Budget Guide to Las Vegas
In the past few years, I’ve been on more long haul flights than I’d like. Way more. I’ve been everywhere from Bali to Singapore to Thailand - and spent a small fortune in the process. I promised myself that 2018 would be my year of short haul destinations - easy enough when you live in Europe to be fair. Plenty to see and do just a few hours away (and much easier on the purse strings too). But then an unexpected trip to Las Vegas came up. It was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up; my first ever trip to the States!
I had a few weeks to get the funds together for my trip, so I knew it was going to be very budget friendly. With a little bit of research (and the help of the people I went with who knew eeeeeverything) I think I managed a pretty fantastic time on minimal cash. Go me!
Here are a few little tips for enjoying Las Vegas on a budget. Any more? Add them in the comments!
Food and Drink
Let me be honest here. I’d like to think of myself as a little bit of a foodie. Not in that I have a super refined palette or enjoy eating things like mousse, flowers and reductions as a main course, but I love finding new restaurants. I love to plan where I’m going to eat and book something a little fancy as a treat. Usually. On my Vegas trip though, I was so excited to have all my first ‘American’ experiences. Luckily for me, the novelty value of places like In-N-Out (McDonalds has been ruined for me forever) and IHOP were enough to hold me over for a week of cheap eats. Special mention has to go to Earl of Sandwich and all the pizza places I tried out. Why don’t we make pizza slices that size in the UK???
Drinks wise, I have to give it up to the casinos. If you want to get good and drunk on really no money at all, all you have to do is sit yourself down at a table or a machine and pay the lovely waitress a few dollars. You’ll be rolling around faster than you’d think. I had one French Martini in the Wynn and it was like drinking a tiny glass of straight vodka. Smart really, since you spend money you didn’t mean to on the slot machines.
I bought tickets to see Calvin Harris at Omnia in Caesars Palace. Not my usual thing, but an experience I wanted to have. Our tickets cost about $120, with VIP entrance (no long queues - and the queues were epic) and a $100 dollar drinks voucher. Pretty reasonable all things considered. I should say that it is more expensive for men, though I have no idea why since there were far more women - but I’ll take it!
If gambling is your thing but you don’t have the big bucks to spend, it’s worth noting that it’s a lot cheaper during the day than it is at night time. Plus, if you get lucky on a machine you can play that thing for hours! I wasn’t all about gambling, but I did have some fun (and managed to win back what I’d spent on my shopping habit).
So let’s talk about shopping. I did a lot of it. I had to buy a new (bigger) suitcase to get everything home. I know, I know, but the outlet shopping near Vegas is epic. We spent a few days walking around, buying things we really didn't need. 70% off in places like Steve Madden and Levis will do that to a girl. I also did some damage in Sephora and Bath and Body Works. I can’t even say it was budget friendly, because shopping is where most of my budget went. Oops.
I had always thought that a trip to Vegas would cost an absolute fortune. If you’re looking to stay somewhere super luxurious then sure, it’s going to cost a bit. I didn’t mind where I stayed as long as I was on strip. And a fantastic deal for the Tropicana (a Doubletree by Hilton hotel) came up, which was perfect. Because I had a room all to myself (bliss), my entire trip including flights and accommodation came to around £750 for a week. Pretty reasonable, right? The two people I was there with shared a room, bringing the price of their trips down to around £550 which is just insane. The Tropicana is a smaller hotel on the strip, especially compared with places like the Bellagio and Caesars Palace - but I liked that. The hotel was super clean and bright, and the casino area had been recently renovated and was one of my favourite hotels on the strip. Handy, since it was right downstairs!
It’s so easy to go to Vegas with preconceived notions about how much money you’re going to spend. But it doesn’t have to be the case. There are so many ways to get around spending a ton of money! Although next time I do Las Vegas, I’ll be giving myself enough time to do it big…
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