Cheap Vegas Vacation

Save on Vegas Strip Hotels

Even if you don't spend a lot on gambling, it's possible to get some good offers on hotels on the Vegas Strip. Over the past few years, however, the value of these offers got ruined by the addition of Resort Fees. Now I can understand the higher end Vegas hotels charging a resort fee, but I have to complain when all levels of hotels charge it. Ceasars Entertainment even had an ad campaign on how their hotels don't charge the fees. They turned around on that quickly. In fact, unless you're a Diamond players club status, you'll even be charged a resort fee on comped rooms. At this point, you're going to have to realize that the hote fee is going to be higher than you're expecting.

So how can you get a good Vegas deal?

Player's Club
As always, if you gamble, be sure to have a players club card for the casinos you gamble at. After all, even though you'll need to pay a resort fee, at least you might still be able to get a deal on the room. Remember, don't spend more than you can afford or would want to spend gambling. It can be easy to get caught up trying to get a big win. When playing slots or video poker, I'll put $20 in and see how far that will take me. Don't play just for trying to get free or discounted rooms as that's something the casinos want. Without even realizing it, you might end up spending more than you'd expect. And if you do start winning a good amount, cash out and put a fresh $20 in the machine or whatever amount you started with. And just because you lost money in a casino, it doesn't gaurantee that you will get comped a hotel room in the future so be sure you're having fun while you're playing or it's not worth it.

Hotel Sales
Vegas Hotels do hold sales occasionally to give a nice discount. It seems like I typically see 72 hour sales when they do happen. Be sure to stay on the email lists of the major casinos and check their sites often if you're thinking of going on a trip soon. Obviously the sale offers will be mostly for dates that aren't the busy times of the year, but that's when I prefer to go.

When signing up for a players club account, be sure to provide your email address. Also check Vegas hotel websites to see if they have a place on their site to signup for deals. Doing so, you might receive emails with codes to enter on their reservation system for certain deals such as a discounted price, free buffet each day you stay there, or a dining credit. Total Rewards, for example, will have a 'My Offers' section where you can view your targeted offers that might include freeplay when you book your room or 2 free nights.

Credit Cards
Both MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment have their own credit cards to offer incentive to stay and play in their casinos. You might expect me to plug those credit cards, but that's not true. Credit cards can be a valuable asset for cheap vacation and you might be better off with some other credit card options. Some of the major hotel brands have partnered with the Vegas Strip hotels to allow for cross points earning/redemptions. If you get the Hyatt credit card from Chase, you'll receive 2 free nights at any Hyatt in the world after spending $1,000 in 3 months of opening your account. Hyatt has partnered with MGM, so you could use those nights to stay at the Bellagio hotel and casino. Considering they can be used at any casino in the world, you might want to use them somewhere more expensive, however. For the $79 annual fee, you'll receive 1 free night each year at a category 1-4 Hyatt hotel. This would include Monte Carlo, MGM Grand, New York-New York, Excalibur and Luxor. Another card that gives you a free night each year is the IHG card from Chase. The annual fee is only $49 and the free night can be used at any level hotel in the IHG catalog. Luckily, they partnered with a high end Vegas strip hotel that you can use this free night on - the Venetian/Palazzo. The great part about using your points/free nights? You're only restricted by room availability. What I mean is that there aren't blackout dates. If you book far enough in advance, you can use points/free nights for booking hotel for New Years Eve or any other time that would be expensive.

There's an MGM Facebook game called myVegas. The app has a variety of slots that you can play for free to earn 'gold coins' to buy rewards like free hotel rooms, discounts at restaurants and more. They really try to get you to purchase in-game chips, but the whole point in playing is to get free stuff. Thought the question is if it's worth spending time to play. When it first launched a few years ago, it was absolutely worth it. However, the rewards have been devalued (more coins required to redeem rewards) and they've imposed many restrictions since then. I realize they needed to do that since people where funding their whole trips with rewards but at this point it's really far from what it used to be. You can now only redeem 3 rewards within 30 days (only 1 comped room per 30 days). They also used to have great rewards such as 2 nights in a suite at the Mirage for not that many gold coins. While I no longer feel it's good use of time to try and earn high valued rewards, it is good to help reduce some costs. You can get some free drinks or discounted dinner. And while 1 free night at a hotel may not be too much, it certainly helps with cutting some cost and makes cheap Vegas vacation a reality. And note that the free nights are offered on select dates so it's not going to be available to use on busier dates.