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Las Vegas Travel Tips For First Timers - How to Save Money on Travel Costs

Guide for Best Flight Times, Picking Hotels and Getting Lower Rates, Faster Check-Ins, Transportation


Best Vegas Flight Times

The best times to fly to Las Vegas are between 9am and 3pm. There are less business travelers flying during these hours, with the added benefit of leaving more seats open and giving you a greater chance at a reduced flight fare.
When returning home, be sure to make it to the airport early ( 1 1/2 to 2 hours before flight departure ) , especially if you are flying out on a Sunday or Thursday, as these two days are usually the most crowded.

Picking Vegas Hotels and Getting them at a Discount

An ideal location to consider for your hotel stay in Vegas is on the Center Strip as you will be within a close proximity to most of the popular Las Vegas attractions. As a secondary choice, another good location would be the South Strip. See our Las Vegas Strip Map for hotel locations.  To get discounted hotel rates in Las Vegas, try to schedule your vacation during non peak times, as room rates can easily double or triple during holidays, sporting events, and major conventions. 
A hotel rate of $80 - $100 could most often increase to $300 during a popular event such as the Super Bowl.

Also, Las Vegas hotels frequently offer discounted rates for booking 30 to 60 days prior to your arrival date. For example, a reservation made within 30 days of your scheduled arrival date may receive 10 -15% off the standard rate. 
A reservation made within 31 - 60 days of your arrival date may receive 20% - 35% off.  See our featured list of Las Vegas hotels - If you're traveling on a budget and would like to find a hotel with the cheapest room rates,
you can usually get a better deal at hotels located away from the Center Strip.  Another option is to look for Las Vegas package deals with combined hotel and airfare, which can sometimes offer a better value than booking your room and flight separately.

Faster Hotel Check In

Las Vegas McCarran Airport facilitates a remote hotel check in service helping to eliminate check in lines at the hotel. It enables you to conveniently check-in and receive your room key before leaving the airport. ( Open 7 days from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. )
The airport's hotel check in facilities are located in the Terminal 1 baggage claim area ( near Carousel 1 and 2 )
The list of hotels for which you may check-in with this service are: Harrah's, Bally's, Rio, Paris, Flamingo, Caesar's Palace, New York New York and MGM ( conveniently located Las Vegas hotels on the strip )

How to Save Money in Las Vegas Using Coupons

Some of the hotels in Las Vegas offer coupons in the form of a Las Vegas Fun Book. These coupons can be redeemed for discounted food and drinks at the buffet, deals on show tickets, and various Las Vegas freebies. This book of coupons is usually given at hotel check-in. They can sometimes also be found in hotel lobbies.

Las Vegas Transportation - Getting Around Vegas Without a Car

Las Vegas Monorails and Trams

The Vegas Strip Monorail ( Arrives at each monorail station every 7-10 minutes )  Las Vegas Monorail Hours - Operates 7am - 2am on weekdays and until 3am Friday through Sunday. 
Las Vegas Monorail Stops - The Las Vegas monorail runs from the MGM Grand located at the south strip to the SLS Station ( formerly Sahara Hotel ) at the north strip ( monorails stops at Bally's & Paris, Flamingo & Caesar's, Harrah's & Imperial Palace, the Convention Center and the Las Vegas Hilton )
All 7 Monorail stations are located behind the strip casinos.  This is an especially convenient service for first time visitors to Las Vegas. See our Las Vegas Monorail Map

One Ride  $5
24-hour     $12
3 days      $28

Mirage / Treasure Island Tram ( Arrives approximately every 15 minutes - No charge ) Operates 9am - 1am. Tram boarding is located outside the entrance of the Mirage Hotel or inside the rear section of Treasure Island Hotel.

Excalibur / Luxor / Mandalay Bay Tram ( Arrives approximately every 5 minutes - No charge )  Operates 24 hours with non-stop service from Excalibur to Mandalay Bay on the southbound trip.
The northbound trip from Mandalay Bay to Excalibur provides a stop at the Luxor.


Las Vegas Airport Shuttle

Vegas Shuttles from Airport to Hotel - Several shuttle services operate 24 hours from McCarran Airport to the strip, downtown Las Vegas and outlying areas. Shuttle buses can be found outside the baggage claim area.
Best to purchase roundtrip shuttle tickets if you are returning to the airport and be sure to ask driver for telephone number. ( Can also purchase tickets at the remote hotel check-in facility inside the Airport Terminal 1 )

Las Vegas Transportation from Airport

One way aprox.$6
Round Trip $

One way aprox. $8
Round Trip  $10-12

FREE Shuttles Between Hotels ( No Charge ) Major hotel shuttles are listed below:

Coast Casinos Shuttle:  9:30 am to 12:00 am ( Runs every 20 - 30 minutes )  

Gold Coast Casino <----------------> Bill's Gamblin' Hall <----------------> Orleans <----------------> Gold Coast Casino

Hard Rock Cafe:  11:15 am to 8 pm ( Runs every 30 minutes )  

Hard Rock Cafe <----------------> MGM Grand

Harrah's Group:  Monday - Wednesday 10:00am to 1:00am and Thursday - Sunday  10:00am to 4:00am ( Runs every 15 - 30 minutes )

Harrah's <----------------> Rio <----------------> Bally's / Paris Hotel     ( NOTE: Caesar's route has been discontinued )

Palace Station:  4pm to 10pm ( Runs every 40 minutes )

Palace Station <----------------> Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood

Sam's Town Shuttles: Several routes and varied times available ( Mornings to late night ) Includes free shuttle to Fremont street

Sam's Town ----------------> Fremont ----------------> California ----------------> Sam's Town

Sam's Town ----------------> Harrah's ----------------> Riviera ----------------> Sam's Town

Mandalay Bay:  9:30 am to 12:30 am ( Runs continuously )

Mandalay Bay  <----------------> South Point Hotel

Wynn Las Vegas:  8am to 8pm ( Runs every 20 minutes )

Wynn Las Vegas  <----------------> Las Vegas Convention Center


Las Vegas City Buses

The Deuce Bus  ( Runs every few minutes, 24 hours, 7 days a week ) This transit system covers a route that serves the entire Las Vegas Strip, from Mandalay Bay to downtown Las Vegas. Drop offs are right at the front of the casinos.

Exact change required

The Deuce One Ride $3
24-hr. all access pass $7 also good on the CAT and MAX
30-day all access pass $55

REDUCED FARE: For seniors 62 and older, and youths 6 - 17 years ( Reduced fare photo I.D. card or Clark County School ID required )
The Deuce One Ride $1.50
24-hr. all access pass $3.50 also good on the CAT and MAX
30-Day all access Pass $25


Las Vegas Trolley Bus ( Runs every 20 minutes, 7 days a week, 9:30am to 12am ) Serves hotels on the west side of the strip; its route starts at the Stratosphere ( North Strip ) then loops over to the Las Vegas Hilton ( off strip ) then stops at several of the major Srip hotels.
It's probably the best option for getting to the Strip from the LV Hilton.  Drop offs are at the rear "Tour Bus" area of the hotels. The Trolley bus is slower then then monorail as it has to weave in and out of the resort complexes which takes time.

Exact change required

One ride $2.50
24-hr. $6.50


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