Is cardboard to stand on allowed inside Arrowhead Stadium at Chiefs games? What to know

For almost as long as people have been going to football games in the cold, they have been bringing pieces of cardboard to stand on.

But in recent days, as the Kansas City Chiefs prepare to play one of the coldest games in their history at home, fans began to worry about the rules.

Are fans allowed to bring pieces of cardboard into Arrowhead Stadium?

In discussions on social media, some fans said the cardboard — to be used as a carpet or floor mat to protect their feet from the cold concrete and stay a little warmer — would not be allowed inside the stadium.

“They won’t let you bring it in the game anymore. Tried this last year and they made everyone throw it in a bin before scanning tickets…,” one user on X, formerly known as Twitter, said.

“FYI... At the Christmas Eve game last year, they weren’t allowing ppl to take cardboard in. We brought those foam pad pieces for floors that hook together like puzzle pieces and they let us take those in though,” another user said.

Others said security allowed them in with cardboard, but they had written Chiefs-related things on the cardboard and used it as a fan sign, which is allowed inside the stadium.

So what is the ruling on cardboard?

The answer, according to Chiefs officials, is that you can bring it in. But only up to a certain size — which may account for the differing experiences reported by fans.

“Cardboard is allowed if it meets the size requirements laid out in our banner/sign policy – no larger than 3’x5’,” Luke Shanno, senior director of corporate communications, said. “It does not have to be written on.”

While cardboard is allowed, floor mats and carpet squares are not, according to the Chiefs’ prohibited items list.

The weather forecast for Kansas City on Saturday, when the Chiefs play the Miami Dolphins, calls for a a high temperature near 14 degrees. It’ll be colder than that at kickoff, which is at 7 p.m., and the low temperature Saturday night into Sunday morning is expected to be -2, according to the National Weather Service.

For those fans heading to the game, here are a few tips to protect yourself in the cold.

What can I do to stay warm at Arrowhead?

Shanno shared these tips from the Chiefs:

  • Bundle up with loose fitting layers and cover all exposed skin.

  • Guests may carry in blankets (without zippers or compartments), draped over their shoulder during the security screening process, as well as portable chargers and non-dry cell batteries (both no larger than 6”x3”x1.5”) to power heated apparel. Battery packs must be disconnected during security inspection.

  • Fans needing additional layers on-site may visit one of the many Pro Shop locations that will be stocked with warm-wear.

  • Stay hydrated. All guests may bring in one factory-sealed bottle of water, 20 ounces or less.

One system fans can follow is the COLD system, as said by doctors in the Sports Medicine and Performance Center at The University of Kansas Health System:

  • Clean: clean clothes avoid dirt or moisture that could allow the wind and cold to penetrate.

  • Overheat: layered clothing with zippers allows you to ventilate to avoid sweating.

  • Layer: wool or synthetic layers provide optimum warmth. Doctors say avoid cotton.

  • Dry: select clothes that will help you stay dry.

There have been plenty of cold games at Arrowhead Stadium, including this 2004 match attended by Ronda Beckett.
There have been plenty of cold games at Arrowhead Stadium, including this 2004 match attended by Ronda Beckett.

The Star put together a cold weather guide that includes these tips:

  • What to wear on top: Make sure the first layer is something sweat-wicking to keep you dry throughout the game. Then, consider a wool sweater or heavy turtleneck for insulation. Top that off with something that will combat wind and cold, such as an insulated, waterproof jacket, preferably with a hood you can use to provide an extra layer for your head.

  • What to wear on the bottom: First, long johns. Then find the most insulated, waterproof pants you can find. Ski/snow pants or lined coveralls are acceptable on a night like this. Fleece-lined pants work well, too. Consider a blanket to keep your legs warm.

  • Mittens, not gloves: Mittens trap heat better by keeping your fingers together.

  • Protect the head: One scarf for your neck. One scarf for your face. A hat with ear flaps.

  • Keep it toasty: Hand and foot warmers fit inside pockets and boots to keep your fingers and toes warm. They are relatively cheap and often are distributed at games.

  • Shoes: Uggs or other furry boots might keep your toes warm, but other shoe options that are insulated and waterproof might be your best bet. And don’t dare wear cotton socks. Consider wearing some kind of sweat-wicking liner sock with a thick wool sock on top.

  • Lay off the alcohol: Even if it initially makes you feel warmer, drinking alcohol actually lowers the core temperature of your body. Other studies show that drinking reduces your body’s ability to enact natural defenses against cold, such as shivering. Instead, look for hot chocolate before it runs out.

  • Cheer, and move while you do it: Stand still at your own peril. Moving, cheering and screaming are going to increase blood flow and keep you warm. Plus, the only thing worse than being at a freezing cold game is being at a freezing cold game while your team is losing.