For bowl games, the Athletics Department says it normally gets around 5,000 to 7,000 tickets. But, for the women's final the NCAA gave the Univ. of Iowa 500.
Published: Mar. 27, 2023 at 8:37 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The University of Iowa said it plans to open Carver-Hawkeye Arena for a watch party when the Iowa Women’s Basketball Team plays in the Final Four on Friday, according to an announcement from the school. However, those who want to see the game in person will likely spend more than $1,000 for the experience.

It’s the team’s first Final Four appearance since 1993 and the first time under Head Coach Lisa Bluder. The Hawkeyes will play the winner of Monday night’s game between South Carolina and Maryland.

According to Google flights, plane tickets from Des Moines to Dallas cost around $700. Those flight prices are even higher if you fly out of the Eastern Iowa Airport in Cedar Rapids. Hotels, according to Google hotels, could cost around $100 a night without fees. The two cheapest tickets, TV9 found, on StubHub this afternoon cost around $778.

The price for flights and tickets increased by $100 since TV9 checked in the morning. Angie Harter, who is a travel agent for Travel Headquarters in Dubuque, said those prices will likely increase as the game gets closer.

“As prices go up, it’s just a supply and demand,” she said. “So as space fills up the prices get more expensive and it’s just a matter of you snooze you lose.”

Some travel agencies we spoke with said they’re not offering full travel packages due to the lack of tickets received from the University of Iowa. However, Harter said people can make those arrangements separately.

Steve Roe, who is a spokesperson for the Athletic Department, said tickets for many fans are going to be an issue. He said the Iowa Athletics Department says it normally gets around 5,000 to 7,000 tickets for bowl games compared to the NCAA giving the school 500 tickets for the Women’s Final Four. Those tickets, Roe said, would be used for players’ families.

“This allocation is utilized to provide tickets for the families/guests of the student-athletes (NCAA allows six tickets per player), athletics department, and a very limited number of fans,” he said. “Unfortunately, we were unable to secure additional tickets that would of helped us meet the significant demand from our fans.”

One travel agent said she received around 50 calls for travel to the game, but that was the minority of travel agents TV9 spoke with on the phone.