TQL Stadium Guide

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 Fan Code of Conduct
Major League Soccer and each of its Clubs are committed to creating a safe, comfortable, and enjoyable match-day experience for all fans visiting MLS stadiums and facilities. MLS and its Clubs are also deeply committed to fostering an inclusive environment, free of discrimination and harassment. This Fan Code of Conduct addresses conduct that is inconsistent with these goals and detracts from the match-day experience.

The following conduct is prohibited in the Stadium and all parking lots, facilities and areas controlled by the Club or MLS:
  • Behavior that is unruly, disruptive, threatening or violent in nature, including verbal or physical harassment of match officials, players, staff or fans
  • Conduct that is illegal
  • Conduct that results in damage to the venue or other personal property
  • Displaying signs, symbols, images, using language or making gestures that are threatening, abusive, or discriminatory, including on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, gender identity, ability, and/or sexual orientation
  • Displaying signs, symbols or images for commercial purposes or for electioneering, campaigning or advocating for or against any candidate, political party, legislative issue, or government action
  • Entering or attempting to enter the field, the field track, the tunnel or any other location other than that permitted by the fan’s ticket or credential
  • Possession of an unauthorized pyrotechnic device, smoke or firework or other Prohibited Items*
  • Throwing objects of any kind, including streamers
  • Failing to follow requests from venue staff regarding stadium operations, policies and emergency response procedures
  • Declining to promptly return a ball that enters the stands
  • Irresponsible use or consumption of alcohol or other substances
  • Making unauthorized transmissions or play-by-play accounts of the match
  • Any behavior that otherwise targets other fans or interferes with other fans’ enjoyment of the game CONFIDENTIAL

Any fan who violates any of these provisions may be subject to penalty, including, but not limited to, ejection without refund, loss of ticket privileges for future games and revocation of season tickets. Any fan who (1) conducts themselves in an extremely disruptive or dangerous manner (“Level 1 Offenses”), or (2) commits multiple violations during a 12-month period, may be banned from attending future MLS matches for up to a year or longer. Level 1 Offenses include, but are not limited to, violent behavior, threatening, abusive or discriminatory conduct or language, trespassing or throwing objects onto the field, use or possession of unauthorized pyrotechnics or other dangerous Prohibited Items, or illegal conduct.

Depending on the nature and severity of the violation, individuals who violate this Fan Code of Conduct may be required to submit a written request for readmission and participate in an online Fan Code of Conduct Education Class (FCEC) in order to be reinstated.

Please note that MLS and its Clubs reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone who has engaged in harassment of match officials, opposing team members, staff or other fans or who have otherwise violated this Code of Conduct using social or digital media or other forms of communication.

Conduct Offenses

  • Fighting
  • Fan Violence
  • Assaults/batteries on staff, vendors, or other patrons
  • Using racial, sexual, xenophobic, and/or homophobic language (including on signs or visible representations) or gestures or conduct
  • Throwing objects, of any kind, towards the field, players, and/or officials
  • Causing significant damage to University or FC Cincinnati property
  • Provoking and/or inciting threatening or abusive behavior
  • Possession or use of an unauthorized pyrotechnic device, smoke, or firework, or attempting to introduce one inside the stadium perimeter
  • Alcohol management – purchasing, or providing for consumption, alcohol for an underage minor (individual not of or above the age of 21)
  • Field intrusion onto the field of play or designated Critical Area
  • Level 1 offenses are considered serious offenses. These will carry a ban ranging from six months to one year based on aggravating and mitigating factors.
  • An individual must provide a written request for readmission and participate in a Fan Code of Conduct Education Class (FCEC) for his/her access to be reinstated.

FC Cincinnati reserves the right to also sanction a Supporter Group (member) for violations of the Fan Code of Conduct.
  • Targeted use of obscene or abusive language or gestures, or displaying any inappropriate sign or visible representation.
  • Entering, or attempting to enter, any unauthorized area, including designated critical areas
  • Alcohol Management – excessive consumption of alcohol
  • Ignoring instructions by a University, Stadium Security, MLS, or FC Cincinnati Representatives
  • Refusing to return the match ball
  • Other misconduct where Nippert Stadium Equipment is the victim (i.e. theft, scalping, minor property damages, etc.)
  • Level 2 offenses carry a range of suspensions, depending on if they are the 1st or 2nd offense. Prior to the 1st penalty, individuals can be given a warning for their behavior.
  • 1st offense suspensions ranges from 1-3 games
    2nd offense suspensions range from 3-5 games  
  • An individual who commits any two offenses in the category has to complete the FCEC before he/she can be reinstated. Any 3rd offense in a 12-month period will trigger a 1-year ban.
FC Cincinnati reserves the right to also sanction a Supporter Group for violations of the Fan Code of Conduct.

MLS security policies will be in place for all home games, meaning all fans will be subject to security checks – including wanding and bag checks – as they enter the stadium gates.

 Prohibited Items

Certain exceptions to the list of prohibited items will be made for those fans attending FC Cincinnati matches as a member of a recognized supporter club, and for items pre-approved by FC Cincinnati, Major League Soccer and TQL Stadium.

  • Aerosol cans or pressurized containers
  • Alcohol or Illegal Substances
  • Bags, coolers and luggage not in compliance with the Clear Bag Policy 
  • Balloons and Beach Balls
  • Cameras with detachable lenses, camcorders and associated equipment (tripods and camera battery packs)
  • Confetti or streamers
  • Drones
  • Fireworks of any kind including but not limited to, flares, smoke bombs and incendiary devices
  • Hover-boards or Birds
  • Laptops, iPads, tablets or other large electronic devices
  • Laser Pointers
  • Metal or glass containers of any kind
  • Noisemaking Devices (i.e. whistles, air horns, bells, thundersticks, vuvuzelas)
  • Outside Food and Beverages
  • Poles to Display Banners, Flags, etc. (constructed of hollow PVC pipe)
  • Pets (Note: exception for certified service animals)
  • Selfie Sticks
  • Sticks or flag poles not in compliance with the Flags and Signs Policy
  • Strollers or baby seats may not be taken into the stands or left in section entrance
  • Video or Recording Devices (professional cameras with tripods and battery packs capabilities)
  • Weapons of any kind (knives, pepper spray, stun guns, concealed weapons, or firearms, etc...)
  • Any other item deemed to be inappropriate or dangerous by Security Staff


Denied Entry Protocol

FC Cincinnati Stadium Security staff reserves the right to deny entry to any guest for any reason. When this occurs, a Law Enforcement Officer will be brought over to document why the guest is not being permitted into the stadium.

Emergency Evacuation Policy

In the event of an emergency evacuation, TQL Stadium working staff as well as the Game Presentation Announcer will advise patrons on the following steps to exit the stadium’s perimeter in order to get out of harms-way. If this occurs, all patrons will be asked to quickly adhere, in an orderly manner, to the instructions provided below.

Lightning/Severe Weather Evacuation Policy

FCC Lightning Policy: In-Game Delays

Once the TQL Stadium gates are open and lightning is detected in the area, FC Cincinnati will initiate the following protocol.

Lighting within 15 miles of the stadium – Stadium Warning

  • A stadium announcement will be made informing fans of lightning in the area.
  • Immediate action is not needed.
  • We will also close all merchandise tents.

Lighting within eight (8) miles of the stadium – Stadium Evacuation

  • Public address and video board announcements will be made informing fans to seek safe shelter (see above)
  • No spectators will be allowed into the stadium – or into outdoor seating – during a lightning delay
  • Spectators forced to leave the facility will be allowed to re-enter with their game tickets following the delay
  • The delay will continue for 30 minutes following the last lightning strike within the 8-mile radius of the stadium
  • Updates will be made on the Nippert Stadium video board, via PA announcements and on the club’s Twitter account (@fccincinnati)

FCC Lightning Policy: Pre-Game Delays

If a lightning delay occurs before TQL Stadium gates have opened to the public, FC Cincinnati will initiate the following protocol:

Lighting within 15 miles of the stadium – Stadium Warning

  • A stadium announcement will be made informing staff of lightning in the area.
  • Immediate action is not needed.
  • Merchandise tents will be monitored

Lighting within eight (8) miles of the stadium – Stadium Evacuation

  • Public address, video board announcements and posts on @FCCincinnati Twitter account will be made informing fans to seek safe shelter and remain in their cars if they are near the stadium
    • As soon as a timeline for gates opening and kickoff are determined, they will also be relayed on those outlets
  • No spectators will be allowed into the stadium during a pregame lightning delay.
    • Spectators are also reminded that Sheakley Lawn and the stadium perimeter are exposed areas and are not considered safe shelter.
  • The delay will continue for 30 minutes following the last lightning strike within the 8-mile radius of the stadium
  • Gates will open 40 minutes following the last lightning strike within the 8-mile radius of the stadium
  • If necessary, kick off will be delayed long enough to allow both teams and officials a sufficient on-field warm up period


 Merchandise & Apparel

Fans can purchase FC Cincinnati merchandise and apparel at the Team Store located at TQL Stadium.

Merchandise Locations:
The Team Shop: Located on the lower, concourse level behind section 112
South Location: Located behind section 126
Suites: Located in the level 2 lounge
First Financial Club
Hours of Operation:
All concourse and club locations open when gates open and close after the post-game press conference concludes (press conference will be played on main screen).



 Box Office
The box office is located at the Mercy Health Plaza on the south end of the stadium, next to the Allegiant Gate on street level.
 The Bailey

Fans will need to show their ticket to get access to the Bailey seating area


 Where is TQL Stadium?

Heart of Downtown Cincinnati
1501 Central Pkwy, Cincinnati, OH 45214

What time do gates open?

Gates open 90 minutes prior to kickoff.

What gate should I enter when I arrive?

You can enter the stadium at any gate, we strongly recommend following the gate guide to speed up your entry and assist us in easing movements around the stadium.

View Gate Guide

What time do parking lots open?

Parking lots open 3 hours before kickoff.

 Am I allowed to bring in a seat cushion or portable seat?

Yes, the seat must be no wider than 18 inches in width.

What seats are under cover?

All seats are covered by the roof. However, lower rows may not remain dry based on wind