If you’re interested in Grand Canyon helicopters that fly out of Vegas, I recommend taking one of the air-only versions if you’re short on time. They don’t land at the canyon, they just fly over the high points, therefore they are quick tours and less expensive than those that land and include other activities. An air tour departs from Vegas and provides aerial views of Lake Mead, the Grand Canyon, the Colorado River, Grand Cliffs Wash, and the Glass Bridge or Grand Canyon Skywalk.
Although the tour operators refer to the air-only tours as basic tours, they are far from lacking in adventure. They offer fantastic value, particularly the tours that take off from the Vegas Strip.
Air-only tours on Las Vegas Grand Canyon helicopters depart from either the Strip (how cool is that?) or the municipal airfield in Boulder City, Nevada ? a suburb of Sin City that’s a 30-minute shuttle ride away. The Strip flights are the ultimate in convenience. The airfield is only about ten minutes away from most of the big hotels. The tour operator arranges all your transportation needs and will even send a limo to pick you up for the tour. There is nothing better than that!
However, you’ll pay more for the convenience and personal service than you would if you depart from an airfield located off the Strip. For example, tours departing from Boulder City cost less. That’s because getting there is less convenient and you’ll need to take a half-hour shuttle ride to get to the airfield. And because there’s no limo, you won’t get any extra style points. Plus, there are a lot more flights that depart from the Boulder City airfield than take off from the Strip. Since there are more available tour seats, the ticket prices are lower.
However, riding to your helicopter in a limo is certainly a very nice touch. Especially when your Grand Canyon flight is meant to celebrate an anniversary, birthday or other special occasion? It is much more exciting to be chauffeured in a limousine rather than a passenger van.
Even though the Strip departures cost more, they almost always sell out. That’s especially true if you wait too long to lock down your seats. I always recommend booking at least a week in advance, but two weeks ahead is even better. Plus, the price will be lower, it’s like airline tickets that cost more the closer it gets to time to take off.
The tour helicopters are EcoStar 130 choppers. This aircraft is really the only way to go because it’s significantly bigger (and therefore more comfortable) than other helicopter models. The windshield is huge and wraps around the aircraft so everyone gets a good view, plus the seats are arranged theater-style for the ultimate viewing experience.
Las Vegas air tours can be deluxe (Strip takeoff and limo) or basic (Boulder City takeoff and shuttle van). Other than that, the tours are identical. Both types of tours are air-only and use EcoStar 130s. Just remember to book your tour in advance so you can get a seat. Seats on these tours fill up quickly and the tours will be sold out if you delay.