Travel insights from Southwest Vacations

Interesting Facts about LAS & MCO – SWAV’s Key Success Cities

Here at Southwest Vacations (SWAV), we’re celebrating our 30th birthday, and we want to celebrate it by sharing interesting facts about the two destinations that began SWAV’s success - Las Vegas and Orlando.

Las Vegas, NV (1989)

Las Vegas skyline

One of the most popular places to visit amongst SWAV’s customers, Las Vegas was the very first and only destination SWAV introduced 30 years ago. With SWAV, travelers can enjoy some of the best deals of vacation package featuring Southwest Airlines® flights, a large selection of accommodations, luxurious amenities, relaxing spas, gastronomic delights, fantastic shopping and so many more classic Vegas things to do.

What is there possibly left to learn about popular vacation spot? Well, you may be surprised….

  • It is younger than you think. Las Vegas would not appear on the map until 1905 – when it was founded as a stop on the Union Pacific Railroad. It has done a lot of growing since.
  • Las Vegas welcomed over 42 million visitors last year. 38% of them are millennials. Average age of a visitor is 45.1 years old.
  • There is a black book for people banned from Las Vegas containing the names of some of the most influential and notorious gangsters and individuals. The book is accessible to every gambling premises in the state.
  • There are 147,238 hotel rooms in Las Vegas (2018). It would take about 400 years to spend an evening in each room! Some of the largest hotels in the world are located here.
  • The Strip is actually not in the city of Las Vegas. It is technically just outside the city, the border of which is Sarah Avenue.
  • The lottery is illegal in Nevada, despite being a gambling city!
  • Southwest Airlines® offers the most nonstop flights to Las Vegas than any other domestic carrier with over 1,400 nonstop flights from 60 cities every week.

Orlando, FL (1994)

Family at Disney World

The City of Beautiful became SWAV’s destination in 1994, along with other key destinations in Florida including Tampa and FT. Lauderdale. Thanks to its year-round sunshine, high quality of life, and attractions, Orlando is a destination with so much to offer from entertaining theme parks to acclaimed golf courses, to a wide variety of hotels and resorts. Its incredible diversity ensures an unforgettable vacation filled with unique experiences for every visitor.

Despite its status as a recognizable city, Orlando features many interesting facts that are not so well known:

  • Orlando is home to more than 100 lakes. Lake Eola in downtown Orlando is actually a giant sinkhole and is 80 feet at its deepest point.
  • Motion pictures that were filmed in Orlando include D.A.R.Y.L., Ocean’s Eleven (filmed casino interior and vault at Universal Orlando), Problem Child 2, Jaws 3, My Girl, Parenthood, Lethal Weapon 3, Dead Presidents, The Waterboy, Olive Juice, Monster, and many more.
  • It ranks #5 the most visited destination in the United States.
  • The Morse Museum houses the world’s most comprehensive collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848–1933), including the artist and designer’s jewelry, pottery, paintings, art glass, leaded-glass lamps and windows.
  • Long before tourism, the most popular industries in Central Florida were cattle, cotton and citrus.
  • Gatorland was launched in Orlando in 1949. Its main attractions include a 14-foot gator, and the largest collection of extremely rare white leucitic alligators
  • After including Orlando as a destination, SWAV launched Kids Fly Free promotion with Disneyland Resort in 1998, followed by Friends Fly Free promotion with Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort in 2003.

Did you know:

  • There is no cost to check a bag with Southwest Vacation— that's a savings of between $50 and $70 compared to other airlines.
  • Chicago (Midway) is the US airport with the most Southwest Airlines® daily departures

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