Sin City is not exactly known as a frugal vacation spot. On the contrary, it’s very easy to overspend while you’re there. If you’re on a tight budget, here are some practical tips to help you save money in Vegas.
Share a Suite
Image via Flickr by Jim Raffel
Instead of settling on a motel room the size of a small box, why not share a luxurious suite with friends and family? For example, you could get a $500-per-night, high-roller-type suite at any of the top hotels in town for just $125 per night if you split the cost with four friends. Las Vegas is much more fun with friends, anyway!
See Free or Cheap Shows
You don’t have to spend big bucks on expensive entertainment while in Las Vegas. There are plenty of things to see and do that are inexpensive or free. For instance, you can see the denizens of Mandalay Bay’s Shark Reef for just $18 for adults and $12 for children aged 5-12. Hobnob with flamingos and other tropical birds for free at the Flamingo Hotel’s beautiful wildlife habitat. How about a shrimp Cocktail at the Golden Gate for just $2.99?
Go in the Off-Season
As with any popular tourist destination, hotel and food costs are high during the peak seasons and considerably lower during the off-season. For Las Vegas, that season is summer, when daytime temperatures regularly soar over 100 degrees. Yes, it’s very hot there, but the casinos and hotels are all climate-controlled to a pleasant 68 degrees, and there are plenty of pools in which to cool off. In addition, most of the hotels have misting systems that douse the boiling sidewalks every few minutes or so. To save the most money, book your Vegas rooms early and plan to visit during the middle of the week rather than on the weekends.
Go Cash-Only in Casinos
Casinos are designed to be places where time ceases to exist. They’re crafted strategically to part you from your hard-earned money, and many people fall under their spell. To counter this, make the casinos cash-only zones. Allot yourself a gambling limit and bring only enough cash to cover this amount — leave the cards in the hotel safe. That way, when you run out of cash, you won’t be tempted to run to the ATM to get more.
Eat Buffet Style
Las Vegas is famous for its gambling, its extravagant shows, and its endless buffets. The casinos want you to save your money for gambling, so many of them have buffet dining options that are surprisingly cheap. If you eat most of your meals at the buffets, you’ll find that your food costs are minimal. By the way, drinks are always free while you’re gambling, so save your alcoholic consumption for then.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have fun in Las Vegas. With a little planning and some smart decision-making, you can have a great time without emptying your bank account.