Fresno · Travel

Southwest adds fourth Fresno flight to Vegas

With Las Vegas emerging as the most-popular destination for nonstop flyers departing Fresno-Yosemite International Airport, its newest airline is quadrupling down on Sin City flights.

Tuesday, Southwest Airlines launched a fourth direct flight to Las Vegas from Fresno-Yosemite International Airport for six days out of the week.

Currently, its Saturday service remains a two-flight-per-day offering.

According to U.S. Department of Transportation data, Southwest’s arrival to the Fresno market has translated into eye-popping gains for travel to southern Nevada.

For the first year of the coronavirus pandemic – from April 2020 to May 2021, Fresno-Yosemite recorded 27,500 passengers flying to Las Vegas, almost exclusively via Allegiant Airlines.

Since April 2021, Southwest helped drive traffic to Las Vegas from the Valley floor to 165,000 passengers, eclipsing Fresno’s next-popular nonstop destination – Dallas.

Beyond its increasing presence connecting Valley travelers to Las Vegas, Southwest also offers a once-daily nonstop flight to Denver.

Les Hubbard is a contributing reporter for The San Joaquin Valley Sun.