If you're looking forward to your very first trip to the gambling capital of the world, here is the unbiased view of one who has escaped to many times over the years. It will hopefully help to make your visit more rewarding and more enjoyable.
It is conceivable to go to Vegas and not gamble. But isn't that the main reason you want to go there? If you approach the activity as amusement, and budget how much you are prepared to risk, it will be fun and not too dangerous. Big wins are possible, but it helps if you know what you're doing. A good reason to check out the pages of this web site.
Set a daily budget and be honest with yourself about how much you can afford to spend. Figure this out in the sane surroundings of your home, not in the crazy atmosphere of Glitter City. Set win and loss limits. When you've reached one or the other, quit. There are lots of other things you can do besides gamble.
If you like blackjack, but not at $10 and more a hand, leave the strip and head for a smaller "locals" casinos, off the strip. There you'll find plenty of $5 and even $1 games. You'll enjoy the laid-back atmosphere and congenial dealers at low-limit tables. Just don't be lulled into forgetting that the chips you play with are really your hard-earned dollars.
You'll be astounded at the cheap meals offered in Las Vegas. Steak dinner with crab legs for $9.99? Be skeptical. It won't be a terrific steak, the crab legs might be soggy. And be aware that between you and those cheap buffets lies a huge hurdle -- the gambling floor. I once had a wonderful breakfast special for $1.99. Then on the way out I dropped $10 into a slot machine. For $11.99 that breakfast wasn't so special!
Going to most shows in Las Vegas is not a classy event. Some theaters are designed to jam the most number of people into the tiniest space. You and eleven other people might get seated at a table designed for eight. In places where there is no reserved seating, the size of your tip determines where the usher will seat you. To find out what show is playing where while you're in town, pick up one of the free entertainment guides found everywhere.
A good choice for upscale shopping is the Fashion Mall, right on the strip after Treasure Island. Most the big casino-hotels also have their own shopping arcade, the most famous of them being the Forum Shops. You may not have the budget to actually buy everything there, but go and look; you'll be impressed.
Besides gambling and shopping, there are plenty of other things to do and see in Las Vegas. Many attractions are free or cost relatively little. Practically all larger casinos offer things worth seeing or doing. Among the choices: the canals at The Venetian, the Roller Coaster at New York New York, the erupting Volcano at the Mirage, the Fountain Show at Bellagio, the Gamblers Hall of Fame at the Tropicana, and so much more. Remember, the popup on this page can return if you hit refresh. We list booking availability and pricing for your ease of reference!
If you hanker for a break from the endless action of the strip, here are a few of the many options:
Guided Las Vegas Tours
Do it the Vegas way. Do it with style and panache. But do it informed. Read up on your options and enjoy the best vlaue for money to Las Vegas, the gambling capital of the world!