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1st Vegas Trip :)

Discussion in 'Misc. Vegas Chat' started by lickyy, Jul 24, 2013.

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  1. lickyy

    lickyy Tourist

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    Hi everyone, my gf and I are looking to visit vegas sometime in the end of Sept. We are in our mid-late 20s, but we aren't really looking for wild parties or anything like that, just wanted to have a short relaxing vacay away from work. I have a few questions to ask for those who are experienced!

    1) We wanted to visit the canyon and shopping malls without joining the tours provided by hotels and other agencies (we wanted more flexibility with time etc.) so I was wondering if its a good idea to rent a car from the airport for our 4 nights stay? This way we could pickup the car after we landed and drive directly to the hotel and visit the canyon whenever etc. I was thinking about a classic american car like Mustang or something like that, is it worth it?

    2) Further to above, how does parking in the hotel work? if we are guests to that hotel, do we have to pay extra for parking? how is the drive to the canyon in a mustang convertible? Anyone done it?

    3) I know vegas is huge with the clubs and parties, but i don't think we will be looking in that direction. Maybe at max, a daytime pool party somewhere? So, is there anything else we could do during day and night? i know there are some excellent shows to watch, any recommendations?

    4) I did some brief research on hotels on Tripadvisor, and have our eyes currently set on a higher-end midstrip hotel like Aria/Cosmo. We were hoping to have air+hotel booked for about $800 per person (not including the potential car rental), is that possible for end of September? We will be flying in from Toronto.

    We are open to any suggestions/recommendations :cheers:

    Thanks in advance :nworthy:
     
  2. kel3420

    kel3420 VIP Whale

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    Many people rent a car. Yes, take the shuttle from airport to rental car facility. You want a nice car? Great! All casinos have free parking, for everyone. But I would recommend using the valet instead. It'll cost you a couple of bucks each time but well worth saving yourself the hassle of going to get your car which sometimes is a loooong walk.

    Yes, you can do the GC yourself, that's the only way I would do it.

    Cosmo is a great place to go, you can't go wrong there.

    There is a ton to do during the day without having to schedule it in advance. Being that Its your first time, just sightseeing will take up most of your time. And really do get out there and sightsee. Check out the different casinos, shopping, restaurants, etc. Get downtown at least once.


    Everyone has different opinions on shows, but I recommend seeing a Cirque show for sure, Mystere or Love are the best ones to see IMHO. Make an advance reservation for at least one nice restaurant. Eiffel Tower comes to mind for good food and awesome views. Great for first time visitors

    Read, read, and read this board. Come back often. The people here are a wealth of knowledge. I, myself have been to Vegas 40+ times and yet learn something new here all the time.

    Have fun planning!

    :beer::beer::beer:
     
  3. Fish Tacos

    Fish Tacos Low-Roller

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    I like the idea of renting a Mustang. Hotel parking will be free unless you valet.
    I've heard that Absinthe is a really awesome show.
     
  4. Bob Seaman

    Bob Seaman Tourist

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    car

    yes get a car the gc is about six hour drive
     
  5. Bommen

    Bommen High-Roller

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    1. I think its a good idea to drive to the Grand Canyon and its a much better experience the the guided tours and helicopter rides that dont take you all the way in to the best part of the canyons. I would go to the south rim since its a shorter drive then the north rim(about 4-5 hours). Leave early so you get to spend as much time there as possible to visit the different viewpoints. Since your are both young i would strongly recommend walking down the south Kaibab Trail but turn around in time so you will make it back before sunset. Watching the sunset is really a must and that leaves you with a long drive back to Vegas in the dark.

    What i would do is i would spend my first 3 nights in Vegas and since your spending the 4 day visiting the Canyons i would stay somewhere closer to the rim for the last night and then drive to the airport the next day.

    2. Parking is free and you just have to drive in and leave the car in the garage, no permit or anything needed.

    3. I would do Cirque du Soleil show, either KA at mgm(my favourite), O at Bellagio or Mystere at TI. They are the top 3 Cirque shows imo and are all great. Also no need to plan to much ahead since you will have a good time just walking the strip taking in all the sights.

    4. Both Aria and Cosmo are great but i prefer Cosmo and having a balcony and a fountain view is worth every penny.
     
  6. shifter

    shifter Degenerate Gambler

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    4 nights for a first trip with a tour of the GC is on the short side for sure.
     
  7. mossman

    mossman Low-Roller

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    I was thinking the same thing. For four days I would either leave out the GC or take the guided plane tour. You can drive out there next trip.

    Since I have visited Vegas a number of times, I now rent a car for the first part of the trip (I usually stay a week). I find the car useful to get hotel supplies (water, drinks etc) and it's nice to stop on the way to the room (normally land before check in time). Then I do the premium outlets, Hoover dam, valley of fire early on. By mid week, I am perfectly find turning in the car because if I don't, it just sits anyway. There is honestly so much to do just walking on the strip the car becomes useless to a degree...... especially since you can't drink and drive.

    For first trip just skip the car, or perhaps rent for one day. You will find 4 days is way to short!!
     
  8. lickyy

    lickyy Tourist

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    I knew this is the right place to ask questions.. thank you for all of the feedback - super useful indeed.

    One thing I am still trying to grasp is the estimated price, or what's a 'good deal' price. I went on generic travel sites like Expedia and entered in my dates and I got a whooping quote of $950 for 4 nights at Cosmo including air, can I do any better than that or is that the norm? The 4 nights will include a weekend, as we planned to travel from 9/26-9/30 (Thurs-Mon)

    Me and my girl both have a passion for fine japanese food, as I am sure there would be plenty on the strip. Are there any particular 'must-try' ones that are second to none?

    Thanks
     
  9. PSM

    PSM Low-Roller

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    Japonais at Mirage is delicious. One of my wife's and my go to places for every trip. Plan to spend around $150 for a couple drinks each and dinner with tip.
     
  10. waverunner

    waverunner BBHMM

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    I would bypass Grand Canyon, you're in Vegas for too short of time. You could fly from Vegas to GC but it will induce more of a budget.
    What i would do is rent a car for one day or more, drive out to Red Rock Canyon in the morning, and spend the morning/afternoon at Red Rock to see the nature all around Vegas. You can hike, sight see, view the Petroglyphs from Native Americans, take pics, etc. Then stop off at Red Rock Hotel/Casino for lunch/dinner on the way back to the Strip. It's only about 20+ miles to Red Rock but a world away. Then after dinner you have all night to do whatever on the Strip.
     
  11. topcard

    topcard Older than the Stardust!

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    $800 to $900 per person seems really high to me. How much of that is airfare?

    Seriously, even the non-player rates of some of the nicer places seem less than that. I would figure on 4 nights at a total of no more than $500 for the room. Look around. I have no personal info on Cosmo or Aria, but I know Mirage can be had for under $100 a night average (non-player rate) - at least it could be a few years ago.

    As for the car - my advice is this: if y'all are gonna be drinking any significant quantity, I would leave out the car rental - except for those days that you're venturing out into the wilderness... and I agree with others - save the GC for a separate trip. Do Red Rocks, or even just dedicate this first trip to vegas alone.

    I'm not sure whether you'll be doing much gambling, but no matter - be SURE to get a players card from any/every casino that you play. Your next trip will cost significantly less than this one.

    Car rental rates are certainly 'searchable', but I would think that $60 a day is something you can find for a decent automatic. Do not go 'big', as getting around vegas traffic is far easier with a mid-size or compact.

    If you do decide to still get a car, I second the motion about using valet. Just budget accordingly, and remember to keep some $1s and $5s in your pocket at all times.

    But think about this: for the price of one day's car rental, you can pay for 3 cab rides in town...perhaps four. In town? I would stick to cabs.

    Shows? I would suggest looking at who is in town when you're going to be there. Lots of websites to peruse on that.

    Have a great time!
    :beer:
     
    Seems like forever from now, but the flights are booked, so it counts!
  12. paperposter

    paperposter VIP Whale

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    as price you will have to do the reasearch ,it will cost more for hotels on weekend usually.

    its free to hold rooms so take a look and hold the rooms then see what airfare works best.


    sushi theres tones and every one will have an opinion from nobu to masa to blue ribbion.

    i would get your rooms and flights done first then fill the blanks but yes a 4 day trip is short especialy iF you going to gc ,ps you have a time change i belive so you will be kinda burnt on day one.

    i would recomend O or abstinth depending on what type of person you are and humor you like for shows
     
  13. paperposter

    paperposter VIP Whale

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    if you u can usually do better and have more flexibilty if you book the room yourself and the hotel seperate directly from hotel this way if the price drops they will lower your rate.

    just a ball park it will cost around 200$ for a friday and 250$ for a saturday and around 100$ for weekdays as long as nothing special is going on for the cosmo or that type of property.
     
  14. sura83

    sura83 Low-Roller

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    Our first trip was four days long, and we did do the Grand Canyon on one of the tours. We didn't know if we would ever go back to Vegas (hah!) and didn't want to pass up our chance to see it. It was a loooong day, but I'm glad we did it. I think for your first trip its probably not worthwhile to rent a car. There is just so much to do and see within a walk or cab ride away that you probably won't even miss having a car. As far as the price of the trip is concerned, if your dates are flexible you could certainly get a better deal if you chose different dates. Weekends are obviously going to run you more for the hotel, and Monday is usually one of the more expensive days to fly.
     
  15. MNVegasgal

    MNVegasgal Low-Roller

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    First of all - I can't imagine how excited you must be.. :).. I'm excited for you.

    We rent a car when we go to Vegas.. and I can normally get all in (Taxes fees and surcharges) for $100 bucks. We normally get an Nissa Altima, a Chevrolet Malibu or a Ford Fusion. We Valet park everywhere we go.. (He is a golfer so likes to have to car to go to the courses). Tip the Valet at drop off and pick up.. No hunting for your car in a parking garage. Leave the car parked at Valet if you plan to drink, and come back and get it when you are sober.. you only have to remember the valet ticket.

    We prefer Aria to Cosmopolitan as it is a little quieter more subdued place.. but we are Late 40's/Early 50's. My daughter age 23.. Loves to stay at Cosmopolitan. We enjoy gambling at Cosmopolitan - Drink service has always been exceptional, food choice are excellent, and easy access to the Strip and sightseeing.

    Our friends joined us last March - first times, and they drove out to the Grand Canyon one morning, and came back late afternoon. They enjoyed the time away from the strip - and liked seeing the Canyon.

    Do you and your GF gamble at all? If you do - then I wouldn't book a package, as the room is paid for and you will not be able to receive any COMPS on the back end or reduced room rates. If you book directly through the hotel (Google to see if you can find a room discount and sign up for the hotels Facebook pages and e-mail offers) then the players club can review your play at the end of your stay to see if you qualify for a discounted rooms or possible free nights. Sign up for a players card right away, and always use it when ever you play, eat or purchase anything at your hotel.

    Search your flights on the travel sights (Kayak, Expedia, Bing Travel are ones I use). I have no idea what flight from Toronto cost, someone on here should know what the "Good" price is. From Minneapolis - if we see anything under $350 we jump on it.

    Whatever you do.. enjoy have fun, and hopefully you will tell us all about it.
     
  16. papillon

    papillon Tourist

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    I would also try sites like Travelzoo or Oyster.com. They have pretty good deals on hotels and air.

    As for rental car, we always rent a car because we like to go off-strip (downtown, china town) and it can be a hassle trying to get a cab when you are not on strip.

    Absinthe is one of the must-see shows in Vegas. Warning: a LOT of profanity so if you're not into off-color humor, might want to try something else. But the venue is very intimate (small) and there are no bad seats in the house. You can usually get discounted tickets for that one in those kiosk places.

    I would also recommend Love for a Cirque show. Just fantastic.

    Japanese food, I would definitely recommend Raku. It's off strip on Spring Mountain Road. Authentic Japanese that is NOT sushi nor teppanyaki. It's not going to run you hundreds of dollars that high-end Japanese restaurants on the Strip command but you will get quality Japanese food.
     
  17. Viva Las Vegas

    Viva Las Vegas Ramblin' Gamblin' Man

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    The price on Expedia sounds reasonable depending on the flight and room type. That is a very expensive weekend for whatever reason. I'd definitely pay extra for the direct flight and seriously consider getting a room with a balcony (vs. the standard room assigned by Expedia). Weekdays are much cheaper, especially at The Cosmo.

    A six or seven day trip would work much better to fit in a side canyon trip (Vegas Th-M, drive to canyon M, stay overnight and return to Vegas T to either fly home or for one last Vegas night). Four nights is too tight, especially for a first trip, to try to squeeze Vegas and a decent side trip to the GC (and out of Vegas shopping). If you try to squeeze the GC in without staying overnight, you will not have much time at the canyon and will be exhausted by the time you return to Vegas after a full day of driving.

    The GC is much colder than Vegas (it snowed when we were there once in September). The GC is worth a trip on it's own, but if you cannot extend the trip beyond 4 days, a flight to/from the GC would be something to consider. I can't imagine sitting on a tour bus from 7AM to late at night.
     
  18. KBT2012

    KBT2012 High-Roller

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    I would go with Cosmo, younger couple has a lot of the things you mentioned....very cool modern place and I suggest you grab a room with a terrace and you won't regret it.

    To the above posters, I will just add that I have been to Vegas 15 times and have never stayed longer than 4 nights. For me, I pretty much stay on the trip but there have been times where I have left to go out to the M resort or to Prim and made a morning/short afternoon of it so don't be discouraged to go to the GC if you want. I say devote a couple days to exploring, go to GC, and "wing it" one day.

    Now that I have been quite a few times, as mentioned before I know where everything is so I usually go with a buddy or two and we just wing the entire 4 day trip.
     
  19. lickyy

    lickyy Tourist

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    Thank you everyone for their input! But yeah, we are seeing if we could extend this a little bit to 5 nights instead. This way we would have enough time to watch some shows, enjoy nice dinners, outlet malls, shooting range etc etc.

    How's the spa at aria or cosmo? Worth a visit?
     
  20. MNVegasgal

    MNVegasgal Low-Roller

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    I have had multiple services in the Spa at Aria! Love it.. it is a beautiful spa - without top notch service and amenities. I have not used the Spa at Cosmopolitan so I can't weigh in there. I highly recommend the Hot Stone Massage.. Heavenly!
     
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