SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KTVU) -- Football fans poured into Levi's Stadium for the San Francisco 49ers' Monday night season opener against the Minnesota Vikings, arriving hours before kickoff in an effort to beat traffic in the South Bay.
The Monday night game meant lots of people left work early to tailgate, but it also means there were plenty more fans still stuck in rush hour traffic.
Some came early, before the gates even opened at 3 p.m.
"I'd rather be here than on Highway 101 for an hour and a half," said 49er fan Jerry Nunez.
The team offered incentives for early birds, including 10 dollars off parking bought in advance and a chance for fans to choose their tailgating spot for the first hour the lots are open.
"And now with open parking the first hour, you gotta get here early so you can get your open parking with your friends," explained fan Carolyn Blundell.
49er supporters can expect other traffic improvements too, like better signage, more exit lanes from the parking lots and a new set up on Great America Parkway. After the game, they'll be using all lanes to direct traffic away from the stadium.
VTA officials say they have 10 extra trains going Monday night in addition to the 28 trains serving commuters.
"10,000 football fans are going to be on the trains with 36,000 commuters in the afternoon, so trains are going to be crowded," said the VTA’s Stacey Hendler Ross.
Other things the 49er faithful can expect to see at this home opener: the addition of 1,400 extra seats in what used to be the standing room only section, the debut of the team’s new black jerseys and a bunch of new starters.
"A lot of change. A lot of people left; a lot of new faces, but we're extremely excited. We've got the Super Bowl coming this year and plan on being in it," said fan Jason Pack.
Levi's Stadium is gearing up for a big party this year. And fans stay they'll start celebrating Monday night.