Kinda long, but here goes. Trip Report - MGM Grand 11/24-11/27/2014 So this was my 10th trip to LV this year, and I was traveling with my cousin Steven. (48 year old non-gambler) I was on a comp at the MGM Grand, 3 nights, $100 resort credit, and various comps from myVegas. he had been to LV before but primarily with family. Arrived at MGM and used the $20 bill trick. A word to the wise that if you need 2 beds in the room about the best that you can get (without an upgrade to a 2BR suite) is the StayWell floor, which we got. Once we got settled in, I needed to go downtown to pay off my markers from my last trip at Halloween. Got that taken care of at QQQQ and the D. Showed my cousin the Silver Strike machines at QQQQ, and he sat down and won one. He was excited. I took his card and quickly made the "new member" points and got him a T-shirt. I noticed that he only played 30 cent bets. He played the minimum wherever we went. Picked up the $350 Tumi bag at the D. Only 3 left so if you want a HIGH quality carry on bag for 1/2 price, there are 3 left. Used $250 in comp money and paid the rest in cash. From there, we drove to the Venetian where I showed him the Gold Lounge in the High Limit Slot pit. Since they only serve "finger food" at the Gold Lounge and we were hungrier than that, we had lunch at Noodle Asia. I played long enough at V/P to round my point total up since one of the objectives this trip was the Grazie Gift Extravaganza, but it cost me about $1000. After that, we walked through to the Palazzo and across to the Wynn/Encore. I took care of some business there and played a little, but 750 points was a little too much for 2 buffets, so we went back downtown. Back downtown, we went to Golden Nugget, Mermaids, La Bayou, and Golden Gate, where I played my comp money and he signed up for slot clubs. Didn't spend a lot of time there, just enough time to see where we wanted to return to. After all, this was the first night. He watched the FSE and I played at Binion's using free play. At 9PM we went to dinner at Magnolia's where I had the Prime Rib dinner and paid for it withy comp money. At about 10PM we went back to MGM Grand and turned in. I am not a drinker, nor in my old age a late bird. Saw that someone had delivered 4 hugh chocolate covered strawberries. Didn't notice my casino host's card until the next morning. End of Day one In the morning I got up at 6AM and went downstairs to play a little and was up $600 in about an hour, playing $1 and %5 slots. Went back to the room at 8AM. My cousin was awake and I suggested that we go to Red Rock. He mentioned that a friend of his was an architect who worked on the Summerlin Town Square project. Got to Red Rock, he signed up for the slot club and I played slots in the high limit slot pit. We had two free breakfast buffets but since the line was soooooo loooong, we abandoned it and went Downtown to sign him up at Downtown Grand. Downtown Grand was having a pie promotion, a free T-shirt and for 500 points a free pumpkin pie, for 1000 points, two pumpkin pies and a hoodie for the new member. I quickly got his 1000 points and then started on my 1000 points. So, from Downtown Grand he got 2 pumpkin pies, a t-shirt and a hoodie 9which he gave to me), and I got 2 pumpkin pies. I couldn't take my pies home, so I gave them to a friend who has a chocolate shop in Container park. He was driving back the next night, so we decided to pick the pies up the following day. After that, we went back to MGM Grand and went on "free time" until 6PM. I met with my host for the first time, a charming (and attractive) young lady names Vanessa. We talked about the minimum requirements for getting room comp and what the expectation was for my stay. She told me: 3500 points per day or $200-250 a hand for 4 hours, just for a standard room comp at MGM Grand. No F&B, no show tickets. She also told me that she would be happy to go over my totals wioth me after the trip was over and let me know where I was over/under. I hit a hand pay jackpot for $1442.00 which brought me back a little. Went to dinner at Asian Wok and sushi bar $81.00 for a meal that would be about $25.00 up on Spring Mountain anywhere else. Hamachi Roll, Kimchee, Hot & Sour soup Pad Thai, Beef Lo Mien, and Tea, It was very good, IMHO just overpriced. Still we had $100 resort comp to use and we were eating red meat the following night so I gave my cousin a culinary break. After that, it was over to Aria for Zarkana. I got myVegas tickets for the 9:30 show, which, in retrospect, probably wasn't the best idea, but, whatever. I actually came out ahead at Aria. My cousin watched me make $300 in 3 minutes but I reminded him, yeah, but you didn't see me lose $600 in 10 minutes earlier. We separated for an hour and met up before the show started. According to mLife, I was ahead about $250 at Aria. Zarkana was good. I hadn't seen it since they re-staged it. The juggler was gone. What a shame, I really enjoyed her. The sand sculptress was still in. Plus the twin brothers and the trapeeze artists that were added. 11PM and we went back to MGM Grand. Editorial comment. The next portion of this is an explanation of Gambling and comps and what it takes to get them and maintain them. If you don't want to be bored by this, skip to "Day Three" I am including this for the "newbie" gambler (like my cousin). So, my cousin was "amazed" at all of the "free" stuff that I was getting. The room, all of the meals, the show tickets, and I saw that he was trying to figure out how to get in on all of this. i told him that purchases through mLife got 25X in points/tier credits. He signed up for an mLife card and made a small purchase and asked me when the points would show up. I told him that for slot play, it shows up immediately, but for other activities I wasn't sure. I then reminded him that it would take $1000 in purchases (not slot action) to qualify for the next level (Pearl). I reminded him that I was at Platinum level mostly on play and that was 200,000 points. I also told him that gambling was what I did for "fun" and my lifestyle and income level allowed me to do this. I aslo reminded him that I was having a very good year and after 10 trips I was still playing on "house money". I told him "you're not a gambler, and you shouldn't be. Play what you want, and take what they give you. You don't play much, so you shouldn't expect much. You will probably get some offers from the downtown properties based on my play on your cards, and you can take them, but if you don't play at the minimum expectation, you probably won't get invited back." I think that brought him back down to earth. End of Day two Day Three The next morning I got up at 6AM and went downstairs. I played for about an hour and was plus or minus $200. Went back upstairs picked up my cousin and went to DuPar's at the Golden Gate for breakfast. I had a $25 comp that I try to use every trip. I picked up the 2015 Golden Gate calendar (with the dancing dealers) and thought that the D would also have their calendar available. Found out later that the D was not having a calendar for 2015. When I got home I emailed my host at the D and asked her to let management know how disappointed I was. On to the Downtown Grand, where my cousin picked up his hoodie, and 2 pumpkin pies. I sat and played slots and had enough comp money that we ate lunch at S+O. Left there and went to Venetian/Palazzo for the Grazie Gift Extravaganza. The point totals were high this year. 57,500 for $100 gift card or $100 free play. I only had 40,524 so I wasn't expecting much. Then, there was an FOB mother/daughter in front of us who waited 30-45 minuted to redeem 7,800 points. So I ended up with a Best Buy gift card, a gift for one of my casino hosts, and some pens. Done there. Left there and went to Sam's Town. They were also having a pie promotion. Had a good run on Sphinx 3-D and got an apple pie for each of us, gave them to him to drive back that night. From Sam's Town, we went back to MGM so I could take a nap and we would go to Andiamo's at the D for 7PM dinner. I couldn't sleep, so i suggested that we go down to the D for some craps action before going to dinner. it would get him on the road earlier. Went from Sam's town to Eastside Cannery, where they were having yet ANOTHER pie promotion, but the lines were so long we didn't sign up for the Player's Club there. On the way out I got the bonus on Hot Molten Money and on the first bonus spin got 19 out of 20 positions with the highest level character, so that made me +$100 there and we left. So, we went down to the D. I am on the comp list at the D and every month I get $200 FP, $100 match play and $150 in food. They have a very, very good steakhouse, Andiamo's, and I try to frequent them every month. So, I won my (2) $50 match play hands at blackjack, and then went over to the $5 craps table to play with Steven. Played there for about 20 minutes but wasn't getting any "love" from the table, so I told Steven that I was calling it quits but he could stay on the table. He said that he was ready for dinner. We got the bill to $149.76 so all it cost us was the tip. We then went back to MGM Grand and I transferred all of his stuff to his car and he took off for home. I didn't really have any inclination to play heavily so after an hour of driving around, I went to the El Cortez. I took out my 5x points promo and won about $200, then went back to the room. At this point, we hadn't used ANY of the comps from myVegas (which I had returned), but only paid tips. End of Day three Day four time to go home So, woke up at 6AM, packed my bag and went downstairs for breakfast and one last swing for the fences. Was down about $1000, but played a $.50 Wild Wolf machine and hit for $500, then went over to a 9 line Triple Double and it it for $300 more, so I said, "that's enough", time to go. Called VIP services and they comped out the small balance left, so the hote bill was $0.00 Went and gassed up the rental, ended up going to Silver Sevens and spent 30 minutes there. Played Sinbad, an Aruze game with low payouts but plenty of bonus play. Lost $100 there, which I made up at the airport. The rest of the trip was uneventful, I got in the first row on the SWA plane back. Hope you liked this trip report. I will be going down for a day next week (Dec. 4) for the HGS giveaway, and again on NYE.