How does one put the Grand Canyon into perspective? Take an airplane ride. These air tours show in an hour what would take days on the ground. Its what makes them in-demand and it’s why I highly recommend you buy your seats ahead of time. Listed below are five more reasons you ought to RSVP:
1. Guarantees you fly the day that’s best for your needs. These trips are extremely popular. Each airplane holds 19 people. More often than not, they fill up with charters and groups. Pre-book early and avoid getting bumped.
2. Allows you to lock down the most ideal flight times. Travelers line up for morning and sunset trips. No surprise, either: The best visibility is in the am, and sundown rides are beyond spectacular.
3. Offers you more re-scheduling flexibility. Sometimes the weather at the canyon can shift and flights need to be detained. If this happens to you as a morning departure, relax. You will end up the first to go once the clouds clear.
4. Offers you peace of mind. I don’t know about you but the last thing I want to do is make travel arrangements when I’m there. I’d rather be out walking the Rim Trail or staring at The Bellagio Fountains than wrangling with a ticket broker.
5. Saves serious cash. The national park has its share of high season travel months. This means prices increase. Buy before these travel surges and you secure a lowercharge that can’t be hiked up. Also, booking at the air terminal or The Vegas Strip will cost you more. Lots more.
There’s two main places in the Canyon to which airplanes fly: The West Rim and the South Rim. For Vegas visitors, the West Rim is the obvious choice as it’s just 120 miles away (there’s a Vegas to South Rim flight but more on that later). South Rim trips depart from Grand Canyon Airport, located minutes away from the Park’s main gate.
The fantastic thing about West Rim air tours is the side trips. Yes, you can find air-only flights, but if you really want to gain access to the canyon’s mojo, you can expand your package to include Grand Canyon Glass Walkway tickets, a guided tour of the West Rim, a helicopter descent to the floor, or a boat ride on the Colorado.
At the South Rim, there’s a fantastic 50-minute flight that includes the South, East, and North Rims. The main add-on is the 1-day no-rapids float trip. This journey takes off from Tusayan and lands near Glen Canyon Dam, the place to start for pontoon boat trips down the River.
The Vegas to South Rim flight takes 45 minutes. It follows the Colorado River from Las Vegas to the South Rim. Upon landing, you transfer to a luxury coach and go into the park. There’s ample time to explore and all the most important view points are included. There is also an option to add a helicopter ride.
All canyon air trips are all-inclusive and come with free hotel shuttle service, lunch, and side-trip transportation. Departures are throughout the year (the South Rim smooth-water raft tour is seasonal and goes from April to November). Incredibly, these are 1-day excursions, which means you will be back in time for your evening plans.
Travelers are really catching on to the benefits of taking a canyon air tour, especially people who want to spend just 1 or 2 days at the canyon. The popularity of these flights, however, means more sold out flights. This can be avoided if you purchase your air tickets before hand. You will not only save yourself money, but also you’ll be assured of getting a seat. Take some time to RSVP. Then kick back and relish the best ride the canyon has to offer.
Mr. Kravitz is a travel writer who reviews tours to the Grand Canyon. His Top 3 Grand Canyon airplane tours are posted here. These flights are handpicked based on saftey, price, and quality.