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Vegas vacation HNL - LAS - Info for Hawaii islanders

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by makikiboy, Dec 22, 2020.

  1. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    My Trip Report

    Wanted to give the people from Hawaii some info on going on vacation to vegas.

    There was only one flight to LAS from HNL and back. I flew out from HNL to LAS on 12/4. 11:35 am flight. arrived in vegas around 7:45. Returned home to HNL on 12/9. 7 am (or so) flight. arrived in HNL around 11:30 am.

    Luckily I was pualani gold so was able to get a free upgrade to the economy plus seats (seems like at least 1 foot more leg room so very comfortable). I was also lucky that I didn't have anyone sitting next to me both ways so I got to stretch out. It looked like the economy seats in back were all taken so it was a full flight going to vegas. Note: they now board the plane from the back first (except for first class).

    On the flight they only served canned soda or bottled water (not sure if they served liquor). They provided a meal, somewhat like a hot pocket, ham or chicken parm I think. Unlike normal times it seemed like the flight attendants didn't have a lot to do so they were hanging out in the galley area for much of the flight.

    After arriving in vegas I took the airport shuttle to the rental center. Got there around 8 pm and most of the agencies were all closed. I had a reservation with Thrifty but they were closed and I had to go to dollar to get the paperwork done. They tried to get me to pay for an upgrade but I declined but they gave me a free upgrade anyway. But the rental was for Hertz so I got a Hertz car. BTW, noticed that advantage rent a car was no longer in the facility, replaced by Sixt. Sixt across the street is also closed down.

    Stayed at the Cal. The 3 main entrances on the 1st floor all had someone giving a temperature check at the door. You stood on a line and their camera automatically measured your body temp (you had to lower your mask). The door to MSS on the 2nd floor walkway was closed and locked. Aloha specialties was open for dinner only (later heard that they are now closed). Lapperts was also closed so no snacks. The noodle house and redwood grill were also closed. Market St. Café only served dinner (5 to midnight on weekends). No breakfast so I had to walk to the Plaza to get breakfast from McD's. Heard that Market St. café now open for breakfast.

    I brought along a whole container of sanitizing wipes so I wiped everything I was in contact with. On the plane, in my room, bathroom and everything in both rooms, I even had a small container of wipes so I wiped the machines before I touched and played them. I bought a small UV light and I used it on the sheets and under the sheets. Not sure if it really works but I felt a little more comfortable doing it.

    The casino was like a morgue. Only a handful of people playing on the machines. Tables open from 2 pm and stayed open to 9pm on weekdays, midnight on weekends. The crap table only held 8 players, 4 on each side. BJ tables only held 3-4 people max. All $10 min tables downtown. The tables all had plexiglass to separate the players from each other and the pit crew. The players card service center had limited hours (closed at 9-10 pm) so was a problem when I lost my player's card one night.

    I did my regular things I do in vegas. Visit Trader Joes to pick up stuff, Harbor Freight, the 99 cent stores (dollar general, dollar tree, 99 cent store). Also visited the galleria shopping mall (dicks sporting goods), golf galaxy, meadows mall too. Went to Southpoint, Orleans and Gold coast to gamble. Also visited the downtown casinos, even visited the Circa. Nice but I wouldn't gamble there ($15 min tables and up, not in my price range).

    The shopping centers weren't very busy but the popular stores like bath & body works and Victoria secret had lines waiting out the door since they could only have a limited number of people inside.

    I was able to make my covid appointment before I flew out of Honolulu. Taking the test was easy, they took your temperature when you entered (MSS, the room next to the parking structure) and did the nasal swab. Got my test results the next morning (24 hour turnaround).

    Even though I'm considered "at risk" (I have diabetes) I didn't feel unsafe in vegas. I just tried to stay away from crowds. Only one time I felt unsafe. I was at the 99 cent store and someone was right behind me at the checkout line. I tried to give the hint that he should step back and socially distance but he still stood next to me so I moved to the side. Didn't help that he was coughing all the time, made me feel uncomfortable.

    The FSE on a Saturday night was a place to avoid. I swear that at least 25% of the people didn't wear masks or didn't wear them properly and didn't socially distance. Most of them were the younger ones or the "redneck" types (you know what I mean, sorry if I generalize or used the wrong terminology). Security checked people when entering the FSE but as soon as they passed they removed or lowered their masks. No wonder vegas still has a problem with covid.

    I wore a mask everywhere. I only took off the mask in my hotel room, in the car and when I was eating. I also tried to stay away from crowds and groups of people.

    Flying back to HNL was mundane. You just have to remember to complete the safe travels app completely so you get a QR code before you arrive in HNL. I didn't know how to do that. I just uploaded my negative test results but didn't know I had to complete the health questionnaire and trip information to get the QR code. Because of that it took an extra half hour to get out of the airport. You also need a tablet or laptop to complete the safetravels process but they will also let you use their tablets if you don't have one (expect a long wait as others will do the same).

    Overall it was a good, relaxing trip for me. Since the tables closed early and not much was open after midnight I got a lot of sleep. I felt relatively as safe as I do in Honolulu. Would I do it again? Probably not (unless I can guarantee I get a economy plus seat with the next seat open), will probably wait until I get the vaccine shot so won't be back to vegas until March or April. But I had to cancel my March 2020 vegas trip, HA gave me a voucher and I had to use it by the end of the year so what the heck. I also had a 4 night comp so other than the rental car and Covid test ($90) I didn't spend a lot on the trip.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
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  2. smerrian

    smerrian View from Bally's

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    Thanks for the synopsis. LV sounds to be just as I thought.
     
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  3. WDMJB

    WDMJB Low-Roller

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    We just canceled out NYE plans with Vacations Hawaii. We have a 6th generation back up plan for March 30. Hopefully it’ll get better. Thank you for the insight
     
    For the 9th time....
  4. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    I mentioned this on another thread. This is unconfirmed but when I was in vegas, I spoke with one of the pit crew. He said that the Vacations Hawaii charters will not start up until March at the earliest. This is because of the 14 (now 10) day quarantine rules when returning back in Hawaii. Vacations Hawaii flies Omni air so not in the loop about using the Hawaiian Air covid testing at MSS so right now no guarantee that charter passengers can get 72 hour turnaround for covid tests.

    Of course this March date is fluid and dependent on vaccines and whatever happens back in Hawaii. Best to check with the Vacations Hawaii web site for when they will start back up. Again note that this is all unconfirmed so no real idea about the charters or when they will start back up.
     
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  5. Ty

    Ty ?

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    Nice write-up, thanks for posting.
     
    First Trip of 2021
  6. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    Just FYI, I saw a Vacations Hawaii ad in our local newspaper this morning. The fine print in the ad says that they will be starting up their HNL - LAS charters starting on March 1 but again this depends on covid restrictions in Hawaii. But it sounds like they are starting to take reservations for March starting in January.
     
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  7. chinlover

    chinlover Tourist

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    Thank you for taking the time and posting. We usually stay at the Cal for part of our trips so good to know the latest restaurant and casino info.