France may have bragging rights after beating Croatia 4-2 to win the FIFA World Cup for a second time, but in terms of spending at the tournament’s stadiums, it was Latin America and host nation Russia who came out tops.
Data from Visa, the exclusive payment service provider across the 12 stadiums, shows that Russians, unsurprisingly, were the top spenders, buying $8.18 million of goods. Fans from Mexico, which fell at the last-16 stage for a seventh straight World Cup, still managed to get through $1.19 million. In total, fans spent $13.7 million at matches.
Peru made its first World Cup finals appearance since 1982 and the country’s supporters lit up the tournament with their exuberance and unstinting joy. More than 43,000 travelled to Russia, spending $501,000 at stadiums, an amount matched by supporters of Lionel Messi’s Argentina.
Fans of Colombia, eliminated on penalties against England after a tempestuous game, can console themselves that they did at least make the top five spenders’ list, getting through $323,000 on match-day treats.
Six of the eight quarter-finalists and all four semi-finalists were from Europe, yet aside from Russia, Europeans were relatively frugal in their in-stadium spending, a phenomenon perhaps due to the sparse numbers of fans travelling to the tournament.
Newly-crowned world champions France ranked only 12th, with stadium spending of $160,000, while runners-up Croatia – the smallest nation to reach a World Cup final since 1950 – were 28th out of 32. Finally, England were the top-ranked country from Western Europe, spending $318,000.