KANSAS CITY, Mo. (WIVB) – Bills fans wanting the team to host the AFC Championship game this weekend had their hopes dashed when the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. As a result, the Chiefs will host the Bills this coming Sunday. A Chiefs spokesperson confirmed to News 4 about 17,000 fans would be let into Arrowhead Stadium, about 22% capacity, for the game.
Nick Giammusso, the president and CEO of Buffalo-based VIP Tix, says there are tickets available.
“Roughly, there’s a little over 1,000 tickets that are floating around in the secondary markets,” he said.
On Monday afternoon, the cheapest seats available cost mid-to-high three figures. But Giammusso noted a seat on the 50 yard lost would cost about $2,250.
“I’m sure we’ll hear our fair share of boos,” said John Graziano, one of the Bills fans who will be in attendance. “But I have a good feeling that there is going to be a decent amount of Bills Mafia out there in the stands.”
Graziano plans to fly out Friday and return on Monday. He managed to save money on tickets, spending about $450, thanks to a friend with good foresight.
“One of my buddies bought them about three or four weeks ago, just hoping that the Bills would make it to this point versus the Chiefs,” Graziano said. “He actually bought them without asking me. He knew I would be in.”
Unlike games at Bills Stadium, fans sitting in the upper level, club level, or lower level of Arrowhead Stadium do not need to be tested for COVID-19 to get in. Tailgating is permitted in the parking lots as well, something that was prohibited at Bills games.
Travel could be tricky for Bills fans living in Western New York, however, because of the New York State travel advisory. The advisory requires travelers entering New York State to quarantine for 10 days. There is an exception for travelers who receive a COVID test within three days of their departure for New York. Those individuals would be required to quarantine for three days, and then be tested again for the coronavirus on the fourth day.
“New Yorkers are responsible for following the requirements of the travel advisory which has been in place since June,” said New York State Department of Health spokesperson Erin Silk.
The travel advisory was updated in October to include the test-out provision. Regardless, travel experts anticipate the travel advisory may prevent some Bills fans from attending the game in person.
“For a trip out that most Buffalo fans would be thrilled to do and have been waiting for so long to do, that quarantine may or may not hold them back depending on what they’re able to do with their job,” said Renee Pilley, a travel consultant with AAA.
It won’t be an issue for Graziano.
“I’m working from home full-time, so I will be easily able to quarantine,” he said.
“I feel like there definitely has to be some risk with COVID and everything going on,” the North Tonawanda resident added. “But I’ve been a Bills fan for 30 years now and I don’t remember the first five years. So it’s been forever since I’ve seen them in the playoffs. I feel like it’s worth the risk and it’s going to be a once in a lifetime experience seeing the Bills potentially go on and play in the Super Bowl.”
Chris Horvatits is an award-winning reporter who joined the News 4 team in December 2017. See more of his work here.