The best deal? A slam-by-slam comparison

A short addendum to my previous post, which argued that a U.S. Open Grounds Pass might be the best deal in sports. Perhaps a more pertinent question: Is it the best deal in Grand Slam tennis?

By the standards of Grounds Pass pricing at the other majors, the U.S. Open is a little expensive. In Australia, a first-week grounds pass costs about US$23. At Roland Garros, the price is US$29. And at Wimbledon, seemingly the most aristocratic and exclusive slam, the proletariat can stroll the grounds for a mere US$33.

Cost of a first-week grounds pass (US$, based on June 24 exchange rates)

Australian Open $23
Roland Garros $29
Wimbledon $33
U.S. Open $48

Source: Tournament websites

On the other hand, you get more for your grounds pass in New York. At the other slams, a number of the show courts are off limits. At the U.S. Open, it’s only Ashe. During the tournament’s first week, you’ll probably have a chance to see top-10 talent in Louis Armstrong stadium. You can watch top-20 players battle it out in the Grandstand.

At the other slams, by contrast, the grounds pass buyer might do no better than the top-30. Not bad, but for a few bucks more, the U.S. Open allows the cheapskates to watch Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or Juan Martin del Potro manhandle their early-round opponents on showcourts in the shadow of Ashe.

–A. Clarke


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