The Waste Management Phoenix Open has the highest attendance on the PGA Tour. It's not even close. The crowds at TPC Scottsdale are monstrous -- and they're potentially going to be even bigger since this year, it's a designated event.
The galleries get to TPC Scottsdale early -- typically, at dawn -- and they stay there late, typically well past sunset. The stands at the 16th hole fill up quickly, with thousands of people filing into the stadium seating around the infamous par 3 and making it hard to get a seat throughout the day.
The Uber and Lyft lines are ridiculously long, trying to get overserved (but responsible) golf lovers and tournaments goers to their next destination quickly.
Golf fans know anecdotally the Waste Management Phoenix Open attendance, but really, how many people come to the tournament at TPC Scottsdale every year?
Waste Management Phoenix Open attendance
The Thunderbirds, the organization which puts on the Waste Management Phoenix Open, have long been happy to share Waste Management Phoenix Open attendance figures (estimates). In the past, they have shared the attendance figures by round and for the total tournament. The organization did so with pride, beaming at how the community supports the event.
The record for Waste Management Phoenix Open attendance was set in 2018, when a record of 719,179 fans went through the turnstiles, including a record 216,818 for Saturday’s third round.
In previous years, Waste Management Phoenix Open attendance has still been strong. In 2017, the attendance was 655,434. In 2016, the attendance was 618,365. In 2015, the attendance was 564,368.
Saturday is, by far, the most popular round to attend the tournament. With Super Bowl Sunday typically now the end date for the tournament, Sunday is more lightly attended and more reserved for golf fans. Behind the 216,818 figure for Saturday in 2018, the prior record was 204,906 in 2017 and 201,003 in 2016.
However, the attendance figures will not be known going forward. In 2019, the Thunderbirds decided to stop releasing attendance estimates. The official answer is to focus more on the charitable component of the event. That doesn't mean that there won't be somewhere around 600,000 or 700,000 people for the week inside the gates at TPC Scottsdale in 2023.