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Tap water snafu in Foxboro creates marketing nightmare

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Patriots’ vendors aren’t making marketing easy with their upcharge of tap water after the stadium failed to order enough bottles of water.

water bottle tap water

Foxboro drought

Football season has begun, and it’s unlike any season before it. Though most people have been overwhelmed with the controversy between the players and the White House, another controversy brewed under the surface.

It was a particularly hot Sunday afternoon in Foxboro, Massachusetts, as the Patriots geared up for their game against the Houston Texans. The temperatures were in the 80s as fans poured into Gillette Stadium, thirsty for football and in this case, water. However, by the second quarter, vendors had run out of bottled water. That’s right; the entire venue ran out of water.

Straight out the tap

As the stadium scrambled to replenish their water supply, fans already in line were offered water at a hefty price. It was reported that vendors charged $4.50 per cup of tap water. Just to put this into perspective, the average cost for a gallon of bottled water in the US is $1.22. This price alone is three hundred times the cost of tap water.

Think of how many gallons of tap water $4.50 would buy.

Some argue that the insanely high priced water was more about the container than the water itself. Vendors were not equipped with spare cups to serve water in, so they had to resort to serving drinks from soda cups. Somehow in the confusion, they decided that $4.50 was the right price to charge for tap water. I hope the cup was at least a collector’s item.

Understandably fans were upset by this obscene upselling.

They took to social media to express their frustrations with one man even claiming he spent $45 just buying his family water during the game. It is ironic considering Tom Brady is an open advocate for solely drinking filtered water. Stacey James, a spokesperson for the Patriots apologized for the occurrence simply stating, “That should not have happened.” He also promised that it would never happen again.

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Too little too late

Is this apology enough? The fact is that it should never have happened in the first place. The mistake of running out of water is one thing, but to make a profit from the necessity of water is something entirely different.


Written By

Natalie is a Staff Writer at The American Genius and co-founded an Austin creative magazine called Almost Real Things. When she is not writing, she spends her time making art, teaching painting classes and confusing people. In addition to pursuing a writing career, Natalie plans on getting her MFA to become a Professor of Fine Art.

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