The 50 locations more convenient to Super Bowl 50 than San Francisco

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You didn’t actually stay in San Francisco this week in anticipation of taking fewer than five hours or spending less than $750 to get to the game Sunday, did you? DID YOU????

By Andrew J. Pridgen

Nobody wants anything to do with Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco, least of all San Francisco. Here’s why: The Yorks took Goldman Sachs money and public funds to erect a glass menagerie reflection of their ownership’s inequity in the heart of America’s wealthiest Build-a-Bear Workshop district. And now they’re crawling back under a cloak of corporate celebration to the city they shirked and having that same city pick up the tab. Fuckers. Even Uber drivers are pissed (well, more pissed than usual).

It’s the equivalent of your ex asking if she and her boyfriend can vacation in your flat while you go to rehab.

Fuck that noise.

But there’s a bigger problem brewing this weekend. San Francisco, as it has been noted here and here and especially here is not only using police brutality and suppression techniques to control the proles, but it’s about as awkward a spot insofar as getting to Santa Clara as being outed to your grandma at the Thanksgiving table by your little cousin.

Not to mention, San Francisco—already the most expensive metro in America—is jacking up everything with Super Bowl prices: that’s lodging to food to one-time-wear Alcatraz sweatshirts to Uber surge rates.

In other words, your game-day SF-Santa Clara commute should come with a vegetarian meal option and the average tab for a Super Bowl reveler will be upwards of $2,500/day—and that’s before you throw down $3k for upper corner nosebleeds. Plus, you know, $20 per flat beer that’s keg-in-field warm at the concessions. So maybe the fiscally responsible thing to do is to pre-party elsewhere then sneak in on coach for the day-of.

So, if all that …plus homeless protests, defacing all signage and THIS!!! still doesn’t have you convinced that SF ain’t the place to be on Super Bowl week—here are 50 spots in the US that are more cost-effective, more convenient, and, frankly, more interesting than San Francisco to stage your pre- and post-Super Bowl festivities.

yosemiteIV1) Yosemite

How to get to Santa Clara: Car

How long will it take: 3.2 hours

How much will it cost? $28 in gas. $7.38 for a #24 (turkey and avo) and some Funyons at the Gilroy Togo’s.

Comments: I’m not quite sure why they renamed the Ahwahnee the The Majestic Yosemite Hotel (maybe someone’s got a little too big a crush on Bill Nighy in the The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel series) but the fact remains Bridal Falls is raging right now and you can be national park to national disaster in less time than it’ll take for a 16-person van to get through the stop lights on 19th.

2) Denver

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 2.75 hours

How much will it cost: $210 r/t (United)

Comments: If you’re a Broncos’ fan what better way to do Super Bowl Sunday than to ditch your neighbor’s party and the lines at the Highland’s Ranch King Soopers and go straight to the source? Just don’t expect Manning to be Elway to fly into the end zone without shattering like a Christmas ornament and you’ll be just fine.

3) Detroit

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 6 hours

How much will it cost: $419 r/t (United)

Comments: Leaving the Motor City for an afternoon will make you appreciate the fact that you paid $30 grand for this historic (although needs, um, updating) five-bed 1925 Tudor in the LaSalle Gardens hood—think less than five miles from Tiger Stadium. Yeah, that’s fewer than first and last plus security deposit for a 600-square-foot studio in SOMA.

alibiI4) Lake Tahoe/Reno

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1 hour five minutes

How much will it cost: $161 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: Reno is the world’s easiest airport to get in/out of and you literally park across the street from your gate. You can also leave the car idling in short term to keep the engine warm and the interior a comfy 78.

5) Monterey/Carmel

How to get to Santa Clara: Car

How long will it take: 1 hour

How much will it cost: $9 gas

Comments: Anybody coming from south to north will be waving at stand-still traffic on the way up. If you pass the It’s-It factory on the 101, you’ve gone too far. Be sure to load up at Friar Tuck’s or Little Swiss Cafe for breakfast; leave in the fourth to be back at Brophy’s in time for a post-game Dale’s Pale and a couple tall tales with the loopers from Pebble.

sloI6) San Luis Obispo

How to get to Santa Clara: Amtrak

How long will it take: 3.5 hours

How much will it cost: $53 r/t gas

Comments: The train stop is 100 feet from the stadium entrance. This is a thing where you could run a 10k, wine taste in Edna Valley and grab a tri-tip taco from Firestone Grill Sunday morning, hop on the 11 a.m. coastal express and still be at the stadium in time to tailgate for 90 minutes.

7) Charlotte

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 7 hours 5 minutes

How much will it cost: $434 r/t (United, American and Delta

Comments: The red-eye leaves around 11 p.m. so you may need to cut out in the third quarter to be home by your Monday commute. Cam will have at least a 30-spot up on Denver by then, no?

8) Madison

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 6 hours 25 minutes

How much will it cost: $344 r/t (Delta)

Comments: Face it, the Malt House and Players are going to be packed and since the it’s going to be a balmy 23 on Sunday might as well hop on that Delta flight and enjoy a Straight Outta Compton viewing as you count the number of ways you’re glad you chose a snowy walkway and a comp sci tenure track over a 23-year-old brocoder boss at Enerspace who speaks in adjectives only.

9) Paris

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 11.5 hours

How much will it cost: $1,183 r/t (American, United)

Comments: DeGaulle to SJ Intl. isn’t exactly what most of you are planning, but if you leave Saturday evening there’s a 10:45 a.m. that gets you there at 3:47 p.m. BAM mutherfuckas. That’s LESS time than it’ll take you to get a cab Sunday morning in The City.

10) Salt Lake City

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1.5 hours

How much will it cost: $175 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: SLC or SJ to SFO runs about 80x/day so you can get well under $200 if you’re looking. However, this one worked well for our fare. It also leaves at noon, gets you to the stadium a couple hours early for tailgating and home before midnight.

vegasIII11) Las Vegas

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1.25 hours

How much will it cost: $93 r/t (Delta)

Comments: If you’re already in Vegas, you might want to stay. Then again, NOBODY is going to be at McCarran Sunday between noon and 2 a.m. so it’s like you’ve got the airport to yourself.

12) Cabo San Lucas

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 3 hours 10 minutes

How much will it cost: $219 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: SLC or SJ to SFO runs about 80x/day so you can get well under $200 if you’re looking. However, this one worked well for our fare. It also leaves at noon, gets you to the stadium a couple hours early for tailgating and home before midnight.

13) Scottsdale

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1 hour 55 min.

How much will it cost: $216 r/t (American)

Comments: Here we have the tale of two tailgaters. One can sip $4 pitchers and show up to Sky Harbor intl. 20 mins. early for the 1:40 flight, be at the stadium for kick-off and leave after Metallica Cold Play at halftime then back to the Coach House in time for the post-game wrap.

14) Bakersfield

How to get to Santa Clara: Car/Amtrak

How long will it take: 5 hours/7 hours respectively

How much will it cost: $80 r/t

Comments: This is an 1-5 throwdown where you can leave at 11 a.m. and still be there mid-first quarter and not have to deal with traffic on the way in. The 8 a.m. train also gets you at the gate 20 minutes after kickoff when ticket prices will be down from five to three digits. If you drive,  sure to pack an empty Igloo to hit Harris Ranch for some marbly goodness on your way back to the town where life is “As it should be.”

laI15) Los Angeles

How to get to Santa Clara: Car

How long will it take: 5.5 hours

How much will it cost: $90 r/t (gas)

Comments: I can’t imagine anything better than going out in LA Friday and Saturday night, waking up half hungover Sunday taking down a full stack and a scramble at Nick’s Cafe and pointing North on the 5 or 101. You may be sleeping one off on the way back somewhere Los Banosish or just play the “Can I stay awake till the next In-n-Out” game.

16) Sacramento

How to get to Santa Clara: Amtrak/Plane

How long will it take: 3 hours/45 min (SFO only)

How much will it cost: $71 r/t (train) $220 r/t (JetBlue)

Comments: Unfortunately, this is coming from points north so not gonna recco a car ride (though you could snake through the East Bay on the 680 around Suisun and miss most of the SF 101/280 clusterfuck. Flying might be the call here. You can literally take off at 2:20 p.m. and be home in time for a late dinner at Heat Shabu Baru.

17) Maui

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 5 hours

How much will it cost: $358 r/t (Hawaiian)

Comments: You’re giving up two hours OGG to San Jose but you’re getting it on the back end, which means even if you have to leave at 8 a.m. you’re on the 9 p.m. back which gets you in at midnight where the Lava Flows will still be flowing at the Sugarcane.

18) Manhattan

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 6.5 hours

How much will it cost: $257 r/t (JetBlue)

Comments: Hit Katz’s for a couple salami en route to LaGuardia, hop on the 12:20 and be at the stadium to spread some East Coast love before kickoff. You’ll be relegated to that regular red eye with an 11:55 flight back but that puts you in your chair well in time for opening bell.

pcskiIV19) Park City

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 2 hours

How much will it cost: $175 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: Pretty much the same as Salt Lake with a half-hour commute to the airport. The best is with a couple bluebird days lined up, you can ski a half-day in the a.m., leave at noon, gain an hour to the West Coast and still be on the 10 p.m. for turns on Monday.

20) Portland

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1 hour 37 min.

How much will it cost: $137 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: Here’s one to drop to all the flannel and beanie and sleeve tatted chromies over your third bloody at brunch, “I’m going to the fucking Super Bowl.” When they shrug because they don’t care because half their bros at Nike are already there and they’re going to be eating artisanal urban insect lollipops that afternoon, you can tell them to fuck off and you’re going anyway.

21) Seattle

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 2 hours

How much will it cost: $147 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: So your team’s not in the Super Bowl this year, all the more reason to go and root for another QB to throw a pick from inside his own five to end the game. If you’re pulling for Carolina especially, any Seahawk mojo in the stands is Kryptonite for Manning.

22) Austin

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 5 hours 10 min

How much will it cost: $314 (American/Delta)

Comments: Ditching out on the prospect of Super Bowl on 4th street to go to a place where your post-game meal choices are Red Robin or PF Changs (Cheesecake Factory will be too crowded) is all kinds of awful. At least halftime will be during the day which puts you back on Texas soil just after sundown.

eugeneI23) Eugene

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1.5 hours

How much will it cost: $262 r/t (Delta)

Comments: Oregon’s recruiting class was among the most disappointing in a decade so maybe it’s time to get out of town for an afternoon and remind yourself what actual football looks like.

24) San Diego

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 2 hours 55 min.

How much will it cost: $168 (r/t American)

Comments: If you live in SD you know you’re almost fresh out of football teams. First shirt bootlegger to approach you, there’s your new squad.

25) Boise

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 2 hours

How much will it cost: $172 r/t (Alaska)

Comments: Eight hours round trip including the game when it’s going to be a high of 75 and sunny in Santa Clara? You already got the Broncos gear so why not?

26) Guadalajara

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 4 hours

How much will it cost: $219 r/t (Alaska, Volaris)

Comments: It’ll take you less time to get from Guadalajara than the Mission to Santa Clara. Don’t drink the water at Levi’s Stadium though.

27) Anaheim

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 1 hour 10 min.

How much will it cost: $240 r/t (Southwest)

Comments: Or point it up the 5 in our car (sort of like LA). Regardless of who wins, you can say you’re going to Disneyland…and will be there by fireworks Sunday night.

santacruzI28) Santa Cruz

How to get to Santa Clara: Bus

How long will it take: 1 hour

How much will it cost: $10.25 r/t

Comments: Now we’re talking, a bus to the stadium coming from the south. Though it’s been 12-15’ at Steamers this week so might be just as worth it to stay home and paddle out.

29) Palo Alto

How to get to Santa Clara: Bike

How long will it take: 1 hour

How much will it cost: Free

Comments: Take West Evelyn all the way to the stadium, bike lane pretty much the duration. It’s about a 14-mile ride and I’m sure the bike rack at the main concourse will be empty. A savvy pop-up entrepreneur would spend the next 24 hours getting together about 50 bikes/helmets and leading a tour from The Epiphany Hotel to the stadium for $100/head. Post-ride drinks not included.

30) Big Sur

How to get to Santa Clara: Hitchhike

How long will it take: 2 hours

How much will it cost: Some of your weed/’shrooms

Comments: Time to go poach/camp somewhere near Pfeiffer State Park Friday and Saturday and find yourself a hot spring and some friends. Clearly someone will think that jumping back into civilization for an afternoon exposed to the worst of all mankind (including all the Yum brands marketing heads) would be what Kesey and his Pranksters would do today.

pinnaclesI31) Pinnacles National Park

How to get to Santa Clara: Car

How long will it take: 1.5 hours

How much will it cost: $20 in gas; $5 in Jetboil, BYO sleeping bag.

Comments: What’s better than folding up your pack, enjoying half a Cool Mint Chocolate Clif bar and being from nature to the Great America parking lot in under two hours? Also, you get to pass through Soledad …where, you know, it’s happening.

32) Mammoth Lakes

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 6 hours

How much will it cost: $410 r/t (United)

Comments: OK, we admit, it’s probably easier to get from Paris to Santa Clara and the drive time is about the same as the flight time. Even so, you’re spending a lot more time on the backside of the Sierra and a lot less time idling in Brisbane.

33) Walnut Creek

How to get to Santa Clara: Uber (if they’re not striking)

How long will it take: 54 min.

How much will it cost: $120 r/t

Comments: Even if you made the mistake of staying in SF, we’ll do you a solid on game day. Get up, BART over to Walnut Creek, order up an Uber and have them take the 680 and drop you at the stadium. Same in reverse after the game. You’ll save yourself about 7 hours and $500. Plus, they have cheesy bars and a sports basement there too, so it’s pretty much the same as staying in the Marina.

34) Whistler

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 3 hours 55 min.

How much will it cost: $210 r/t (Delta)

Comments: NOBODY is going to be coming from Canada. In fact, they might think you’re trying to defect from the US on the turnaround. Best stay home and make some turns this weekend.

35) Munich

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 16 hours

How much will it cost: $735 r/t (Delta)

Comments: Definitely going to have to set out Saturday evening for Sunday morning and Sunday night gets you back midday Monday. And with Löwenbräukeller right there, it’s a tough sell. Then again, it is Gaga singing the National Anthem.

sbbeachI36) Santa Barbara

How to get to Santa Clara: Amtrak

How long will it take: 5.5 hours

How much will it cost: $73

Comments: Kind of another no-brainer here. Couple quick a.m. beers on State Street and you’re placing all kinds of prop bets on the train’s free wi-fi and enjoying the coastal views from the bar car. Hell, the game may be the day’s low-light.

37) Oakland

How to get to Santa Clara: Amtrak

How long will it take: 2 hours

How much will it cost: $12

Comments: Check it. Two hours on Amtrak, 12 bucks and drops you off at the stadium. Plus you can booze on the train. Why is anyone staying in San Francisco again?

alwaysIV38) Philadelphia

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 7 hours 50 minutes

How much will it cost: $376 r/t (Delta)

Comments: Face it Philly, it’s going to be another 50 Super Bowls before you get back there, so might as well enjoy this one.

39) London

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 15 hours

How much will it cost: $770 r/t (Delta or Virgin)

Comments: Send an email to the league offices and they’ll probably put you up in an owners’ box if they find out you’re from the UK. Who knows, you could end up part-owner of our worst import yet (Jacksonville) by day’s end.

40) Houston

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 3.5 hours

How much will it cost: $530 r/t (United)

Comments: I mean, unless you’re going to fill up at Petrol Station you might as well go the whole way. Houstonians can drop into Santa Clara, see how small the Levi’s footprint really is and board after halftime knowing their Texans may have gotten blanked by the Broncos, but there’s a JJ Watt-sized hole in the soul of Santa Clara County.

41) Actual Santa Clara

How to get to Santa Clara: Wake up in Santa Clara

How long will it take: 0

How much will it cost: Nothing. Santa Clara is free (bring some Jetboil though).

Comments: With the money you save staying in the actual host city, you can buy a Tesla. Just don’t watch the new Chelsea Handler docs on Netflix before you do, the Tesla chairs make everyone look like they’ve got major Picard envy.

francoI42) w/James Franco

How to get to Santa Clara with Franco: Hang glider or Jet Pack

How long will it take:28 minutes (James Franco is always 28 minutes or less from wherever you are).

How much will it cost: 1,100 bitcoin

Comments: You won’t find James Franco at your airport or train station. But James Franco is there. Just look somewhere else and that’s where you’ll find him. Usually James Franco will present himself to you when you’re least expecting—like when you go to the dermatologist to get a mole looked at and they find a completely different mole to worry about.

43) Fargo

How to get to Santa Clara: Amtrak

How long will it take: 6 hours

How much will it cost: $600 r/t (Delta)

Comments: You got (or had) that oil sands money. Might as well use it. Plus, now everyone thinks all girls from Fargo are Kirsten Dunst. They are, aren’t they?

44) Minneapolis/St. Paul

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 5 hours 50 minutes hours

How much will it cost: $220 r/t American

Comments: Nothing makes forgetting a missed field goal easier than being somewhere for a few hours where you don’t stack up on a snow berm. Plus, that ‘secret’ Prince show happened in January so you’re not going to miss anything in the Twin Cities till opening day.

swerskiI45) Chicago

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 4 hours

How much will it cost: $223 r/t (American)

Comments: Bill Swerski would go. Also 20 degrees and sleety and Scottsdale is still a month-and-a-half away. $224 is probably only half your tab at Bad Apple on Sunday.

46) Anchorage

How to get to Santa Clara: Sea Plane

How long will it take: 11.5 hours

How much will it cost: $1,800 r/t (Alaska Sea Planes)

Comments: Here’s the deal, you get to land in Biar Island/Redwood Shores after a half-day in a rattling tin can that resembles the plane Josh Lucas flew in Sweet Home Alabama to his strange glass emporium. (Can you tell it’s hard to make 50 yet?) Or stay in AK, ski Alyeska, beers at Moose’s Tooth, gear up from Skinny Raven etc.

47) New Orleans

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 6 hours

How much will it cost: $345 r/t (American)

Comments: Last Super Bowl in NOLA the game actually blacked out before you did. You can change all that Sunday.

48) Miami

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 7 hours 50 minutes

How much will it cost: $388 r/t (United)

Comments: If it was bad enough for LeBron to eschew, then it won’t be mad at you for taking a weekend off. Stay home if you have the Zika though.

patsI49) Boston

How to get to Santa Clara: Plane

How long will it take: 8.5 hours r/t (American)

How much will it cost: $297

Comments: Now that Brady’s got 9 months to watch tape on Denver’s D, you’ll be the lone Chowderhead at the game, save for all your bros who left to go see about a girl on the West Coast.

50) Your couch

How to get to Santa Clara: Push button on remote

How long will it take: 1 second

How much will it cost: Free

Comments: You knew this was coming, right? Stay the fuck home. Get to know your neighbors. Go halves on a keg. Set up the beer pong in the garage and tell the kids they can be the ball boys and girls. Lose track of what square you had by the second series. Laugh while the dog freaks out because your buddy is using his bed for a chair. Make whatever it was that someone posted on Facebook from Tasty and have it turn out nothing like that. Air guitar through Metallica and fall asleep during the fourth quarter.

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