February 25, 2021 Casino, Land-Based

Las Vegas January air travel down 64% y-o-y

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McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas recorded approximately 1.5m passengers for January, a 64% decline year-on-year.

January marked the fewest number of air travelers through Las Vegas since July 2020, the first full month southern Nevada’s casinos were open since the two-and-a-half month Covid-19 shutdown last spring.

January passenger figures were down from 1.7m in December.

The steep y-o-y drop-off can be partially chalked up to the absence of a physical CES trade show last month. The event, held annually in January, attracts upwards of 150,000 visitors to Las Vegas.

The decline in January air travelers to Las Vegas correlated with a spike in domestic Covid-19 cases. According to the Center for Disease Control Covid Data Tracker, cases peaked on Jan. 8 at more than 314,000.

Since mid-January, US Covid cases have fallen dramatically, down to under 70,000 on Feb. 23. As of Tuesday, Nevada reported a seven-day average of 372 cases, the state’s fewest since late September.

The decline in Covid cases nationally and locally along with growing number of vaccinations could spur optimism for Americans seeking travel.

However, it will be several more months before international travel returns to Las Vegas in numbers anywhere close to pre-pandemic. McCarran recorded just 21,500 international passengers last month, down 93% y-o-y.

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