Last updated: 08:11 AM ET, Sun September 11 2016

5 Tips For Heading Out on the Road This NFL Season

Features & Advice | Patrick Clarke | September 09, 2016

5 Tips For Heading Out on the Road This NFL Season

Photo via NFL/Facebook.  

The 2016 NFL season kicks off Thursday, and while many Americans will be glued to their television screens for the next five months, others will take to the road to support their team behind enemy lines.

Since rooting on your favorite squad can be stressful enough, here are five tips to make life easier for the traveling NFL fan. 

Take Lots of Photos...and Cash in!

Capturing memories on your phone or camera is easy, fun and could ultimately win you an epic Super Bowl sleepover come February. 

Courtyard by Marriott's Super Bowl LI Sleepover Contest runs now through Nov. 4. and only requires that you post a photo of yourself posing as the NFL's most passionate fan along with the hashtag #CourtyardSuperBowlContest to Twitter or Instagram.

Even if you don't win, documenting your pigskin-inspired travels on social media is a great to make your friends and family jealous.

Choose Your Bar Wisely

Nothing pairs with NFL football quite like beer and food, but don't stop just anywhere when you hit the road this season. Make sure your pre- or post-game hangout spot gets the stamp of approval from the hometown fans. 

If you're tailgating in a new city, ask around to find out where the best drinks and snacks can be found. 

Still, you can't go wrong with City Tap if you're in Cleveland, Ohio, for a Browns game or Stadium View Bar & Grill during a visit to Green Bay. Located just one block from Lambeau Field, Stadium View is the spot to be during a Packers game considering tickets to see the Green and Gold can be so tough to come by. 

Apply for TSA PreCheck

For NFL fans flying to support their favorite team on the road, the Transportation Security Administration's PreCheck is a great way to reduce the headaches that oftentimes arise during a trip to the airport.

READ MORE: 3 Tips For Receiving Exceptional Customer Service at the Airport

A five-year membership costs just $85 and allows you to breeze through security without having to remove your shoes, laptop, liquids, belt or light jacket. According to the TSA's official website, 97 percent of PreCheck passengers waited less than five minutes at security in July 2016.

That's less than half the time it takes to complete halftime of an NFL regular season game.

Don't Miss These Attractions 

PHOTO: Chicago's Magnificent Miles (photo via The Magnificent Mile/Twitter).  

Perhaps more so than the game itself, experiencing a new destination can be the highlight of traveling for an NFL showdown.

Heading to Chicago for a Bears game? Be sure to visit the Magnificent Mile for blocks and blocks of dining, shopping and entertainment. Meanwhile, Boston's Newbury Street, another underrated attraction, is just an hour's drive away from Foxborough, Massachusetts, home of the New England Patriots. 

READ MORE: Top 5 Trending US Attractions Heading into Shoulder Season

Similar attractions NFL fans should have on their list in 2016 are New Orleans' Jackson Square, Denver's Union Station and San Francisco's Pier 39. They may not be the top tourist hotspot in their respective cities, but they'll allow you to experience the most in a shorter amount of time and with less effort.

Consider Airbnb, Other Alternative Accommodations

One recent study shows that Airbnb beats out hotels in terms of value in a majority of the U.S.'s top cities.

Therefore, depending on the length of your visit to an NFL city, an Airbnb rental could save you a significant chunk of money, which could be put toward a better stadium seat, another snack from the concession stand or whatever else a football fan wants or needs.

However, if you're only in town for one or two nights, you may be better off opting for the comfort and convenience of a hotel room. 

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