LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The airport servicing one of the busiest travel destinations in the United States continues to see passenger volume grow as the economy recovers, and now federal authorities are asking for people to apply for several open TSA security officer positions.
Authorities for McCarran International Airport say passenger traffic has grown rapidly since February 2021.
"It’s gotten busier and busier here as the months of gone by," said Joe Rajchel with McCarran Airport.
"From February to April we saw a large increase, in February we served 1.5 million passengers," he said.
In April 2021, 2.9 million passengers passed through the Las Vegas airport.
"People are coming. Airlines are adjusting their schedules to where people want to go and right now, that's Las Vegas," added Rajchel.
The steady increase followed months of stunning declines as Las Vegas shut down to weather the pandemic's wrath.
Still, some parts have not recovered, including most of the convention travelers as well as international visitors.
"There are no flights occurring at [Terminal 3] currently," said Rajchel.
"Some airlines operate ticketing and baggage claim out of T3, the building itself is open," he said, "but the E concourse and the E gates that normally would service international flights are not being utilized.."
International travel restrictions stemming from COVID-19 mitigation efforts remain in place.
The consolidation of operations, for now, is beneficial for the airport and passengers.
“With the current volume that we have, we are able to utilize the other gates and that helps us with cost containment with keeping resources toward those gates where people are traveling," said Rajchel. "We're continuing to monitor that situation we are ready when it's time to reopen."
The boost in business means other parts of the airport travel process are working to keep up.
The Transportation Security Administration has announced eligible new hire security screen officers will receive a $1,000 recruitment incentive.
The TSA has both full and part-time positions available which start at $16.75 per hour.
New officers receive $500 upon starting and $500 additional dollars after one year of service with the TSA.
“We have worked closely together, TSA and the airport, to make sure we are ready to receive whoever wants to come to Las Vegas we're open, said TSA Federal Security Director for Nevada Karen Burke.
"We can handle it and we look forward to that," she said.
Rajchel suggests arriving at least 2 hours before a scheduled flight and expect longer waits, especially during peak times on the weekends.