Sin City, the City of Lights, Glitter Gulch, the Entertainment Capital of the world, or whatever you may call Las Vegas, it is an item on many bucket lists. In 2015, over 42 million people visited the city. Groups of bachelor and bachelorette parties flood the city’s streets as well as people seeking to better their life in same way, whether it be through travel or winning money. Some people travel to Las Vegas to seek riches, while others may have traveled there to perform a last-minute wedding.
Whatever your reason for visiting Sin City is, it can be a costly venture. However, it doesn’t have to be. There are ways that you can save and make the most out of your trip to Las Vegas.
- Go during the slow season. July, August, and mid-December are the best times of the year to go to Las Vegas. If your schedule allows for it, come mid-week. You will avoid the crowds and will be able to save a ton of money on hotels and clubs by coming on a Tuesday or Wednesday versus arriving on the weekend.
- Don’t buy alcohol. It’s free. If you are gambling in a casino, cocktails, beer and wine are free. Just be sure to tip your waitress and she will continue to come back and make sure you have booze. The best advice for tipping is to start with a $5 bill then for every drink after that tip the server $1 to $2. You can also carry alcohol out on the street, so if you order a drink and don’t have time to finish it, get a to-go cup.
- Drive if you can. If you are on the West Coast, driving to Las Vegas is the cheapest way to travel. However, flying does not have to be expensive either. Many local airlines have flights to Las Vegas for fairly cheap. For instance, Spirit Airlines has a road-trip flight from Myrtle Beach, S.C. to Las Vegas for $300 (an extremely cheap ticket for a coast-to-coast flight). Check your local airlines for good deals.
- If you live near Los Angeles you can take a bus to Vegas. Round-trip bus tickets run between $50 and $100.
- If you can, avoid cabs. They are expensive! Save some money by riding the public transportation in Vegas.
- Compare! Always compare your options when you are planning a trip to Vegas. Compare your airfare, compare your hotel prices and compare prices at restaurants. It will help you save a bit of money. Smarter Vegas is a great place to check for promo codes before you make a final decision on hotel rooms, etc.
- Staying in a suite with a large group of people can be beneficial to your wallet. If you split the price with friends, a fancy suite can be pretty affordable.
- If want to see a show, stop by the Tix4Tonight booth to get major discounts.You can get the best ticket prices if you go to the booth the morning of the show. You can also watch some of the free shows in Vegas like the fountain show at the Bellagio, the Sirens of TI and the dueling piano bar at Harrah’s.
- Go sightseeing in Vegas. You will feel like you are going around the world. You can spend some time walking from casino to casino and stop in “Paris” and “New York” while you are visiting.
- Instead of heading out for an expensive dinner buffet (what many people look forward to in Vegas), try a brunch buffet. Brunch buffets are generally much cheaper and they tend to include an alcoholic beverage of some kind.
- You can also check Restaurant.com, Living Social and Groupon before you go for deals on food while you are in Vegas. These sites can allow you to eat great food and still stick to your budget. Also, check out a happy hour list before you go out for the night. You may be able to score half-priced drinks and appetizers.
- Keep your trip short. Las Vegas can be exhausting and overwhelming. If you are flying in from far away, make time to go to other nearby destinations like the Grand Canyon.
- Make sure you bring good people. Your trip’s success will rely on the people you bring, so bring your favorite people. Also, make sure the expectations of the trip are known and go with people that want to do and see the things you do.
- Finally, if you’re gambling, bring out only what you want to spend for the day. There is no bigger mistake than bringing your credit card or ATM card into the casino with you and not having a set amount you want to spend.
- Most importantly, have fun.
Photo: Flickr: ConstantinAB