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5 Money Saving Travel Tips For Las Vegas

Author: Jacob Harris

Las Vegas – known as the Entertainment Capital of the World – hosted 41,126,512 visitors in 2014, according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. In case you're wondering, that's an average of 112,675 people each day who come for vacations, to gamble or to attend one of the more than 22,000 conventions and meetings held in the city each year.

There's a lot of tourism revenue in 41.1 million visitors. Gaming alone brought in close to $10 billion in 2014, and hotels contributed more than $5 billion. As a tourist, you can end up spending some serious coin on a trip to Vegas once you add up airfare, hotels, food, gambling, entertainment and shopping.

The Best Ways to Save

Here are 5 money-saving tips to help stretch your Vegas budget a little further.

1. Use discount travel websites.

Discount travel websites, such as www.hotwire.com and www.priceline.com, offer deals on just airfare or on airfare plus hotel packages to Vegas. Some sites (such as www.kayak.com) let you search with flexible dates, which can be helpful if you want to try to find the lowest rate possible. The package deals often come with extra perks – free buffet tickets or food and beverage credits, for example – to help you save even more money.

2. Travel mid-week.

You can save a lot of money on everything from hotels to concerts and shows if you can travel mid-week (Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday). Hotels, for example, can cost two or three times as much (or even more) on the weekends than during the middle of the week for an identical room. You'll also enjoy smaller crowds, faster check-ins, faster service and shorter lines for everything. Another way to save is coming during the summer when fewer visitors (and less demand) mean better prices for airfare, hotels and shows. It will be hot (maybe really hot!), but everything is air-conditioned so just plan on spending more time indoors.

3. Try the buffets.

Many repeat Vegas goers swear by the city's fixed-price buffets, which tend to be less expensive than sit-down restaurants. Buffets, which are a part of the Vegas culture, offer a huge selection of foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner, from steak and eggs to all-you-can-eat seafood. You can also eat for cheap at one of the hotel food courts, which offer affordable meals and snacks if you're on a budget and don't mind a quick burger or slice of pizza.

4. Get half-priced show tickets.

You can get half-priced tickets to most Vegas shows, and smaller discounts for certain always sold out shows, at one of 10 Tix4Tonight locations on the Strip and on Fremont Street in Downtown. Tickets are based on availability, and it's best to shop early (Tix4Tonight locations open every day at 10:00 a.m.) to get the best show selection.

5. Sign up for Player's Club cards.

Player's Club cards work a lot like grocery-store customer loyalty cards. Casinos use them to track your gambling habits (i.e. how much you bet and how often you play). The more you play, the more points you get that you can redeem for perks like hotel discounts, free food and free show tickets. A lot of times you get deals just for signing up, so even if you're not a big gambler, it might still help your budget. Some cards are good for a collection of hotels and casinos. For example, the Caesars Total Rewards Card is accepted at multiple locations including Bally's, Harrah's, Caesars Palace and Planet Hollywood.

The Bottom Line

Once you add up the airfare, hotels, food, entertainment and shopping, a trip to Las Vegas can be very expensive. Of course, even if you save lots of money by using discount travel websites and traveling mid-week, you can still lose it all and much more by gambling. Money-saving tip number six would be: Don't ever gamble more money than you can afford to lose (in fact, plan on losing it), and know when to walk away.

For more on saving when you travel, see Websites That Save You Money On Hotel Rooms and Alternative Travel: Discount Hotels And More Online.

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