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Cheap Las Vegas

The following are a few suggestions for a cheap Las Vegas trip, based on research from our trip there in early 2010.

Cheap Las Vegas Airfare

If you live in one of the cities that are served by Allegiant Airlines, look them up online. Even better, if you are close to the airport, buy your tickets there. Allegiant is just about the cheapest way to go if you do it right. Their gimmick is having the lowest base prices and charging extra for everything else, starting with a $15 fee for booking online.

They also charge for snacks and drinks during the flight, so bring something to eat if you have a long flight. Travel with only carry-on luggage as well - my preference in any case. The woman in line next to us paid $70 to check her suitcase - on a flight that had a base-price of only $80 to start with. Don't choose your seats when you purchase the tickets either - that's another charge. If you are traveling as a couple Allegiant will generally get you two seats together when you check in.

Of course any airline can decide to fill their seats by discounting, so check online for whatever is available. Play with the dates if you have some flexibility. The difference of a day can mean paying hundreds of dollars more or less for the tickets.

Cheap Lodging

We booked through Expedia and got a nice room at the Riviera for $27 per night. Going off-season makes this more likely, but check online and call a few laces in any case. You never know when a hotel might have rooms they need to fill.

Cheap Meals

Watch for coupons - they are all over Las Vegas. Watch the signs as well. As we left town we saw that Terribles casino had a "Two for $9.99" dinner deal going. You also may find that if you eat at one of the reasonably-priced buffets you can get by with one meal daily (lunch is cheapest) and a snack in the evening. Of course, if you really like to gamble, sign up for the club cards at the casinos and you may soon have enough points for a free meal or two.

Cheap Entertainment

The outdoor water show at the Belaggio is beautiful to watch, and costs nothing. The pirate ship show (a couple times each evening) at Treasure Island is also outdoors and free. You can check out the lions and tigers in their enclosure inside the MGM Grand without a charge too. Downtown you can watch the awesome light show overhead at Fremont street.

Circus Circus gets special mention. Some of the best circus acts you'll see anywhere can be found here for free. The shows rotate among trapeze artists, contortionists, acrobats, and much more. All of the six presentations we saw were world-class. They are short - just ten minutes or so each - but they have a new show every 45 minutes or so from 11:00 am until midnight. And this is entirely free.

Shows can be pricey in Las Vegas, often over $100 per person. But some of the lower-priced shows are excellent. Two my wife and I loved are the magic show by Rick Thomas and the magic/comedy show of Mac King. Buy the tickets for either show from one of the discount booths that are all over town and you can get in for under $15.

Cheap Gambling

There are still nickel slot machines at several major casinos. For the longest play, try the five-cent video keno machines at the Sahara. There is still at least one roulette table that sells 50-cent chips - at Hooters - but you have to bet at least 5 per spin. Some dollar tables allow just a one-chip minimum. Watch for specials and rewards for signing up for club cards at various casinos as well.

Cheap Vegas Transportation

Taxis can be expensive because they charge by mileage and time, and traffic makes every trip a long one. The busses are a better deal unless you have a group to share costs (the taxis allow up to five passengers). The Deuce line runs up and down the strip and it cost us $7 each for a one-day pass. The ass is not just for that day, but for 24 hours, so a good strategy is to do some walking-distance things early in the day, and then travel the strip later. That way you still can use the bus for much of the next day.

For a cheap Las Vegas trip you have to be an opportunist. Watch for the deals and change your plans accordingly. It can be expensive (you'll spend over $60 for a meal for two in the Rainforest Cafe, for example), but it doesn't have to be. The McDonalds in Circus Circus even has a dollar menu.

Other Pages:

United States Travel
Cheap Family Vacations
Cheap Solo Vacations
10 Cheap Vacations

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