WATCH: Crazy Weekend For Airports in Las Vegas
Photo via Twitter
Big-time fights in Las Vegas tend to bring out all kinds, from the ultra-whales – the nickname given to high rollers who frequent Vegas casinos – to the hanger-ons just looking to get any piece of the action.
Saturday’s welterweight title fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao, billed as the richest fight ever, was no exception.
And the trickle-down effect reached all the way to Las Vegas airports.
In a photo that went viral and was quickly and sarcastically dubbed #FirstWorldProblems on social media, a plethora of private jets were parked wing to wing near the private plane terminal at McCarran International Airport, forcing the facility to reach capacity and force private planes to an outlying airport in nearby Henderson, Nevada.
McCarran was also overhwhelmed by commercial flights, as expected, both domestic and international. McCarran spokeswoman Christine Crews told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that commercial, on average, fill 87 percent of their available seats to capacity en route to Las Vegas. Through Saturday, the day of the fight, scheduled flights were overbooked.
“Airlines at really high load factors are using higher capacity aircrafts than usual,” Crews told the paper. “We do expect this to be a very busy weekend.”
So much so, in fact, that McCarran Airport then put the word out on Sunday and today to passengers leaving Las Vegas – this isn’t the day to be late.
With so many commercial outbound flights and with having to get all those private jets back out and into the air, Las Vegas airspace was expected to be jam-packed.
Of course, all that didn’t stop one man from stealing a plane. Evan Grant, 27, a former student pilot who trained at North Las Vegas Airport, stole a small plane from the airport on Saturday morning and took it for a one-hour joyride until he was talked down by an air traffic controller.
Grant was arrested and booked on a charge of grand larceny.
More by Rich Thomaselli
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