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Whether it’s expensive or cheap hockey tickets, Seeing a Montreal Canadiens hockey game at the Bell Centre is at the top of most hockey fan’s list on their trip to Montreal.
There’s no doubt that Montreal is a hockey city. The Montreal Canadiens is one of the longest standing and most successful franchises of the NHL.
It’s not often a hockey fan pass at a chance to see a game at The Bell Centre. But for the ultimate fans, will a cheap hockey ticket suffice?
The Montreal Canadiens
Ville de Montréal is rooted in hockey history. In fact, when the NHL first began in 1917, Quebec hosted three of the first five official franchises.
Two of these Quebec teams were from Montreal, the Canadiens and the Wanderers.
Given that one of the city’s original teams are still fighting hard on the ice today, it’s not surprising this team has a hoard of proud, devoted fans.
The Bell Centre Experience
When there’s a game, you can expect loyal fans to flock to the Bell Centre in Montreal’s downtown core for one of the busiest hockey experiences.
Forbes notes that this arena is known to be one of the rowdiest. So, for a franchise with millions of fans, just where do you put them all?
Fortunately, the Bell Centre is the largest hockey arena in the world with a capacity of over 21, 000, cheering (or booing) fans. Even with that capacity, depending on the season, games can be constantly sold out.
Hockey players themselves love playing in Montréal for the city’s energetic vibe. The Habs have some hardcore fans and they aren’t afraid to show it.
Hockey fans can usually expect games hosted in Montréal to be lively with a crowd that doesn’t hold back.
The Bell Centre is known not just for having the best fans, but for having the best ice too! The venue is a favourite arena for hockey players to show off their skills.
Cheap Hockey Ticket vs Expensive Hockey Ticket
With over 21, 000 seats to choose from at the Bell Centre, you can count on tickets to come in a range of prices (like most venues).
Whether you’re flying into the city specifically for a game, making it a part of your trip, or your a local looking to support your home team, budgets can vary.
Is it worth saving up for the best seats in the house? Or will the experience of being at the Bell Centre for a Canadiens game be enough to scratch the itch?
Fortunately, we had the chance to see two different games at two different price points (sound familiar?).
We’ve laid out all the information on both experiences so we can all compare.
Cheap Hockey Ticket
- Game: Florida Panthers @ Montreal Canadiens
- Date: September 19, 2018
- Price: $11.68 CAD
- Seat: Blue Goal 434 – Row C – Seat 17
- Transportation: Metro and Walking $3.25
I became a hockey fan in Montreal (you can’t avoid it; they suck you in and before you know it you’re yelling “
While I’ve always been excited about the idea of seeing a home game, opportunities slipped as they do.
It wasn’t until we settled into our new apartment, and hockey season started trickling in, my partner came across a set of pre-season tickets for about $7 CAD each on
I’ll be blunt; the Habs had a pretty shitty season last year so the prices were understandable.
Even though the opposing team wasn’t doing much better, it was a chance to see a Montreal Canadiens game for less than a night at the movies.
This ticket includes: entrance to the game.
Arrival and Entrance
We showed up to the Bell Centre about thirty minutes before puck drop, just when a crowd was starting to form.
We found the entrance and did the shuffle through the doors and through security as things started to get busier. If you’re not a fan of crowds, this can definitely be annoying.
To find our seats we followed the numbers down a hall, and up the escalators that would show off taunting food and stadium boxes as the stairs climbed up.
Once in our section, it was like any other stadium setup so it was pretty straightforward to find our seats after that. We scoped out the bathrooms and got settled.
Seats and View
We were pretty much in the highest section, but even then, we were actually able to get a decent view of the rink. I will say, it does feel awkward being up so high in tiny bleachers.
The seats themselves were comfortable for the entirety of the game, and not all seats were occupied in our section. This is probably due to the fact that it was a preseason game.
Bathroom and Concession
Before the first period ended, we made our way to the bathrooms on our floor.
After I saw that the line for the bathrooms was like the line for an amusement park ride, I thought I’d rather stretch my legs instead of being herded through a crowd.
“Yeah there’s a lot of people but the line actually moves,” he said.
When you’ve been to enough events, you know that if you don’t begin your exit early, you’ll be stuck amongst the herd.
At the end of the game, expect to be hoarded down many flights of red metal stairs that will lead you out to the walkway where it all began.
Club Desjardins Hockey Ticket with VIP Tour
- Game: Vancouver Canucks @ Montreal Canadiens
- Date: January 03, 2019
- Price: $398 total (VIP Tour: $150 / Ticket $248)
- Seat: Blue Goal 434 – Row C – Seat 17
- Transportation: Metro: $6
Before I continue, there’s no way we could’ve afforded these tickets on our own. If we could, we wouldn’t have settled for the $7 game just months ago.
These tickets including the new Bell Centre VIP tour was an amazing gift to my partner from their family. Of course, I was jealous, but Josh was able to get the ultimate experience that led to this comparison.
Of course, the metro is still the most convenient (and cheapest) method of transportation. The Montreal STM can be great, especially during busy downtown hours, and especially during a sporting event.
Arrival and Entrance
The VIP tour started at 5:15. Upon meeting the tour guide, guests were immediately given a lanyard-pass and a $25 gift card to Taverne 1909 Moderne, the Bell Centre’s on-site restaurant.
Bell Centre VIP Tour
The group waiting for the tour was split into French and English-speaking. The English-speaking group was smaller with about six people, while French-speaking group had about ten.
Then commenced the tour. My partner stuck with the smaller English-speaking group and were given a pretty thorough tour of the entire arena.
Guests were shown everything from the media room, to the loading area in the basement. The tour also included pitstops to the music room, broadcast room, and everything in between. You really do get the VIP tour.
If you haven’t heard of these tours before, that’s because they’re very new. It showed during some confusing waiting times between rooms.
Rink Side Experience
The tour started coming to an end around 7:00 PM. This means the tour lasted almost two hours.
The Bell Centre is not a small arena, and after spending two hours walking up and down the venue, my partner remembers being tired and just wanting to sit.
Fans know that before every game, you can catch a glimpse of some of your favourite players warming up.
Well, you’ll get to be right front and centre with these VIP tour passes. Even with little energy left, you’ll be able to snap some pretty cool shots of the fellas on the ice.
Seats and View
The seats in the Club Desjardins section of the Bell Centre were actually narrower than the seats we previously had.
The seats also seemed closer together than the ones in the nosebleeds, but they were a little more comfier.
The spacing around the seating was also much more convenient for fans moving in and out of the row.
The view, as you can imagine was, of course, better than the seats higher up, but views were still a little limited.
Of course, you won’t see everything during a live game and still, nothing beats the experience of seeing a puck in the net.
The seats at the front of the Club Desjardins section seems as if you’ll get a much better view than still having to fight with heads, or struggle to see the scoreboard.
Bathroom and Concession
This is the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Free food!
As a pescetarian, my partner wasn’t sure if there would be many options in terms of food, but there surprisingly is!
Guests will have a number of options to choose from since everything at the concession stands at the Bell Centre is included (except alcohol). So go ahead, see how much you can eat in one game.
The bathrooms in this section were much more reasonable than in the nosebleeds.
Lines were shorter, and the crowd was smaller, but you’ll still need to leave a bit of extra time for maximum efficiency.
When leaving the Club Desjardins section, you’ll be lumped in with the rest of crowd once the game is finished.
Just as if you were sitting in any other section, you’ll want to leave early to avoid the herd.
During the game, guests of the VIP Tour were given practice pucks from the evening’s game.
It came with a plastic enclosure so you can keep it on display in your hockey shrine.
If you’re a hockey fan, the experience of seeing a game at the Bell Centre is a great one, no matter the price.
If you’re celebrating, have the budget, or just want to amp up your hockey experience a bit more, choosing a more expensive ticket will ensure you have less to worry about (also, free food!).
So Which is Better?
There are definite benefits with choosing an expensive hockey ticket over a cheap ticket, and adding the VIP Tour makes for quite the evening.
However, your budget matters more. Burning a hole in your wallet could put a damper on your experience altogether. So, if the cheap ticket is what you can afford, the experience is still definitely worth it.
It’s been said that there are no bad seats at the Bell Centre, so chances are, you’ll always be able to see your team in action, regardless of the price.