A passenger traffic record was set in July by Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport, as the main airport for public and military use in the Las Vegas Valley saw a whopping 4.5 million people fly in and out of its terminal last month.
It is the second time the Clark County-owned airport saw in excess of 4.5 million passengers in a single month, according to a recent announcement from the Clark County Department of Aviation, operator of the airport.
The previous all-time monthly record was set in August 2007 at 4.3 million.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that July’s total is a 2 percent swell compared with the 4.4 million passengers from the same time last year and brings this year’s total to 29.8 million passengers. That is a 3 percent bump over January through July 2018.
According to the news agency citing the Clark County Department of Aviation (pdf), the largest year-over-year increase was seen by Frontier Airlines. The Denver, Colorado-headquartered carrier saw a 37 percent surge, with July’s passenger count at 263,290, up from the previous year’s July passenger count of 191,682. The airline’s parent company is Arizona-based Indigo Partners, LLC, a private equity firm, that also has a controlling interest in Chilean low-cost start-up JetSmart.
Also seeing a significant swell compared with July 2018 was ultra-low-cost carrier headquartered in Florida, Spirit Airlines. The seventh-largest commercial airline in the United States reportedly saw 507,147 passengers, which represents a 32.1 percent boost.
The airline, which in addition to Las Vegas, operates bases at Atlantic City, Chicago–O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Detroit, Fort Lauderdale, and Orlando, is up 24.6 percent year-to-date, having already seen 2.9 million passengers this year.
Meanwhile, McCarran’s busiest carrier by volume, Southwest Airlines, did not see an uptick, with its passenger count dipping in July, having served 1.5 million people. a 7.8 percent decline over the 1.6 million passengers from the same time last year. For the year, the Dallas, Texas-headquartered carrier is down 2.1 percent, seeing 10.4 million passengers through the month of July.
Boeing 737 MAX crashes:
The Review-Journal reports that according to Southwest spokesman, Dan Landson, the substantial dip is credited to the airline in mid-March having grounded its Boeing 737 MAX jets after two fatal crashes – a Lion Air flight in Indonesia in October and an Ethiopian Airlines flight in Ethiopia in March – killed all 346 people who were aboard the flights.
CNBC reports that the largest 737 Max customer in the U.S.[Southwest Airlines], removed the planes from its schedules until early January.
Also seeing its passenger count drop in July, Fort Worth, Texas-headquartered American Airlines saw 381,737 people, a 6.4 percent downturn compared with last year July’s 407,898 passengers.
According to CNBC, the 83-year-old airline is pulling the Boeing 737 Max from its schedules until early December and expects to cancel approximately 140 flights a day in November all the way through December 3. The max grounding is now in its sixth month.
Nearly 50 percent of all visitors to Sin City come through McCarran International Airport, according to the Clark County Department Of Aviation.