Edelweiss Air to add third Zurich-Las Vegas flight

Edelweiss Air, the Lufthansa Group airline subsidiary that flies nonstop between Zurich and Las Vegas twice a week and has brought 14,000 passengers to the city since the route was launched on May 5, is adding a third flight next year.

Officials with McCarran International Airport and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority were told Monday that the third flight would begin operating in June.

The announcement was made in Chicago at the World Routes Conference, an annual event bringing airline and airport executives together that last year was staged in Las Vegas.

“Given the great success of our nonstop flights between Las Vegas and Zurich, we have decided to add a third weekly flight as of June 2015,” said Alain Chisari, Edelweiss’ chief commercial officer.

The Convention and Visitors Authority estimates Edelweiss’ 2015 flights will generate an estimated $27 million in nongaming economic impact.

McCarran and authority officials said they had no doubt the route would be successful because of Switzerland’s extensive rail network that eases travel from Zurich International Airport in Kroten and broadens the market.

When Edelweiss adds the flight in June, it will modify its schedule. Flights between Zurich and Las Vegas will operate Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Currently, the airline operates Mondays and Fridays.

Edelweiss, a sister company to Swiss International Air Lines, flies a 285-seat Airbus A330 aircraft on the route. The airline recently acquired an upgraded model of the aircraft that has a business class equipped with fully lie-flat seats and a new in-flight entertainment system. The airline serves 45 destinations in 28 nations worldwide.

Edelweiss is expected to scale back its winter schedule to Las Vegas to one flight a week. Tourism officials view the seasonal reduction positively since most small carriers eliminate all flights for months at a time.

Contact reporter Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on Twitter.

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