While it is well-known that the ridiculously cheap buffets that Las Vegas used to be known for are a thing of the past, it is still possible to save money in Las Vegas. If you know where to look, there are several deals that can be found to make your vacation to Sin City fairly cheap. This is a two-part series on how to save money on your Vegas vacation. In part one we looked at saving money on transportation and hotels. In part two, we look at food, shows, and where to spend your time.
The Strip- Despite the reputation for cheap food, restaurants on the strip are no deal. I found it was difficult to find a meal for less than $20. There is a deal at the Excalibur and Luxor Casinos where you get access to both casino’s buffets for 24 hours for $35. If you time things right, you can make that 4 meals for less than $10/ meal, which isn’t a bad deal, but that is too many buffets for me. I think it is a better idea to hit a grocery store and eat stuff you can keep in your backpack while on the strip. Food is much cheaper downtown, so you will save money if you save your nice dinners for when you visit Fremont street.
Going to world-class shows is another very popular thing to do in Las Vegas. Unfortunately, this isn’t cheap either. There are some shows that don’t cost a lot, but those are by acts that aren’t as popular. If you just want the experience of going to a Vegas style show you can find a cheap ticket and will have a great time. If you want to see a big act, I’m afraid you’re going to have to pay for it.
One question to ask is do you really need to see this show in Vegas? There are many musicals on the strip, but if you can wait a year or two it is likely that the same show will be playing in a city closer to where you live with a much lower ticket price. The last time my wife and I were in Vegas we really wanted to see Penn & Teller. The tickets were expensive, but I had wanted to see their show for years and I knew Vegas was likely my only choice, so I sucked it up and went ahead and put down the money.
I searched and searched, but I just couldn’t find a good deal on the show I wanted to see. I found a small discount at a booth advertising discount show tickets inside a casino, so that is where I ended up buying from. The show was great by the way, so it was worth the money.
So far I have pretty much just said everything was way too expensive on the strip so you need to just stay away if you want a cheap vacation, right? Wrong! The strip is great because there is an almost unlimited amount of stuff to do, and all the best stuff is free! Spend all evening watching an incredible water ballett in front of the Bellagio? Free! Walk along a recreation of Venice’s canals? Free! Watching a ridiculous pirate show that doesn’t make any sense in front of Treasure Island? Free! See recreations of the cities of New York, Paris, or ancient Rome? It’s all free! So even if you stay downtown you should still plan on spending lots of time on the strip. You will want to go at least once in the daytime to see everything in full daylight, then again after dark to see what everything looks like when it is lit up.
Downtown/ Fremont street
To summarize the two articles I have written about your Vegas vacation: Downtown, Downtown, Downtown. Everything is cheaper downtown. Hotels are cheaper, food is cheaper, and shows are cheaper, While Fremont Street doesn’t have the huge fantasy casinos of the strip there is still fun stuff to do.
Fremont street is covered by a canopy of lights that not only keeps things cooler in the summer, but also creates a very impressive light show that plays throughout the evening hours. There also activities such as a zip line over a pedestrian mall, and tons of casinos that can all be reached on foot in a matter of minutes.
Cheapovegas.com All of the topics in these two articles about your Vegas vacation were covered very briefly. For more detailed information, here is my favorite website for planning a trip to Vegas.
Photo courtesy of Samantha Celera