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My Slow Incline/Decline

Discussion in 'Misc. Vegas Chat' started by sco5123, Jan 21, 2014.

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  1. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    My frugality has come to a screeching halt I noticed. Most weekday dates for the Quad in May have stayed at $80-90 range (after resort fees) and as I have mentioned before, I simply can not justify it.

    Ironically, this formerly super duper low roller here is being thrown $79 nights at Aria, 2-night comps at Cosmo, and $50 nights at MGM with $50 resort credit, etc. Naturally, I find myself climbing to higher heights of hoteldom because the price, at least in this market, is justifiable for my sensibilities.

    These hotels, however, come with more expensive food, high resort fees and incidentals and other high-priced luxuries. I am excited about this new world that I have felt forced into. But it's not likely for me to stay in it too long...at least not the way I want to.

    You see, I have a thing for the Strip. Before, I would stay downtown or off-strip to save a buck especially on weekends but now I am so spoiled I just always want to be surrounded by the strip atmosphere (although I still do take the occasional downtown comp or Gold Coast rate). But I like long...I mean lonnng trips (minimum of 1.5 weeks). The two desires don't mesh well.

    I used to take 3-4 night stays and then one random trip of 2 weeks changed all of that. However this upcoming trip is turning out to be one of the most expensive yet. Pull back is inevitable.

    Moreover, I have since gotten a taste for eating expensive (relative to myself) meals like....everyday. Expensive being $20-30/meal...although I tend to eat once. My buffets of yesterday and Mcds and Mermaids are few and far between.

    I am not sure how to operate in shorter trips anymore because as I remember them, I run around like a chicken with its head cut off and leave Vegas ravenously (lol) craving another trip. With longer trips, I take my time and leave "full", casually awaiting the next adventure. How do I begin the trek to scale back?
     
  2. RockyBalboa

    RockyBalboa VIP Whale

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    Interesting question in regards to scaling back.

    I look at it like gambling levels. When we first went to Vegas I'd never gambled in a casino other than slots here and there. I would bet sports online but that was about it and with minimal financial exposure.

    However with each trip out to Vegas I have increased my bankroll to higher levels. I have gone from buying in at the craps table for $100 and playing a $6-12 6 & 8 with passline and double odds to buying in for $500-$1000 and being comfortable on a $15 table. Seeing how much I can win on a hot roll at the $15+ level makes me think if I'd ever enjoy playing at my previous level. Would I enjoy the wins or would I think "crap, I could have made triple this amount had I played bigger!"

    Would you still enjoy yourself at a lower tier property and munching on Mickey D's or would you be longing for a room at the Wynn and a nice full course meal?
     
  3. paperposter

    paperposter VIP Whale

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    the quad is no longer there cheap hotel , harrahs is , with the linq openning rates will only be going up ,people where spolied.

    people booking the quad now dont know about ip they will see a new renovated property it wont matter to them, new cleintel, the 20 year olds will eat up the location and price

    book off season after new years between ces . you will have to picker for cheaper rates.

    i cant wait till the linq and the renovations are done way over do.
     
  4. RockyBalboa

    RockyBalboa VIP Whale

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    Even Harrah's and Bally's are creeping up in the pricing.

    I checked for my Super Bowl and March Madness trips and they both were in the high $100's to mid-$200's. My comps dried up at CET since I haven't been out there in awhile, but apparently that is what the market will support now.

    I checked MLife and can get Aria and Mirage all in for $400 on the reduce rate generic offer.
     
  5. paperposter

    paperposter VIP Whale

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    those are some of the hardset wekends for comps you picked.

    the casinoso have a pecking order
     
  6. RockyBalboa

    RockyBalboa VIP Whale

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    Understood. I have stayed at both comped in the past on SB weekend and I am staying at Palazzo comped for this SB.

    What I was saying is what the rates are right now.
     
  7. Polemarch28

    Polemarch28 Tourist

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    Great thread.

    First off, I don't know how you scale back. I typically go for 3 days. No more, no less. Why? Because I burn through my bankroll too quickly to stay longer than that. I enjoy great meals, entertainment, and do whatever I want for 3 days. I'm not sure it's healthy for me to burn through more than that!

    But as for scaling back from the finer things, I think it's just a matter of how you define or appreciate your Vegas experience. For me, it's about freedom, so I'd say that anything which constrains your freedom should be eliminated in favor of things that increase it. If you find that your new acclimation to pricier digs is holding you back from being able to afford the length of trip you prefer, then that's your answer. I would just challenge you on whether or not a week-long trip would be substantially different than a week and a half. Perhaps by cutting off a couple days, you'd be better positioned to afford the finer things, without feeling like they compromise your wallet or more importantly your freedom.
     
  8. LolaDoggie

    LolaDoggie VIP Whale

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    Necessity is the mother of invention. If you had to scale back, you would. You know how. You know you'll have a good time on any budget. It might never be the way it was when you were younger, which is fine.
     
  9. jackincols

    jackincols Guest

    Sadly, the length of my trips are based on one thing...airfare! (and of course gambling budget) Used to be 3-4 nights were ideal and I would try to get to Vegas 3 times a year. Now, with the outrageous flight prices, it's only twice a year but for 5-6 nights.
     
  10. waverunner

    waverunner BBHMM

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    4 nights at the Quad (including resort fees) is $80 for the whole 4 nights? Is that what you're saying? In other words, you're getting comped for 4 nights at the Quad and paying $20 a night in resort fees?
    I am the King of frugality. What is the problem with paying $20 a night in a major hotel in the middle of the Strip?
    I always stay for 5 nights and 3 times a year Sun-Fri, i get comped at the Quad, Harrah's, Flamingo, and Bally's every week of the year. I booked Bally's again for May 2014 free with the resort fees of $100 for 5 nights. I am at the low end of the totem pole by being Gold. I have been going to Vegas since the 70's.........never has Vegas been cheaper (at least as far as rooms) than it is now.
    I love being frugal, i love free rooms, i take the free shuttle from Bally's to Gold Coast or Orleans, i use my free "G" card to get a buck off of my already low $8 buffet, sometimes i'll see a free show in the afternoon, you can get cheap all you can eat pasta at Planet Hollywood, you can get a meal at FSM for a buck or two less than at the same place elsewhere on the Strip, you can use Tix4Tonight to see a show at half price, etc.etc.
    I love my FREEdom......LOL.
    "sco"............you don't have to scale back, just do what i do.......stay 5 nights mid week 2-3 times a year, use the TR rate calender to get free rooms, eat off strip for buffets (i prefer a late lunch/early dinner instead of having 3 meals), use your RW credits for snacks to round out the day. Vegas is and has been the cheapest destination you will probably stay in compared to other cities.
    We frugalites welcome frugality at it's finest..........please join us.....LOL.
     
  11. hammie

    hammie VIP Whale

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    Use more coupons, Groupon, Restaurant.com, play My Vegas, I think CET even has a similar Facebook game. My mom used to say "I know what nice is", so once your standard has risen, it becomes difficult to accept anything less. Nice is a relative term, an Econo Lodge is a step up for one used to camping. The Mansion at MGM with a Butler may be the standard for someone else.

    Making choices is about managing expectations. Something's gotta give.

    When traveling solo for business, my needs are minimal, as I pay for all my expenses out of my pocket. So I was able to stay 3 nights at the Riviera on a marketing offer, one night at a reduced rate, and a Saturday night at the Super 8 next to Ellis Island (Free airport shuttle and curiosity) for about $200.

    So when traveling with my spouse, she knows what nice is and we stayed three nights at the Excalibur as a convenience since we were with another couple. When they left, we checked into the Vdara and spent time in Bellagio. So this has become the standard to which future trips will be measured.
     
  12. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    The analogy of gambling levels is a great one. The truth is that not only can I still enjoy the Quad-life (Mcds included), I actually prefer it. Saving a dollar makes me feel good inside. And I am usually on the move so I technically eat even "nicer" meals in a bit of a rush.

    The Quad-life fits my style perfectly. Nevertheless, I like elegance and luxury. And if the Quad-life (apart from food, entertainment, etc) costs the same in price, I will spring for better.

    However, I am picky about even my low-end properties. I need a cheerful room--I think that is always my strongest concern. I hope to try out places like RIviera in the future.

    I also like myvegas still for Casino Tower room in Circus Circus. Contemporary room in Excalibur is the one I like and it comes up to $60 including resort fees. My favorite CC room runs about $70 bucks after resort fees as it is the highest room. Riviera is a reasonable $40-50 after resort fees so I just hope it's a cheerful room. Strangely it's the higher-end properties right now sending me the deals (which they rarely did before).

    Between $70 (after resort fees) at MGM offer and $70 at CC rate, I think there is not much competition. Before, for me, Excalibur was a splurge because it had resort fees where Quad did not. Sure, Excalibur was affordable and always within budget (as is any of the hotels mentioned) but it was my more expensive-frugal splurge.

    My eyes light up when I enter Excalibur every time. Quad and Excalibur were king for me. Low rates, on-strip, make me delighted.

    With myvegas, it's almost February and no dates have come out for May. I am even wondering if they are trying to end the game. MyVegas makes Excalibur very affordable--the way Quad once was. In the time, I am locking down rates in better properties, offering me better deals than some of the lower-end properties are offering me.

    I would definitely love the Quad-life but deals are not forthcoming. In the future, if this stays the same, I will be shortening my trip and I hope the quality of the trip does not become diminished. The price of flights have also played a role in taking longer trips.

    Certainly, necessity will push me into a corner to make a decision. I am thinking, if it keeps up, I will choose some version of high-end frugal lifestyle. But the length will be greatly shortened.

    I have not received comps on the CET calendar since late 2011 but I only wish my track record of staying and not playing did not take so long to drop off. So I just continue to stay and not play...and get no comps.

    There was a time I played a few hundred and I received nothing so I stopped caring. And I realized I would rather not be obligated to play any how. I notice too that paying for all my hotels takes away from the money I could be dropping to get comps...but I am certain I would not (1) get enough comps to cover most of my trip and (2) desire to play enough to keep those comps. Great tips though about off-strip buffets!
     
  13. aliasyoshi

    aliasyoshi Low-Roller

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    This is me to a "T", just ask my wife. As I get into my 30's, I find I do enjoy finer things more than even 5-10 years ago. However, I still am at the point where saving money overrules paying for finer things if I am satisfied with less. In Vegas, I can still spend very little money relative to the entertainment and enjoyment I receive for the price. If/when that changes, I will re-evaluate Vegas. I pray that day never comes. :cry:
     
  14. LolaDoggie

    LolaDoggie VIP Whale

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    What aliasyoshi said. I think it comes down to priorities.

    I've adjusted my budget upwards for different things for different reasons. I need a better location now, that's more money. We also rent a car for the whole trip now, so add that. I like to visit the spa at least once, that's not free. Airfare has gone up considerably and my dates are less flexible because of my husband's schedule now, also more money. My husband insists on going to a "good" headliner show each trip, also not free. We gamble a little more now. Not no rollers anymore, but still micro rollers.

    Holy crap! I've lost my fricken mind! I gotta scale this sh!t back!

    It's OK. In my mind we're still OK because we use a lot of coupons and hardly gamble. We're also saving more on food since we discovered low roller food options are perfectly OK (see my signature). I'm going to try some even more low roller food options next time. I think Vegas is still an awesome value for money. Vegas really does have something for every body; all interests and budgets.
     
  15. xizor

    xizor Tourist

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    Sco are you travelling solo? I ask because I have found in my experience when I go to Vegas alone I tend to naturally scale back on dining and shows and rooms.
    Of course the gambling budget does tend to inflate when I'm there solo but not enough to make it a wash.
     
  16. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Sco, you'll find your equilibrium. I know you like to plan and obsess -- nothing wrong with that -- but every once in a while it makes sense to let go and just let stuff happen. Some of our best travel experiences have been a starting and ending date, a flight in and a flight out of some place, and then just filling it all in as we went along.
     
  17. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    Excellent points about the value for the entertainment. For $200, I will be seeing a Boyz II Men concert, the Billboard awards, Hitzville and Jabbawockeez. That's an average of $50 and I get to see lots of celebrities and their performances! I used to live near New York City so I know what a value that is! Entertainment is one of the biggest draws of Vegas for me.

    I mustn't forget that I will also see 3 free comedy and hypnosis shows by getting coupons as well as $15 tickets to a production show on the strip. Add in those 4 more shows and that average now falls to $27 average per ticket. Delicious.

    I am also solo and use all the deals I can find (for the right room)! It's true that it comes down to priorities. Clearly gambling is not a priority for me personally. I have drastically decreased my bankroll since I stopped caring about comps. Because of this, I have a much more free, spacious budget for other things.

    I definitely hope to pull back from the food budget and limit things to 4-5 nice meals per trip (note: anything over $15 bucks is "nice", i.e. expensive, to me lol). While I enjoy the different food, I am not much a foodie. I can eat the exact same thing for a month and see no difference.

    I am sure one day I will let go and not obsess. I wonder what that day will look like. I am sure it will be an enjoyable experience. But I love the scheduling/planning. In a few more trips, I am sure to reach equilibrium!
     
  18. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Planning and obsessing are mutually exclusive. One is fun, one is a medical condition.

    :evillaugh
     
  19. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    Glad I am in good company.
     
  20. stackinchips

    stackinchips High-Roller

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    I get my trip pretty much completely comped now, excluding airfare. However, before that was the case, I also went through a phase where I went from being fine with low end joints like Harrah's to where I'm strictly a Mirage(Location)/Wynncore/Bellagio guy now. For a while I had a couple moments where I tried to justify the extra expense vs. taking the cheaper or comp option. However, what I came to realize, is that even for someone not getting comped, Vegas is an incredible value. I can spend 4 nights at the Wynn, and it will run me around a 500-600 dollars. That's paying rack rate (admittedly not during a big event or weekend but still). I have all ranges of dining options that are world class, great show options, great sites to see, and plenty of activities to keep me busy. If I were to travel to San Francisco, New York, Chicago, LA, etc., and I were to stay at a place equivalent to the Wynn, I'd be out 1200-1600 dollars just for my room.

    Everyone has different standards and preferences for accommodations in Vegas, and some care more about saving money for other items than their room, but the bottom line is that whether you're staying at Wynncore, Harrah's, or somewhere in between, you're getting an excellent value when you compare that to an equivalent property anywhere else in the country.
     
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