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 look at saving money on transportation and hotels. In part two, we look at food, shows, and where to spend your time.
You don’t need to rent a car
Wherever you look in Las Vegas, there are opportunities to spend a lot more money than you should and it begins as soon as you get to the airport. Renting a car can easily cost $30/ day and if you aren’t leaving the city, you just don’t need a car. There are lots of cheap ways to get around town and because of traffic, many of them are even faster than going by car.
Bus– My experience with the buses in Las Vegas has been very good. I have found them to be clean and reliable. At a price of $20 for a 3 day pass they are definitely much cheaper than renting a car. One time when you will certainly want to take the bus is when you arrive from the airport. When you buy your plane ticket the airline will probably give you the option of purchasing a trip on a shuttle bus from the airport to your hotel. These normally cost about $15 and are certainly not a good deal. Instead you can just take a city bus to whatever hotel you are going for a fraction of that price.
Monorail– When you are on the strip the fastest way to get around is on the monorail. This silent above ground train gets you across the strip much quicker than you could ever get there by car. The monorail doesn’t go downtown, so you will need to take the bus when going to Fremont St. A three-day pass is $28
Taxi- I have no idea how much a taxi costs because I have never been in one. I am guess they aren’t a good deal.
Walking- My favorite way to get around Las Vegas is to walk. Besides being free and good exercise, it is also fun. All of the Casinos on the Strip are architectural marvels and even if you don’t have time to go inside each one you should at least walk by them all and have a good look. Pedestrian bridges at each intersection along the strip make walking safe and if you enjoy people watching you are guaranteed to see plenty of interesting characters strolling down the strip. Walking between the strip and downtown is a long trip through some questionable neighborhoods, so you might want to take the bus.
If you want to find a good deal on hotels when you stay is more important than where you stay. Las Vegas fills up on the weekends and is much less crowded during the week. You will find the best deals between Sunday night and Thursday night, so if you can plan your trip at this time you will not only save some money, but also find the attractions quite a bit less crowded. During the week you can often find hotels for well below $50/ night.
If there aren’t any incredible deals on hotels when you are going, you should strongly consider staying downtown on Fremont St. instead of at the strip hotels. Not only are the hotels generally less expensive downtown, but everything else is as well. Staying downtown will allow you to save on all the other stuff you spend money on in Las Vegas without having to travel downtown each time you pull out your wallet.
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