Thanksgiving in Las Vegas

Nevada is gearing up for this year’s Thanksgiving festivities, with locals flocking to markets and shops ahead of Thanksgiving night, and out-of-towners coming in via the I-15 and McCarran International on their way to their reserved hotel spots. Many locals expect this weekend to be the same as other typical Thanksgiving weekends.

Recent reports and projections concerning Thanksgiving in Las Vegas are giving a different story from the usual, however. Holiday experts predict that Las Vegas will be the top destination for out-of-town Thanksgiving celebrants this year, and local establishments are gearing up for a busier holiday weekend than before.

Everyone’s Flocking

Travel experts at AAA predict Las Vegas will be one, if not the top vacation destination for people looking to spend Thanksgiving away from home. Recent figures project that there will be twice the average number of people plying through the city and most of Southern Nevada for the weekend, a significant number considering how heavy normal traffic can be in the area. In addition, at least 1.2 million people are expected to travel through McCarran International for the duration of the holiday week, an equally significant jump in figures from last year’s records.

Las Vegas is no longer just a go-to city for night spots, casinos and bars anymore. In recent years, many of the notable establishments and hotels within the city have started to set up features and attractions that cater to the family as a whole. Theme park-like features and family packages have become a new selling point to these locations, and that comes with seasonal events that are marketed towards family gatherings as well.

Things Looking Up

Local and national travel and vacation experts have been abuzz with activity concerning the noticeable jump in visitors to Las Vegas for Thanksgiving. AAA Nevada Spokeswoman Cynthia Harris notes economic improvements and increasing consumer confidence as two of the driving points behind the increased spending for the holidays in the city. This is easily reflected by occupancy projections for both hotel rooms and parking, with over 92% of all rooms expected to be occupied until Sunday.

The large capacity of vacationers is expected to bring in a huge influx of income for the local businesses. Financial experts are predicting out-of-towners will be spending over $200 million on food, casinos and services for the duration of the holiday, not to mention additional store sales due to Black Friday.

A Night Dining Out on the Town

Many of Las Vegas’ most prominent casinos and restaurants are gearing up for the influx of patrons as well. Notable hotels like Mandalay Bay, Aliante, The Orleans and The Venetian are offering high-end Thanksgiving menus exclusive for Thanksgiving dinner only. These offerings are expected to be some of the topsellers for these restaurants during the holiday.

Other local dining establishments are also offering holiday menus for the whole week. Restaurants in Henderson and Summerlin, for instance, are advertising unique takes on Thanksgiving classics to attract local and visiting customers.

Thanksgiving this year is expected to be hectic with more out-of-towners than usual. Crime rates and arrests are also predicted to go up during the holidays, however, and local criminal defense lawyers will be ready to receive calls for tourists who may face charges during Thanksgiving.