Las Vegas is increasing the number of international gates at McCarran International Airport (LAS) to accommodate what it hopes will become an Asian travel boon. The city is actively trying to attract more Asian travelers to the destination, opening a slew of new hotels specifically designed to cater to the Asian market.

Many transatlantic flights occur on wide body, double-decker Airbus A380 aircraft, which requires larger gates. Singapore Airlines and Malaysia Airlines routinely employ this variety of aircraft on flights from Asia to the United States. At least one of the new gates at McCarran International Airport will be designed to accommodate the jumbo-sized A380 jet.

Construction to Begin Soon

The Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee, which is appointed by the governor, decides which travel-related projects to fund. At a recent committee meeting, McCarran International Airport Director Rosemary Vassiliadis announced that construction of seven international gates would begin by the end of this year.

The Associated Press reports that design and construction of the additional gates at McCarran International Airport is expected to cost $51 million. The project is expected to be completed by late 2016 or early 2017.

Boosting Foreign Travel

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority is very interested in boosting international travel to the destination, and is especially interested in attracting Chinese travelers. Last year, it reports that foreigners accounted for 19 percent of the more than 40 million people who visited the city last year.

Currently there are no direct flights from China to Las Vegas, but it is hoped that this new airport construction project at McCarran International Airport will change that.