Understanding the NFL Bag Policy: A Detailed Guide

August 28, 2023

When you’re gearing up for a day of intense fandom at an NFL game, you’re probably thinking about team jerseys, face paint, and memorabilia. What you might not immediately consider is the NFL’s Bag Policy. However, it’s an important part of game day logistics, ensuring both a speedy entrance to the stadium and heightened security for all fans in attendance.

Below, we unpack the NFL Bag Policy so you can focus on the action on the field instead of worrying about getting through the gates.

Event Name & Location Date Tickets
FA Cup Final: Manchester City FC vs. Manchester United FC, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 05/25 TBA at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Sat May 25 2024
UEFA Champions League Final, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 06/01 TBA at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Sat Jun 1 2024
International Friendly: England vs. Iceland, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 06/07 19:45:00.000 at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Fri Jun 7 2024
Bert Kreischer's Fully Loaded Comedy Festival: Tony Hinchcliffe, Whitney Cummings, Ralph Barbosa & more, Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, tickets for 06/20 19:00:00.000 at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, Canton, OH Thu Jun 20 2024
Taylor Swift & Paramore, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 06/21 TBA at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Fri Jun 21 2024
Taylor Swift & Paramore, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 06/22 TBA at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Sat Jun 22 2024
Taylor Swift & Paramore, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 06/23 TBA at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Sun Jun 23 2024
Green Day, Wembley Stadium, tickets for 06/29 TBA at Wembley Stadium, London, LND Sat Jun 29 2024
Detroit Lions Preseason Home Game 1 (Date: TBD), Ford Field, tickets for 07/01 TBA at Ford Field, Detroit, MI Mon Jul 1 2024
New York Jets Preseason Home Game 1 (Date: TBD), MetLife Stadium, tickets for 07/01 TBA at MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ Mon Jul 1 2024

The History of the NFL Bag Policy

The NFL Bag Policy was instituted in 2013 with the objective of increasing public safety while also accelerating the speed at which fans could enter stadiums. It came in response to evolving security threats and the need for quicker screening at entry points.

What is Allowed?

According to the NFL Bag Policy, fans are allowed to bring in bags that are:

  • Clear plastic, vinyl, or PVC bags that do not exceed 12″ x 6″ x 12″.
  • One-gallon clear plastic freezer bags (Ziploc or similar).
  • Small clutch bags, approximately the size of a hand, with or without a handle or strap. These can be carried separately or within a clear bag.

Additional Items

  • Medically necessary items are allowed but will be subject to thorough inspection at a designated gate.
  • Blankets and clothing can be carried over the arm or shoulder, separate from the clear bag.
  • Binoculars, cameras, and smartphones are allowed, but cases are not.

What is Not Allowed?

  • Backpacks, fanny packs, and non-clear purses
  • Coolers
  • Briefcases
  • Computer bags
  • Luggage of any kind
  • Seat cushions with compartments

Why a Clear Bag?

A transparent bag allows for quicker inspections at the security checkpoints. Security personnel can easily see the contents without having to open the bag, making the process faster and more efficient. This is particularly beneficial during high-traffic times when thousands of fans are trying to get into the stadium before kick-off.

Exceptions and Special Considerations

Although the NFL Bag Policy is quite stringent, exceptions are made for medical necessities. If you or someone you’re with requires medical equipment, separate inspections are typically held at designated gates. However, it’s best to check with the specific stadium you will be visiting, as policies may differ slightly.

Common Questions

Can I bring a diaper bag?

Diaper bags are not allowed. Parents with young children are encouraged to use clear bags to carry diapers, wipes, and other necessities.

Can I bring my camera?

Yes, but remember that the case is not allowed. It would be best to carry it separately, outside of its case, and within the dimensions of the clear bag policy.

Tips for Fans

  • Buy Official NFL Bags: To ensure you’re in compliance, consider purchasing an official NFL clear tote bag.
  • Plan Ahead: Sort out what you’ll need during the game to minimize the number of items you bring, thereby expediting the security process.
  • Double-Check: Before leaving, double-check to ensure that all items comply with the NFL Bag Policy.

The NFL Bag Policy aims to make the game-day experience as smooth and secure as possible for fans. By understanding the policy and planning accordingly, you’ll spend less time in line and more time enjoying the game.

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