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Southwest Time Zones

Southwest Time Zones

Travel in the Southwest can be tricky if you are needing to be somewhere at a specific time. Why? Because several bordering states are in different time zones and some don’t observe Daylight Savings Time.

When I visit Laughlin, Nevada it can be tricky as my phone doesn’t always switch to the right time when crossing from Arizona to Nevada and vice versa (same for Utah).

This is something to consider if you are exploring the Arizona, Nevada, and Utah borders as one day of outdoor play put me in different time zones and I am constantly checking Google asking “What time is it in ____” to know what the correct time is.

Below are the time zones for the Southwest.

Southwest Time Zones

Arizona Time Zone

Arizona is in the Mountain Time Zone and does not observe daylight saving time except for the Navajo Nation. The Navajo Nation does observe daylight saving time.

  • Mountain Standard Time – is abbreviated as MST
  • Mountain Daylight Time – is abbreviated as MDT
  • Arizona is GMT/UTC – 7h during Standard Time Year
  • Navajo Nation is GMT/UTC – 6h during Daylight Saving Time

Click here to view our articles on What to do in Arizona.

California Time Zone

California shares its time zone and DST schedule with bordering states Oregon and Nevada. Meanwhile, most of Arizona, which also shares a border with California, is on Mountain Standard Time (MST) all year. California does utilize Daylight Saving Time.

  • Pacific Standard Time – is abbreviated as PST
  • Pacific Daylight Time – is abbreviated as PDT
  • California is GMT/UTC – 8h during Standard Time
  • California is GMT/UTC – 7h during Daylight Saving Time

Colorado Time Zone

Colorado is officially in the Mountain Time Zone. Colorado does utilize Daylight Saving Time.

  • Mountain Standard Time – is abbreviated as MST
  • Mountain Daylight Time – is abbreviated as MDT
  • Colorado is GMT/UTC – 7h during Standard Time
  • Colorado is GMT/UTC – 6h during Daylight Saving Time

Nevada Time Zone

Nevada is officially in the Pacific Time Zone. Nevada does utilize Daylight Saving Time. With the time and season changes it makes it takes a little planning to avoid the heat in the summer for those who are interested in doing outdoor activities.

  • Pacific Standard Time – is abbreviated as PST
  • Pacific Daylight Time – is abbreviated as PDT
  • Nevada is GMT/UTC – 8h during Standard Time
  • Nevada is GMT/UTC – 7h during Daylight Saving Time

For those who hike, Red Rock heats up fast so most hikers will go early in the morning, later in the day, or head to Mt. Charleston to hike.

When the weather cools down to hit the rocks at Red Rock, unfortunately, the sun goes down early (around 4:30ish) so most hiking is done during the morning.

If you are in Nevada and traveling to either Utah or Arizona, be aware of the following:

  • There will be a time change for Utah since they are located in the Mountain Time Zone, which means the time will be an hour ahead while you are in Utah.
  • Arizona does not observe the time change so depending on what time of year it is the time will be the same as Nevada or an hour different. (Always fun when going back and forth from Laughlin, NV to Bullhead, AZ and back to Laughlin.)

Exceptions: The city of West Wendover officially observes the Mountain Time Zone. The four communities of Jackpot, Owyhee, Mountain City, and Jarbidge near the Idaho border are officially in the Pacific Time Zone but unofficially observe the Mountain Time Zone.

Las Vegas Time Zone

Las Vegas observes Daylight Savings Time and will fall into either the Pacific Standard Time or Pacific Daylight Time zone. 

What Time is it in Las Vegas

Click here to view a website that will give you the current time in Las Vegas, sunrise time, sunset time, and more.

Click here to view our articles on What to do in Nevada.

Las Vegas Time Zone

New Mexico Time Zone

New Mexico is officially in the Mountain Time Zone. New Mexico does utilize Daylight Saving Time.

  • Mountain Standard Time – is abbreviated as MST
  • Mountain Daylight Time – is abbreviated as MDT
  • New Mexico is GMT/UTC – 7h during Standard Time
  • New Mexico is GMT/UTC – 6h during Daylight Saving Time

Utah Time Zone

Utah is officially in the Mountain Time Zone. Utah does utilize Daylight Saving Time.

  • Mountain Standard Time – is abbreviated as MST
  • Mountain Daylight Time – is abbreviated as MDT
  • Utah is GMT/UTC – 7h during Standard Time
  • Utah is GMT/UTC – 6h during Daylight Saving Time

View our article on What to do in Utah.

Pacific Time Zone Abbreviation

The abbreviations commonly used are:

  • PDT – Pacific Daylight Time
  • PST – Pacific Standard Time
  • PT – Pacific Time Zone

Pacific Time Zone

The Pacific Time Zone is

  • 3 hours behind the Eastern Time Zone
  • 2 hours behind the Central Time Zone
  • 1 hour behind the Mountain Time Zone
  • Las Vegas is in the Pacific Time Zone
  • 1 hour ahead of the Alaska Time Zone
  • 2 hours ahead of the Hawaii–Aleutian Time Zone

From Wikipedia, Pacific Time Zone:

The Pacific Time Zone (PT) is a time zone encompassing parts of western Canada, the western United States, and western Mexico. Places in this zone observe standard time by subtracting eight hours from Coordinated Universal Time (UTC−8). During daylight saving time, a time offset of UTC−7 is used.

In the United States and Canada, this time zone is generically called the “Pacific Time Zone”. Specifically, time in this zone is referred to as “Pacific Standard Time” (PST) when standard time is being observed (early November to mid-March), and “Pacific Daylight Time” (PDT) when daylight saving time (mid-March to early November) is being observed. 

Southwest Time Zones