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Help me choose... (Please)

Discussion in 'LV Strip Hotels & Casinos' started by gibsrach, Mar 9, 2014.

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  1. gibsrach

    gibsrach Newbie

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    I am looking into booking my first trip to Las Vegas. This is for my belated honeymoon (only ten years later, lol). I have been considering a few different hotels (included with air). I don't have a big budget unfortunately. Therefore, all the 'fancies' are out of my price range. I'd like to stay on Strip, but as I have never been Vegas, I don't know if this is necessarily important.

    First- what is the best website to book a trip?

    Here's what hotels I have been thinking about:
    Stratosphere
    Excalibur
    Luxor
    LVH
    Circus Circus

    What do I need to avoid? Which have good customer service? Which have the best entertainment?

    THANKS to all in advance for helping! I want to plan the best trip possible!!! :)
     
  2. WHIVGOYTUBE

    WHIVGOYTUBE MIA

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    How about none of the above. :thumbsdown:

    First trip to Vegas? You want to be more mid strip.

    The two big players are Mlife and CET.

    For reasonable cost with Mlife, maybe Monte Carlo (nice pool area). It is close to MGM, NYNY, Aria, and has the tram that goes to Bellagio. That covers allot of area and access to Cosmo, and CET properties such as Planet Hollywood (Pho) and Paris.

    For CET, maybe Bally's in the Jubilee Tower (but pool is just OK and is out of the way). That is more MID strip with close access to Bellagio and more CET properties such as Paris, PHo, Caesars, Flamingo, and the Linq entertainment area that has just opened.

    Never did my booking from one place. I always booked my room and flight separately on my own. It does takes some real work (over many weeks or months for good pricing), but I have found I get good prices with EXCELLENT air travel times.
    Many times when using a hotel+air package from an online site, the air travel times they offer, are, well, :vomit:

    Keep reading the past forums, and ask questions when you need help. :thumbsup: Wish I had a tool like this (VMB) when I planned my first trip. You have found the real gold mine of experience and information. I suggest you spend some serious time reading the past posts of the various topics, starting with this one (LV Strip Hotels and Casinos), for the same questions get repeated over and over again. Good Luck!
     
  3. Reston

    Reston VIP Whale

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    Among what you listed, Luxor. But, you might be able to get Bally's, Monte Carlo, Flamingo, or Harrah's for a similar price. LVH, Circus Circus, and Stratosphere are located a bit out of the action many first-time visitors.

    What are your travel dates?
     
  4. gibsrach

    gibsrach Newbie

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    I am looking at May 8-May 16 (cheapest I can find so far in the month of May).
     
  5. Dean Martin

    Dean Martin VIP Whale

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    I'd have to agree w/ the advice so far. Honestly...

    Stratosphere
    Excalibur
    Luxor
    LVH
    Circus Circus

    are so NOT the Vegas experience or feeling.

    You'll find that due to food and gambling, the room is not as big a part of your budget as you think. Definitely consider the Mirage and TI to. Both excellent mid tier resorts with an excellent location. May is perfect pool weather and you'll be hard pressed to find a better pool in Vegas than the Mirage for the price. Plus unlike some properties, the Mirage has a nice choice of reasonable food choices. CPK, the Deli, the Paradise pool cafe, BLT Burger and Japonais has some really well priced appetizers and drinks at Happy Hour.

    Good luck! - Dino
     

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  6. jackincols

    jackincols Guest

    With it being your first trip to Vegas, there's one on your list I'd delete immediately. LVH. Not that it's a bad joint, it's just that it's far from the Strip (as is Circus Circus and the Strat). Yeah, I know, the Monorail runs to the Strip, but for a first trip, I'd rather be staying on the Strip to get everywhere much easier.

    I'd also go along with others that have suggested Ballys, Harrahs or even Flamingo, if you can fit it in your budget. Can't get much more centrally located than those 3.
     
  7. waverunner

    waverunner BBHMM

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    The first thing you should do is go to CET and Milfe web sites and apply for e-mail offers. That shows you are interested.
    Then, when you get to Vegas get a Milife and CET card. Once you have the card, be sure to use it at their properties (CET is mid Strip, Milife is south Strip with Mirage/TI on the mid/north end).
    Of the properties you mentioned, Luxor is the best.
    But you have a few choices with your budget.
    CET might be cheaper for your budget as a first timer at Harrah's, Flamingo, Bally's.
    Milife will be around your budget at Excalibur, NYNY, Monte Carlo.
    Be sure to keep an eye on VMB, many questions will be answered here.
    Also, you can look at pics from the OYSTER website for Vegas hotels.
    I will be in Vegas the same time as you.
    But i suggest you first sign up for e-mails at CET and Milife properties, they may offer you some deals.
    And like i said before, once you choose your Hotel and get to Vegas, make sure you get a CET/Milife card and use it.
    It will come in extra handy if you decide to choose Vegas again.
    Once you sign in to those websites, you will notice a difference in the prices later on.
    Congrats on your belated honeymoon 10 years later.....:wink2:
     
  8. Dean Martin

    Dean Martin VIP Whale

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    Waverunner gave you some excellent advice....we've been going so long and have established ties that I forgot about signing up on-line for the specials. Plus, watch the specials Sonya posts in that section here.

    Also agree with booking your room and air seperate. If you guys plan to gamble at all, you'd be surprised at some comps you might get at check out and if you're on a pkg deal, the hotel can't comp any of your room because it's not booked thru them.

    If you're a Beatles fan at all, LOVE is one of the best shows in Vegas and yet it's old enough that you'll find some deals on tickets. Cirque of Summer usually runs some excellent prices.

    It can be pretty toasty hot in May and you'll find yoursefl taking cabs more than you think because the properties are much farther apart than they look so staying somewhere mid strip (Mirage, Bally's, Harrahs, Flamingo, TI) where you can actually walk is key.

    If you can afford it, I've always felt the Mirage is a great property for a first timer. If it's not...it's a little farther south but I'd give NYNY a look too. I'd guess they'll be close in price to the places you mentioned in your original post.
     
  9. spicole

    spicole Low-Roller

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    I agree with almost all of the great advice waverunner has already provided.

    Luxor would be the best choice on your list in my opinion, by far.

    I did a spot-check on prices for your dates on vegas.com. I agree on the Bally's or Harrah's suggestions. TI is great suggestion, too, for only a few dollars more. It looks like prices take off after that.

    You will need to factor in resort fees when comparing hotel prices to get an accurate apples-to-apples comparison.

    Two off-strip hotels looks like they may fit your budget - Rio and The Orleans. The Orleans is particularly well reviewed on this board. Rio has shuttles available back to the strip.
     
  10. pokerbucketlist

    pokerbucketlist Low-Roller

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    Of your list I would say Luxor. But try nyny prices.
     
  11. pink_paradise

    pink_paradise Low-Roller

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    Also keep an eye out on smartervegas.com. I got a great deal back in July for my first trip, stayed at MGM. Whatever you choose, have an amazing first trip! It won't be your last : )
     
  12. MNVegasgal

    MNVegasgal Low-Roller

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    Harrah's is very centrally located.. has less expensive food options.. has the fun Carnival Court with bands and Dueling Pianos. If you go to the Website they have a 20% off promotion for April and May - and the dates you are looking at are available. If you do gamble at all.. get a players card.. and if you book directly through the hotel, you may earn some comps and they can possibly take off charges at the end. The Harrah's website allows you to compare prices at multiple properties. I agree with other posters that you should book your flight and room separately unless you do not plan on gambling at all.. in that case.. the package will probably give you the best deal.
     
  13. brentsforum

    brentsforum Newbie

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    Just have fun


    I've been where you are right now, never been, where do I stay, limited budget. I recommend Excalibur, Luxor or Monte Carlo. Excalibur is run down but it's still fun, has a good location, easy access upstairs to Luxor and a nice big pool area. Luxor is fine too, just not as fun. Monte is the best of the 3, it is a bit pricier, but not as much as the really nice places. Great location, pool and bars. Stay away from the other hotels listed....too much walking. The main thing here is to have fun and scout out where you really want to stay next time. Also, try to book hotel and flight separately right through hotel and airline. Beware of hotel resort fees. HAVE FUN, and get your first time over with, then be picky later.
     
  14. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    I would pick excalibur and upgrade to the contemporary room. Luxor is nice but requires more walking and is not as fun. walking out at night to the four corners from excalibur is a gorgeous sight. walk from there to the deuce bus near the showcase mall next to mgm.
     
  15. WHIVGOYTUBE

    WHIVGOYTUBE MIA

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    I was originally thinking (and agree) the Excalibur (Mlife) and Harrah's (CET) as your best low budget options. They are a little bit on the outskirts of MID strip areas, but still excellent choices compared to the others on your list.

    Smartervegas is an excellent web site for discount codes. Plus it allows DIRECT booking with the hotel's own website. As mentioned, this is useful for comps and the hotel clerks have more freedom when using the $20 trick for room upgrades.

    One thing about Harrah's. It is right next Casino Royal, the last budget gambling dive on the strip (with anytime $1 Michelob's when you just want a drink, and not use gambling money for a comp drink).

    Next, someone on the GETTING HERE AND AROUND board mentioned the best times for getting good flight prices was 49 - 56 days out. So for May, you are in/near that window. You have to check airline prices EVERYDAY. Yea, I know, is sucks and it is work, but it is worth it. If you can swing it, the cheapest airline travel days are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday.

    The GAME:
    1) Look at airline flights and find the week/days it is cheapest.
    2) Look at Smartervegas.com and see if it parallels affordable hotel rates.
    3) Book you air and room directly!!!! BECAUSE:
    4) If you use SWA (not always the cheapest option), you can later cancel rebook if you find a cheaper SWA flight at NO CHARGE!
    5) If you book direct with CET properties (not sure about Mlife), you can cancel/rebook at the same or another CET property AT NO CHARGE (up to 24hr prior).
    6) Once air and hotel is booked, play the BEAT THAT PRICE GAME by becoming a troll, seeking out better prices as your trip nears.

    We never seem to hit the airline sweet spot days (Tues, Wed, Sat), for we always go to Vegas for 5 nights, Sunday - Thursday (for the reason below), returning home on Friday. We still manage to get good airline prices.

    Room prices are going to be cheapest when:
    1) Sunday through Thursday's
    2) June, July, and August.
    3) There is not a major event going on such as March Madness, Rodeo in December, Major conventions.

    You are doing great by picking May, a little pricier, but soooooooo much worth it. June starts getting really hot, but not extreeme. We did two trips in August, and it was a real roaster. May and mid to end of September are really good times to go.

    Last, I knew everyone was going to chime in, and the places offered are going to vary greatly. When I first saw your post, I said to myself, this poor person is going to opinions that vary greatly and become confused. :evillaugh

    But overall, the majority seem to focus on Hotels in a better location than your original list. Starting South strip and going North, you have.

    1) Excalibur (Budget) (Mlife)
    2) Monte Carlo (a step up) (Mlife)
    3) Ballys (a step up) (Mlife)
    4) Flamingo (Budget or step up, depending on room) (CET)
    5) Quad ?????????? Rooms really bad? (CET)
    5) Harrahs (Budget) (CET)
    6) TI (a step up) (independent)

    What is really going to steer you to a hotel is, where on the strip do you want to be and what do you want to be closet to.

    Example for us. We like Paris, Cosmo, Bellagio, so we are staying at Planet Hollywood. Yes we will venture up to the Linq one day, and down to MGM another, but most of the time, it will be in the general area we venture to the most.

    Last, PLEASE DO NOT go to Vegas with a $100 gambling budget. Read about that on the Gambling Forum. :nono:

    Good luck and be sure to post what you pick. And if you play the BEAT THAT PRICE game, let us know how you did. :thumbsup:
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2014
  16. bignig135

    bignig135 Low-Roller

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    Avoid Circus Circus, it is very run down these days, it is full of kids and very smoky. Positionally, it is only near the Riviera. Depending on prices, the Flamingo is very well situated midStrip. If you stick to your original list, either Luxor or Excalibur are best.
     
  17. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    Of your list Luxor would be best. But if you haven't committed to airfare, perhaps it may be better to shorten the trip so that you can put more of the budget towards the hotel. Going over a weekend raises the hotel cost. Another thing pushing things up would be the number of nights as some hotels would actually pull back on their quote to discourage a longer stay. You could possibly get a better rate splitting your stay between two hotels, with a lesser expensive one over a weekend and a swankier one on the weekdays. I would really hope you could manage to afford a place like Mirage or Paris.
     
  18. ekim15

    ekim15 Tourist

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    We allways stay off strip now. But my sister went a couple years ago staying at T.I. they loved it there. Said the pool was real nice.
     
  19. hornhiyo

    hornhiyo Low-Roller

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    Take the hotel advice offered. My first trip (95) we stayed at Tropicana, when we could have stayed at Mirage for about $20 a night more.

    It seems like a lot when you add it up over the length of the trip, but it's worth staying at a better property. You're choices are all lower end, but more importantly, none of them are convenient to the better areas of the Strip.

    You'll get as good or better rooms at slightly higher rates at Bally's, Flamingo, Monte Carlo or NYNY.

    The only package booking i've done successfully would be Southwest vacations. Other than that, i've always booked cheaper and better by booking separately.
     
  20. hertzer

    hertzer Tourist

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    Fixed it.
     
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