How to get to Las Vegas Airport by Train

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Las Vegas International Airport Train Transfers

McCarran International airport has been providing passengers who arrives and departs from the airport with all the possible convenience it can give. The construction of the McCarran Rent-A-Car building is a proof of the airports personnel concern to the passengers. The McCarran airport which is located near the Las Vegas Strip, serves more than 49 million passengers all year round that require transportation services.

Means of transportation in Las Vegas airport consists of buses, limos, taxis, rental cars, and the Las Vegas airport trains. The airport personnel allocated a space where these transportation vehicles can be found. Most are assigned to a designated parking space within the airport vicinity, while passengers who liked to rent a car are transported to the McCarran Rent-A-Car building.

Recently, McCarran International airport and the Las Vegas Monorail planned the extension of the Las Vegas trains to the airport. This is to provide additional services to the passengers who would like to have an immediate access to the city. Yet, the expansion was strongly opposed by the limousines and taxi operators who had been earning significant revenues in transporting the passengers from the airport.

This would be Las Vegas airport train was referred to before as MGM Grand-Bally’s Monorail before it was named Las Vegas Monorail. The train runs within a 6.3 km monorail or 3.9 mile. It is located on Las Vegas Strip at Clark County Nevada. The Las Vegas airport train connects Winchester and Paradise communities and technically do not enter Las Vegas. It is operated and owned by Las Vegas Monorail Company. Also, it is registered as a non-profit corporation which is basically allowed within Nevada for companies providing public services.

The state of Nevada provides bond financing for the Las Vegas Monorail Company, otherwise the company did not use any public fund in the construction of the railway.

The would be line of Las Vegas airport trains is to be built by the Bombardier Transportation through the existing free monorail that goes along Bally’s and MGM Grand. This closes the gap to the Strip, the area in Las Vegas where tourists usually travel by foot.

After suffering from a number of delays and setbacks, the first of LAS airport trains, of Phase 1 were completed and was opened last July 15, 2004 to the public. While undergoing the commissioning and testing period, the train suffered from another series of problems in malfunctions that delayed the service to the passengers for a year. Among the most serious problems encountered by the train was the falling off of train parts towards the ground beneath the tracks.

By September 8, 2004 the monorail have to deal with growing numbers of falling parts. This led to the temporary closure of the monorail that lasted for four months. It reopened on December 4, 2004, after a number of repairs done in the monorail cars. The monorail needs to undergo the ‘commissioning’ process every time it requires major engineering changes. It was reported that each day the monorail is down, it approximately costs $85,000 and more than $8.3 million when it is shut down for repairs.

In January 2005 the Transit Systems Management personnel reported that the monorail can already handle a major convention after it handled transportation for the Consumer Electronics Show in the same month. Yet by February of that same year, the monorail had to be shut down again due to electrical problems. It needs to undergo a replacement process for a 30-foot or 9.1 m area in the power rail. Luckily, the system has been restored and reopened after 12 hours.

In July 8, 2005 the Transit Systems Management made a public announcement that it will be turning over the responsibilities to its system operator, the Las Vegas Monorail Company. The monorail undergoes expansion by November 2005. Eventually, it has increased its revenues by 16 percent in April 2006 and passenger patronage also increased.

The Phase 1 of the LAS airport trains starts from the MGM Grand Hotel by The Strip south end that goes parallel on the eastern part of The Strip. The Las Vegas train passes next with the Convention Center then to the Las Vegas Hilton stations prior to its ending on the Sahara Hotel by the north end part of The Strip. Basically, the ride is about 15 minutes covering 3.9 miles.

Generally, the train runs behind the east part of the Strip side casinos and hotels, which is technically a long block away of the Strip. Thus, tourist and passengers will be required to walk by the casino to reach the strip. The direct access on The Strip together with ticket prices becomes a factor with the monorail’s slow acceptance.

The Las Vegas Monorail has seven stations that include the following:

  • Las Vegas Hilton Station
  • Sahara Station
  • Las Vegas Convention Center Station
  • Flamingo/Caesar’s Station
  • Harrah’s/Imperial Palace Station
  • MGM Grand Station
  • Bally’s/Paris Las Vegas Station

There are four cars in each of the nine trains called Bombardier MVI that the monorail uses in its daily operations. These are fully automatic trains. Its guide way is based on the ALWEG standard track which runs within MGM and Bally’s Station on the first seven years of its operation. The maximum speed reaches 50 miles per hour. Every train is available for branding and advertising opportunities which the system gets to earn additional revenue.

The ticket costs $5 for a single ride. If one wants an unlimited day pass good for twenty four hours, the ticket will cost $12. If a person then wants an unlimited three day pass it will cost them $28. Meanwhile, the prices on monorail stations can differ, while Nevada residents is given a $1 discount price for every 2 single ride tickets each day. Yet, these are available on Sahara and MGM Grand Stations service booths only.

The operation hours of Las Vegas Monorail Transit are from 7 am to 2 am on Mondays to Thursdays and 7 am to 3 am on Fridays and Sundays.

The Phase 2 of the monorail was revised from its original plan to extend it on the opposite direction. Instead, phase 2 shall be extended from the MGM Grand Station towards the McCarran International Airport. While it is unpopular to taxis and limos operators, the hotel and casino owners on other hand had been expressing support for the plan compare to an extension that will run towards the downtown area of Las Vegas.