AC 1851 Flight Report : Toronto - Las Vegas

Scanning around for a low-season getaway, I wasn't so surprised Vegas came up in my search. April is a great time to visit - dry and cooler so it is possible to walk outdoors all day. Prices were attractive even for a direct flight, so I was off to the sin city for some sightseeing. Yes, there is a lot of sightseeing around the Vegas area with many beautiful national parks, and oh yea, some casinos to add to the mix as well.

US flights leave from the end of Terminal 1. The security line was fairly short with multiple lanes working and staff directing people around to ease the crowding. Pre-clearance took some time, as usual, although once it was my turn, I was processed fairly quickly. Being a plebian traveller, this was the most worrisome bottleneck that prevents me from arriving at the airport an hour before my flight with hand-carry only.

First up, plane spotting Air Canada, more Air Canada, and again Air Canada.

Terminal 1 is the Star Alliance hub, with Rouge designed to serve more low-yielding leisure destinations. Scanning the departure boards, there were a sprinkle of departures to Florida and the US southwest.

Air Canada Rouge flies this route using a 767. With a 2-3-2 configuration, I liked it for easy aisle access from my window seat, although it would be an old plane. You can't have too many expectations for a Rouge flight. There is no in-seat entertainment. Instead, download the airline's app to stream content on board. In today's electronic age of smart phones and tablets, this feature is perfectly fine.

But what spoofed me was the vast amount of food debris on the floor wedged between the chair's leg and the fuselage. They clearly didn't clean the plane properly, doing only a superficial job on the obvious areas. I wonder how many flights of food did all this come from?

We departed on-time and roared into the sunny and cold sky for the 4.5-hour flight.

Happily observing the scenery below me, the crew started serving complimentary soft drinks and water. Meals will cost money, but mainline Air Canada also does this for its US flights as well.

As we flew over the middle section of America, the barren landscape started turning interesting. With the snow-capped mountains started coming into view, the flight deck announced we would shortly cross the Rockies and the ride would get bumpy.

With the turbulence calming down, the scenery became quite unique and beautiful. There were dried-out rivers, rocks with the iron-rich fiery appearance, and some greenery here and there.

The greenery would soon be replaced by arid yellow landscapes.

Too bad there is no in-flight location map. I wanted to know if I was near the Grand Canyon.

We landed from the east with the Strip's skyline somewhat visible during final approach despite coming in perpendicular to it. The casinos in the skyline are just a short distance from the airport. My hotel would only be a 20-minute bus ride away.

Too bad I was behind the wing, so the great views were partially obstructed.

As the plane taxied into the terminal I scanned through the pocket for the old safety card.

Air Canada uses the newer-looking Terminal 3. Arrivals are a bit confusing. You head downstairs to find 2 train lines. 1 goes to Terminal 1 arrivals, and the other goes to Terminal 3 arrivals. With only hand-carry luggage, you can go for either train, but keep in mind the public buses don't always stop at both terminals. For the northern strip, the 108 only stops at Terminal 1, the CX only stops at Terminal 3, while the WAX serves both.

To keep you busy while waiting for your checked bags, there are plenty of slots next to the carousel to you lose your first fortune in Vegas.

Terminal 1's public bus stop is on level 0, 1 level below the baggage carousel. The ticket machine sells day passes and takes credit cards. Alternatively, you can download the RTC app and buy the pass with your mobile. Scanners for mobile tickets are on the left side when you board.

Air Canada Rouge isn't a scary airline even though it seems more bare bones than the mainline, although the mainline doesn't offer much to begin with anyway. I guess with no expectations, there won't be disappointment. Flying within North America only needs to be punctual and safe.

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