TTT*: Finding a hotel room in Vegas

January 8, 2008 at 2:13 pm 1 comment

Let’s say you want to go to Vegas for St. Patrick’s Day weekend, plan to attend an event at the Flamingo, and are on a limited budget but want to stay on the Strip.  What do you do?

First: Hit up Expedia, Travelocity,, etc.  See which hotels appear to be in your price range.

Next: Visit the hotel websites of the hotels that seem to be what you’re looking for to see if they have better deals than the big websites.  Ideally, you’ll be able to book a room through the hotel at the same rate you find on Expedia (or similar) and have the option to cancel or change your reservation if you see a better deal as it gets closer to your visit.

Where to stay: I personally have stayed at Planet Hollywood, MGM, and Paris** on the Strip.  I’ve also stayed at the Hilton (off-Strip) and visited most of the other places.  My top picks of the mid-range hotels (we usually go for mid-range): Rio (suite for $227) or Hilton ($177) (if you can deal with being off-Strip), MGM ($325), NYNY ($305), and Planet Hollywood ($299).  You’ll usually be able to find a good rate for Statosphere ($175) and Luxor ($255 – that’s a bit high, imo), but boy are those far away from everything!  While it may appear that everything is close together, it’s really not.  Decide if the $ factor is worth taking the bus/monorail or driving.  (Honestly, parking is easy and free; the casinos all have huge parking decks.  And driving is fine as long as you stay off of Las Vegas Blvd.)  In a dream world, I’d stay at Mandalay Bay ($390 or $440 for The Hotel), Venetian ($349), Bellagio ($409), or Wynn ($599). 

With the parameters in mind that I outlined at the beginning, I’d probably suck it up and stay off-Strip at the Hilton ($177) or Rio ($227) or bite the bullet and stay at Flamingo ($275) or Planet Hollywood ($299).  Those are centrally located and probably worth the extra bucks to save time and hassle.  I’d book with the hotel directly so I could continue to watch for a better deal. 

Yes, Vegas is a bit expensive, especially on the weekend and especially on a holiday.  It’s a tourist destination, and they can get away with it.

** I would highly recommend eating at Paris (the buffet, the creperie, the bakery, Mon Ami Gabi), but I cannot recommend staying there.  The tiny room we had was cute, but they did not thoroughly clean our room before we arrive (great gob of hair in the bathroom) and they were very rude about it when I complained.  I expect better service than that.  Besides, Planet Hollywood is a much better value considering room size.

*Travel Tip Tuesday


Entry filed under: Travel Tips.

Vegas: Cheap Gambling Grand Canyon West

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Anon  |  January 11, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    I’d say that if you are planning in advance, sign up for any of the players clubs that you can online, you’d get e-mailed special discounts and promos that aren’t readily found on other online sites. The trick is to pick up the actual card before you check in.


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