Weather Woes in Las Vegas: Heat Waves Disrupt Private Jet Takeoffs

We expect weather delays due to heavy snow, fog, or even severe rain – but what about extreme heat?

This is often the case during the summer months in Las Vegas, Nevada. The dry, desert heat can result in such a dramatic heat wave as to be dangerous for private jet takeoffs and landings at McCarran International Airport.

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We take a look at how heat affects private jet flights and what can be done to mitigate these risks.

With any private jet charter questions, feel free to contact us online or call our 24/7 expert flight team at (866) 726-1222.

How Does Heat Affect Aircraft?

The main dangers have to do with a basic physics property: heat expansion.

As heat increases, fuel in the tanks of aircraft expand, leading to potential leakage and even combustion.

The aircraft performance is also hindered as air temperatures increase; as air becomes thinner or less dense, an aircraft filled with cargo and passengers will struggle to take off due to less-mass air flow and less lift generated beneath the wings.

So How Hot is Too Hot?

Generally, at or around 100°F is considered dangerous, though many airlines won’t begin delaying or cancelling flights until temperatures reach 110°F.

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The record highest temperature recorded in Las Vegas was 117°F, in 2013.

Does a Heat Wave Also Affect Private Jets?

In short, yes.

Private jets are also susceptible to the laws of physics! However, private jets have the added flexibility to change schedule more rapidly to fit the weather on an hour-by-hour basis.

Turboprop aircraft struggle more than jets, due to the propellers requiring more air to compensate for the less-dense air coming through. In short, turboprops have to work twice as hard for half the payoff.

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However, both turboprop and jet aircraft will avoid taking off or landing in extreme-heat situations.

How to Combat Heat Waves When Flying In or Out of Las Vegas

Consider avoiding the peak heat hours of the day for your flight. Arriving or departing in the early morning or late evening can help your aircraft fly as safely as possible.

Also consider your luggage requirements; extra weight on the aircraft might play a role in your flight.

PrivateFly ensures the highest safety standards for all our aircraft, so while heat waves may affect charter flights, there is certainly no reason to ever doubt your safety on board.


Our 24/7 Flight Team can answer any questions regarding weather issues for your private jet flight.

For private jet charter pricing or advice, contact us online or call us at (866) 726-1222 (24 hrs).