- I’ve visited Las Vegas over 50 times and stayed in most resorts, so I have tips for booking stays.
- Stay near where most of your activities are taking place — and look for hotels with a good pool.
- High prices are often a sign there’s an event in town, and you might want to change your trip dates.
I take the planning of our Vegas trips very seriously.
After decades of visiting Sin City and over 50 trips, I’ve learned that the first — and most important — step is booking our room. I want the best location, great dining, a fabulous pool, and the cheapest possible price.
So, after much experience and some big travel mistakes, here’s everything I take into consideration when I book a hotel in Vegas.
Consider what your itinerary looks like before choosing a hotel
Vegas is a world-class entertainment destination featuring hundreds of shows, concerts, and sporting events. After deciding what we’ll be doing in Vegas, I then select a hotel nearby.
During our last trip, we enjoyed the new Cirque du Soleil show at New York-New York hotel. When the show was over, we walked 10 minutes back to our hotel room at the NoMad. We avoided the hassle of waiting for an Uber and saved a few bucks as well.
If you’re attending a hockey game at T-Mobile Arena, you’ll be within walking distance of hotels New York-New York and the Park MGM. Raiders fans can exit Allegiant Stadium and quickly enter either Mandalay Bay or Delano hotel.
Nothing can ruin a good evening like sitting in traffic, so take a few minutes to find and book the most conveniently located hotel.
Choose a resort with a great pool
Resort pools have become entertainment destinations with day clubs, cabanas, restaurants, bars, music, and games.
Before booking a hotel, I look at the website to see what type of pool area is offered. I prefer multiple pools, a game area, and, of course, a bar. Some of our favorite pools are at Resorts World, Park MGM, and the Wynn.
Many of our afternoons in Vegas are spent relaxing by the pool, usually with a drink in hand.
If you’re a foodie, check out the resort’s dining scene before you book
The No. 1 reason I go to Vegas is to eat. Few cities in the US have as many top-notch restaurants as Las Vegas.
But not all resorts are equal when it comes to dining, so I always look for a list of restaurants on each hotel’s website. I want a nice mix of cuisines as well as a few budget-friendly eateries.
For a long time, our favorite resort for dining has been The Cosmopolitan. We love to grab breakfast at Eggslut in the morning, a slice at Secret Pizza for lunch, and a pre-dinner cocktail at The Chandelier.
Our new favorite destination for food is Resorts World — its Famous Food Street Eats hall has some of the best Asian cuisine in Vegas.
For a quieter experience, choose a resort without a casino in it
Although I love the constant party vibe in Vegas, sometimes I want a break from it and choose a resort without a casino.
There are a few places where guests can enter a quiet lobby, check in quickly, and arrive at their room without walking for miles.
Vdara is the ideal spot to combine a central Strip location with a quiet hotel. If you want something luxurious, opt for the Waldorf Astoria. Delano is a bit removed from everything on the Strip, but it’s a lovely all-suite property for a romantic getaway.
Don’t forget to factor in extra costs, like resort and parking fees
When checking hotel prices, factor in extra fees. Many of the better hotels now charge up to $50 per night in resort fees. Most hotels will also charge you for parking.
You can’t do anything about it, but it’s better to factor in this additional cost before your trip than to be unpleasantly surprised at checkout.
High prices often mean there’s a big event in town — and you may want to change your travel plans
If a major event is in town, your best bet is to visit Vegas another time.
Large conferences and popular sporting events can quickly drive up hotel rates and make the city busier than usual.
A few years ago, we had planned to visit Vegas in early January. But when we started our search for the perfect hotel, every room on the Strip started at $500 per night.
I soon learned that the Consumer Electronics Show — the largest conference that is held here each year — was taking place. Needless to say, we canceled those plans.
Consider saving money with a midweek or summer stay
The best prices for hotels can usually be found midweek, so you’ll save money if you have flexibility with your trip.
In addition, our favorite money-saving strategy is to visit Vegas in the heat of the summer. Temperatures will likely be above 100 degrees Fahrenheit at all times, but the room rates are reasonable, and I just plan to spend the day by the pool.
Embrace the mindset that there’s always a better deal somewhere
I don’t accept high-priced hotel rooms easily, so I compare prices on a number of websites.
First, I start with the hotel’s own website. Although this is rarely the place for the cheapest prices, there are sometimes extra perks offered when you book directly from the resort.
If you come to Vegas regularly, it’s worth signing up for one of the loyalty programs like MGM Rewards or Caesars Rewards, which can result in waived resort fees and free parking.
I also look for deals on websites like Hotels.com, Booking.com, and Travelzoo, where there is often a discount to be had.
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