NOTE: The Giants have changed their re-entry policy this year and unless it’s a family emergency you cannot be re-admitted to the park once you have gone outside the gates. This eliminates the strategy of using four tickets to get four bobbleheads, then dropping them off at your car and returning to watch the game.
Almost all Giants games at AT&T Park are sellouts. Even with similar sized crowds at every game, bobblehead days, replica ring days, Dodger games, playoff race showdowns and other high-demand events have “unwritten rules” all their own.
The biggest of these rules is “Come early if you can.”
The gates open two hours before the start time of each game.
Why are there issues for some games when every game is a sellout?
Even with bobbleheads or replica rings for almost every fan, they eventually do run out and this fear still makes people anxious to hurry to find the right spot and get in.
Apart from this, my personal theory is that more first-time, non-regular fans are at the high-profile games, and they don’t know where to go or what to do (unless they read this website!).
The first-timers can also snarl traffic near the ballpark as they try to find their way. This makes it a great time to take mass transit, which comes directly to AT&T Park.
You’ll find higher prices (some unbelievably high) for parking close to AT&T Park after you survive that bad traffic. The Giants’ lots prices don’t change, but closer private lots (which are often easier to exit after the game) can add $20 to $40 or more to their usual high fees.
It isn’t just the car traffic that gets tangled up on these extra-interest days. The lines of people waiting to enter through our separate Field Club entrance and the neighboring Luxury Suite entrance get so long that both lines intermix, which produces confusion, delays and lots of “excuse me, sorry” moments.
More and more people with baby carriages are looking to use the elevators instead of going up the ramps. This means they line up at the Luxury Suite entrance, causing it to back up and creating confusion on these high-traffic days. I think this actually slows them down rather than speeding them up, because the Main Gate lines ironically go faster than the Luxury Suite line!
The good news: The in-seat menus for our section in Field Club often have an even wider range of choices on these extra-popular days, making an excellent dining experience even better.
Bobbleheads are very popular, and to avoid the chaos of the pre-2013 process (when 40,000 people tried to line up earlier than everyone else to make sure they got one of the 20,000 gifts) they now give away 40,000 bobbleheads each bobblehead day. This shortens the lines and reduces the angst and panic that would seize the park each time those dates rolled around.
Also new since 2013: no bobble heads or other items will be given to fans entering through the Marina Gate, the Public House Restaurant or the Giants Dugout Store. You can still enter the park through these gates, but there will be no goodies there. Urban legend held that these were “the last spots to run out” so of course more people jammed these secondary entrances.
If you’re crazy for the gnomes that are given away at a couple of games a year, note that these items are NOT being doubled to 40,000 guests, so gnome fans still have to get there early to ensure they get their items.
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