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Private Planes Flock to Arizona for Super Bowl, Phoenix Open

  • Phoenix airports will see over 4,000 more take-offs and landings than usual.
  • There are 1,000 private jets and 1,100 aircraft parked around the area.
Photo by Mason Burgin.

The combination of the Super Bowl and the Phoenix Open patrons isn’t just causing major upheaval to the region on the ground — it’s also causing traffic in the air with a high volume of private planes.

Throughout the week, metro Phoenix airports will see over 4,000 more take-offs and landings than usual, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

There are 1,000 private jets and 1,100 aircraft parked around the area. 

The Jackson Jet Center anticipates a takeoff once every six minutes the day after Super Bowl 57 concludes, which is more than it has ever experienced.

The trend isn’t new — after Super Bowl 56 concluded in Los Angeles last year, more than 140 private jets took off within four hours of the confetti falling.

The FAA has specific regulations for handling planes taking off and landing around the game to accommodate the massive influx of private flights. 

Private planes, for example, must submit flight plans four hours before taking off. But some pilots reportedly began submitting their plans weeks ago.

Meanwhile, Las Vegas area officials are taking notes as the city prepares to host next year’s Super Bowl.

Clark County Commissioner Michael Naft, who also serves as co-chair of the Las Vegas Super Bowl Committee’s transportation committee, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal they expect more air traffic than the Phoenix area had due to the historic nature of next year’s big game.

“I think you’ll see even more than that,” Naft said. “I expect that to be maximized. I had discussions with DOA about this topic. They’ve given me assurances that everything that can be done to prepare for it is being done. That includes things like we just opened the expanded surface lot in Henderson (Executive Airport). That’s going to be really well utilized. As will the expanded surface lot at Reid International, will be operational this year.”