Soccer enthusiasts around the world look forward to the FIFA World Cup that happens every four years. In 2026, USA, Mexico, and Canada are joining forces to bring together the sports event of the year, MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford has been named as one of the host venues to be home for several World Cup game tournaments representing the USA. There are many preparations underway, but one thing for sure is that North Jersey will be welcoming local and international fanatics to celebrate soccer. Read on for more information surrounding the 2026 FIFA World Cup and how to get to and around MetLife Stadium.
About the 2026 FIFA World Cup
For those unfamiliar with the FIFA World Cup, this event is billed as the world’s “most prestigious football tournament” per the FIFA website. It is an international men’s soccer championship event that occurs every four years. The upcoming 2026 FIFA World Cup will be the 23rd edition of this tournament. Host countries of this world cup will be USA, Canada, and Mexico. Out of those three countries, only 16 cities will be participating. Previously, only a total of 32 teams participated but FIFA has increased the total participating teams to 48. With this increase in total teams, it can bring in more revenue, in terms of ticket sales, and content for audiences worldwide. The games will be held between the months of June and July of 2026.
The last time USA was a host country of the FIFA World Cup was back in 1994. Per Statista, the total attendance was 3,568,567 for the 1994 FIFA World Cup hosted right here in the USA. Fast forward to the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, the final match had a total of 1.5 billion viewers according to FIFA. While comparing this total to the Super Bowl LVII final, it is a drastic number difference as the Super Bowl rang in only a total of 115 million viewers right here in the U.S.
MetLife’s Role in the World Cup
The 2026 FIFA World Cup isn’t the first world cup that MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford has participated in. Previously, the stadium took part in the 1994 FIFA World Cup. During that year, USA had been the host country of the tournament. In May 2023, New Jersey joined forces with New York City in a joint press conference to unveil the region’s joint FIFA World Cup campaign #WEARENYNJ to celebrate being one of the host cities of the tournament. It was a competitive process to be chosen as a host city of the 2026 World Cup. Other cities that were chosen besides NJ + NYC participating are Boston, Dallas, and Philadelphia, among others.
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Both NJ Governor Phil Murphy and NYC Mayor Eric Adams have been campaigning for hopes of the 2026 FIFA World Cup final being held at MetLife Stadium. FIFA has yet to announce the details surrounding where the final will be held. It’s also unknown how many games will be held at MetLife, so stay tuned.
How to Get Tickets
With the 2026 FIFA World Cup being three years away, information about tickets is still being finalized. On the FIFA website, soccer fans can now only register their interest in the 2026 FIFA World Cup. This interest form allows fans to provide their names and email addresses. With this information, fans will soon find out the latest news + information and on how to apply for FIFA World Cup 2026 tickets.
Traveling to MetLife Stadium
There are numerous ways to get to MetLife Stadium. Driving is one choice. MetLife has parking lots that usually open five before an event and will close two hours after an event has ended. Since these FIFA World Cup games classify as non-NFL events, the parking fees are as follows at the time of this article: cars are $40 each, bus + RV are $160 each, and limousines are $100 each. Something to note is that these parking fees are subject to change.
Rent a Party Bus or Limousine
For those traveling in a large group, a party bus or limousine may be an ideal choice. Several party bus and limousine companies offer “tailgating” services to those heading to sports events. In this case, it can be for soccer fans heading to the FIFA World Cup 2026 games. New Jersey LimoBus + Limousine, BBZ Limo, and Party Bus Express are among the options to choose from. These companies each have contact information for further inquiries or instant quota forms in terms of how much these party bus or limo services may cost.
Rideshare is another option. MetLife Stadium has a specific Rideshare Zone that is located in Lot E off of West Peripheral Road, right outside of the Verizon Gate. Once a ride is requested, guests can walk over to this zone and wait for their driver’s instructions to know which row they are parked in. Also, since there is a high demand for rideshare after an event, pricing may surge and change from what was originally the price guests paid.
As a third traveling option, public transportation is accessible to the stadium. NJ Transit has a Meadowlands Rail Service which leaves soccer fans just steps away from MetLife Stadium. In order to use this service, guests must arrive at the Secaucus Junction stop. There are several trains from different regions of New Jersey that are connected to arrive at the Secaucus Junction stop. Participating train routes include the Main-Bergen County Line, Montclair-Boonton Line, Morris + Essex Line, Northeast Corridor, North Jersey Coast Line, Pascack Valley Line, and Port Jervis Line.
Purchasing a ticket for the NJ Transit in advance is a convenient option for travelers coming in from out of state. NJ Transit has its very own mobile app which has a vast range of ticket purchase options to choose from. Monthly passes, weekly passes, and one-way tickets are among the ticket selections featured on NJ Transit. Rail maps are also available to refer to when boarding public transportation, which can be found here.
Accommodations for Soccer Fans
With the World Cup being open for both local and international fans alike, hotel accommodations may be needed to get to and from the games at MetLife. There are various hotels in close proximity to the stadium. Hilton Meadowlands, Hampton Inn Carlstadt, SpringHill Suites by Marriott East Rutherford, and Renaissance Meadowlands Hotel are some of the nearby hotels in the surrounding area. Some of these hotels also provide local shuttle service for those needing to go to the MetLife Stadium.
Short-term rentals may be an option for those traveling from out of state. However, each town has its own restrictions and laws regarding short-term rentals. Some towns consider it illegal or have certain guidelines. Therefore, it is important to research fully when it comes to these accommodations.
Keep up with more information surrounding the 2026 FIFA World Cup and MetLife Stadium’s role in the sports event of the year here.