Will American Super Bowl Ads Air in Canada for the Last Time in 2019?

Will American Super Bowl Ads Air in Canada for the Last Time in 2019?

Karl Latkovic

Every year, America's largest corporations spend millions of dollars for commercial slots during the Super Bowl; an event that has exceeded 100-million viewers since 2010.

For many fans, these big-budget advertisements are as much looked forward to as the championship game itself.

Let's be honest, if a brand is willing to spend $5.25 million dollars for a 30-second spot, the entertainment value will be there.

Watch 2019 Super Bowl Ads Before They Air

Source: CNN Business


For Canadian viewers, these highly anticipated commercials were replaced with local advertising due to "simultaneous substitution", a process mandated by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

And so, for several years, Canadians have complained to the CRTC to loosen this practice during the Super Bowl broadcast.

In 2016, the voices of many Canadians were heard and the CRTC announced simultaneous substitution would no longer be allowed during the big game.

While many Canadians were excited to be able to see the hyped advertisements, the deal was clearly unfavorable for Bell Media, who later announced the deal cost them up to $11-million in ad-revenue during the 2017 Super Bowl alone.

Bell Media did not stand still, fighting the policy in court alongside the National Football League (NFL) and select US senators.

While the court order was dismissed, Chapter 15 (ANNEX 15-D) of the new United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA) will abolish this short-lived policy - a sigh of relief for Bell Media.

Though, until the USMCA deal is ratified, which is not guaranteed by any means, Canadians will be able to join the fun and watch the golden commercials alongside their neighbours to the south during Super Bowl LIII; for what may be the last time they do so. . . legally. 

Super Bowl LIII will air Sunday, February 3th at 3:30 p.m. PT / 6:30 p.m. ET on a variety of networks. Keep in mind, US commercials will only be available to Canadians during the game (from kick-off to the final play) on US station broadcasting.

Karl Latkovic
Karl Latkovic
Transpera Technologies Inc.