Allegiant Air adds second Las Vegas direct flight ahead of Iowa State vs. UNLV football game

Iowa State fans will turn the heart of Sin City into the Cyclone Strip this fall.

The Big 12 Conference runners-up take on the University of Nevada Las Vegas Rebels on Sept. 18 in their third game of the 2021 season. With so many fans booking direct flights from Des Moines to Las Vegas, Allegiant Air announced Tuesday it is adding a second flight to its direct service that weekend.

Both flights will leave Des Moines International Airport on Sept. 16 and return from Nevada on Sept. 19.

“If (demand) continues we may look at adding some additional frequency that week,” Allegiant Air spokesperson Hillarie Grey said in an email Tuesday.

The company previously advertised a single round trip, leaving Des Moines at 2 p.m.  Sept. 16, a Thursday. Customers would return that Sunday, leaving Las Vegas at 4 p.m. local time.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Allegiant Air allowed customers to choose from 23 open seats on the 2 p.m. flight out of Des Moines. There appeared to be 27 seats open on the flight back from Las Vegas.

The new options announced Tuesday include a flight out of Des Moines at 11 a.m. on Sept. 16, as well as a flight back from Las Vegas at 12:45 p.m. Sunday, local time. 

Southwest Airlines also is running a direct flight between Des Moines and Las Vegas on those days. As of Tuesday afternoon, the company’s website said it had one ticket left, on sale for $630.

The added flights come as fans have high expectations for Iowa State, with college football analysts predicting the team could unseat Oklahoma for its first Big 12 Conference Championship.

Peterson:Think expectations were bold for Iowa State football in 2020? Wait ’til this fall

The Cyclones won the Fiesta Bowl in January and ended the season ranked No. 9 in the Associated Press Top 25 Football Poll. They will return many starters, including quarterback Brock Purdy and AP All-American Breece Hall. 

Tyler Jett covers jobs and the economy for the Des Moines Register. Reach him at tjett@registermedia.com, 515-284-8215, or on Twitter at @LetsJett.