SALT LAKE CITY - Second only to the Olympics, the World Cup Qualifier game between USA and Costa Rica was the largest international sporting event ever hosted in Utah. With 40,586 people in attendance, U.S. Soccer not only brought a large crowd, but also a large purse. A recent study conducted by the University of Utah Bureau of Economic and Business Research (BEBR) shows that 15,477 visitors came to Utah from out-of-state or out-of-country.
From the out-of-state/out-of-country visitors alone, the BEBR's study estimated that the state of Utah enjoyed a 12.7 million dollar boost to its economy, a boost that does not include the in-state visitor spending or the hours of national/international media coverage the state of Utah received from hosting the World Cup Qualifying match.
The BEBR's study is based on 465 surveys of fans present at the game, with a 95 percent confidence interval and a margin of error of plus or minus 4.52 percent.
In addition to the 15,477 out-of-state visitors, the World Cup Qualifier also hosted over 25,000 Utah residents, 83 out of state journalists, 45 members of US Soccer's board of directors, 40 USA team members and staff, and 35 Costa Rican team members and staff.
From the 15,477 out of state visitors alone, the USA/Costa Rican World Cup game brought an estimated $12.7 million boost to the Utah economy.
In addition to the $12.7 million, Love Communications estimates that Utah received $5.25 million of media exposure from the ESPN 2 broadcast, which reached out to 521,975 homes in the United States, as well as a large but unquantifiable international audience.
The BEBR's research shows that on average the out-of-state visitors stayed for 3.15 nights, spending an average of $349.85 per day or $821.10 for their entire stay in Utah.
BEBR estimates that 4,190 international visitors were present for the game, most coming from Costa Rica.
According to RSL ticket receipts, 48 out of the 50 states were represented at the World Cup Qualifier.