Harry Reid Airport Sees Numerous Canceled, Delayed Flights Days Before Christmas

Pre-Christmas travelers flying to or from Las Vegas are finding many flights on Thursday and Friday are canceled or delayed. The cause is a winter storm impacting the Midwest and other parts of the US during the busy travel period.

Harry Reid International Airport
Harry Reid International Airport
Harry Reid International Airport, pictured above. Many delays and cancelations are being seen at the Las Vegas airport. (Image: The Nevada Independent)

As of 3 pm PT, 70 flights at Harry Reid International Airport on Thursday were cancelled, according to FlightAware, a national online flight tracking service. In addition, 360 flights at Harry Reid were delayed as of Thursday late afternoon. The flight interruptions could impact casino-bound travelers.

It would be fair to say that more delays and cancellations are anticipated as this winter storm continues to move through the country,” Joe Rajchel, a spokesman for Harry Reid Airport told Casino.org on Thursday afternoon.

He added that travelers should check on the status of their flight with their airline prior to arriving at the airport.

“A lot of the airlines have been proactive in talking about the winter storms and have their own methods for customers to reach out regarding rebooking or other accommodations,” Rajchel said.

Also, travelers should have essentials on hand such as snacks, childcare items, medication, and chargers, he added.

Given the conditions, those travelers heading to Harry Reid should arrive at the airport at least two hours before the take-off time. The airport also warned passengers to expect large crowds in terminals, heavy traffic on airport roads and parking areas to be busy.


National Situation

Over 2,250 flights were canceled nationwide on Thursday due to the inclement weather, CNN reported. An additional 1,800 or more flights nationally scheduled for Friday were canceled. As of late afternoon on Thursday, more than 7,200 US flights were delayed.

Denver and Chicago were among the airports hardest hit by the weather-related delays or cancelations.

Rain, snow, ice, freezing fog, and winds were the reasons for the impacted travel, CNN said.

Nationally, some 54 million passengers are expected to fly between last Sunday and January 3, Hopper.com, a provider of a popular travel app, reported. That number is 20% higher than the same period last Christmas season.

Also, Thursday and Friday of this week are likely to be the busiest travel days during the holidays. Some 3.34 million passengers across the US are scheduled to depart each day, Hopper.com said.

Weather Outlook

As of Thursday, at least five people died in US motor vehicle accidents during the treacherous weather, AccuWeather reported. Also, several governors declared states of emergency in their states.

Conditions were made more difficult due to thousands of weather-related power outages in the US. Texas had the most power outages as of Thursday afternoon, with over 39,000 customers in the state having lost electricity.

Extremely cold weather is predicted for Friday in New York and much of the rest of the Northeast and Midwest. Also, winds are expected to guest to 70 mph in some locations.

But seasonal, sunny conditions are predicted for the next several days in Las Vegas.

Recommendations for Travelers

The AAA region which serves Las Vegas further told Casino.org there are some steps travelers can take given the delays and cancellations.

These include check the airline’s website or app to stay up-to-date on flight status. Also, make a final check before leaving for the airport.

Perhaps buy flight insurance. But be aware what it covers.

Also, consider booking flights with a travel advisor. Such a specialist can help if flights are delayed or canceled.

Include medications, snacks, and change of clothes in a carry-on bag as a precaution if a flight is canceled after checking baggage at the airport.

Also, passengers are entitled to a refund when an airline cancels their flight.

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