LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Casino owner Derek Stevens of "The D" and the Golden Gate casino wants people to return to Las Vegas, and he's helping people get here by giving away free flights.
"Vegas needs these tourists. We want people to come back," Stevens said, sitting down with to FOX5's Jaclyn Schultz to explain the plan to kick off the reopening of gaming establishments, revive Downtown and show visitors how his casinos will reopen safely.
Governor Steve Sisolak allowed casinos to reopen June 4, and promised out-of-town tourists would be welcome by then.
Stevens announced Wednesday morning that he is giving away 1,000 one-way flights to Las Vegas from more than 20 major U.S. cities. But it didn't stop there.
Less than two hours after announcing the giveaway, Stevens' "Keep America Flying" promotion officially booked every flight offered. As a result, "given the demand and Stevens' intent to fuel Las Vegas tourism and reignite the airline industry," the casino owner added nearly 700 additional flights, for a total of 1,700 trips all together, a release said.
Wasn’t planning a #Phase2. Excited to see huge demand for #Vegas #MoreCities— Derek Stevens (@DerekJStevens) May 27, 2020
GRR OAK BUF SAT STL MCI TPA MCO BOS
@GoldenGateVegas @theDlasvegas @CircaLasVegas @CircaSports @LVCVA @FSELV #KeepAmericaFlying#KeepLasVegasRolling pic.twitter.com/1051SHh2GR
According to a news release, "Stevens' 'Keep America Flying' promotion is intended to help stimulate the tourism and airline industries while reminding the country of the fun to be had in Las Vegas."
The deal came with no strings attached.
A video posted on social media explained the promotion.
"Obviously, my team and I would like you to stay at one of our hotels. But if you don't, that's alright too, because Las Vegas needs you. Our community needs you. We're just trying to do our share. Keep America flying, keep Las Vegas rolling," Stevens said in the video.
Stevens owns The D, the Golden Gate and Circa Las Vegas, which is expected to be completed later this year.
He showed FOX5 the new changes at his properties: spacing of chairs between slot machines, hand sanitizing stations, and the addition of 17 thermal sensors around his properties to screen guests' temperatures.
"We have seen other jurisdictions open. I think Las Vegas has learned from that. i think las vegas is ready," he said.
The D and the Golden Gate will reopen June 4.
Visit https://www.thed.com/Keep-America-Flying/ for a list of offered origin cities and more information. All participants in the "Keep America Flying" promotion must be at least 21 years of age, the release said.