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Best of Dan Ippolito

Gaming Guru

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Las Vegas casino owner ups the ante by giving away 1,700 free flights

29 May 2020

Downtown Las Vegas CEO and developer Derek Stevens made a big announcement on Wednesday morning saying he would give away 1,000 free one-way flights to Las Vegas from 20 major U.S. cities.

As part of the free flight, there was no stipulation that people taking advantage would have to stay or even visit the two Downtown Las Vegas properties owned by Stevens -- Golden Gate Hotel & Casino and The D Las Vegas – both of which are scheduled to reopen next week, along with many other Las Vegas casinos.

“Obviously, my team and I would like you to stay at one of our hotels,” Stevens explained in a video promoting the giveaway. “But if you don’t, that’s all right, too. Because Las Vegas needs you. Our community needs you. We’re just trying to do our share, keep America flying and keep Las Vegas rolling.”



Little did Stevens know that the demand for these flights would explode. The “Keep America Flying”promotion saw the first 1,000 flights gone within the first two hours.

After the initial 1,000 flights were scooped up, Stevens got back into talks with some of the airlines and decided to add more flights and cities. Some of the cities added to the second round of flights included New York, Boston, Tampa and Orlando.

Stevens and his team decided to tack on an additional 700 flights, bringing the total amount of free flights to 1,700 one-way tickets.

Flight recipients are responsible for return flights, hotel accommodations and all additional costs associated with their stay, including cancellations and/or rescheduling.

Participating airlines in the “Keep America Flying” promotion included Allegiant, Frontier Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines and Sun Country Airlines.

"As we begin to reopen our doors across the city, we are proud to help reinvigorate travel to Las Vegas while supporting airlines in America impacted by the COVID-19 crisis," said Stevens in a press release (LINK TO THE PRESS RELEASE). "We can't wait to safely bring visitors to the city and remind them why we've earned the title of 'Entertainment Capital of the World.’”

Stevens also spoke on the development of his plans with his brother Greg for Circa Resort & Casino coming to Downtown Las Vegas. Derek Stevens told News 3 Las Vegas that the 777-room property will have the largest sportsbook screen in the world and it's still on track to be completed by the end of the year.

Construction is still underway on the 1.25-million-square-foot property, which will punctuate the Las Vegas skyline as the tallest tower north of the Strip.
Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports. Email him at daniel@casinocity.com, or follow him at @casinocity_dan on Twitter.
Dan Ippolito
As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports. Email him at daniel@casinocity.com, or follow him at @casinocity_dan on Twitter.