The Las Vegas Strip at Night. (Image:

The Las Vegas Strip at Night. (Image:

One: It’s Not Closer Than You Think

While you may walk from one side of Manhattan to the other, with ease, don’t expect the same thing in Vegas. Manhattan is just over 2 miles wide and the Vegas strip is 4 miles. Seriously, it is a stretch from one end to the other and you are in the desert so it is hotter than Hades. The beautiful pictures from the strip make it appear as though MGM is a regular ole hotel – casino, but the reality is it is mammoth.

So put that in perspective when thinking about walking from one casino to the other. Take advantage of the Tram that goes between many of the hotels. Plan out your trip to the best of your ability before you head out. Make sure you embrace comfort over appearance. There will be plenty of time to get dolled and spruced up before going down for cocktails.

Two: Dress For Comfort and Pack Light

Visitors to Vegas always imagine that they are going to have time to get gussied up for the night on the town, or they want to be certain to hold their own against Paris Hilton or Jay Z. But the truth is you only have so many hours in a day and the last thing you want to do is to spend too much time in your room. Besides which, there is the most amazing shopping in the world. Wait and pick up your night on the town wear right there in Vegas. Better to leave with more than you came with.

Three: Wear Comfortable Shoes

No matter who you are, you will want to protect your feet. Think of it as preparing for a marathon. Would you wear 3-inch heels or a pair of pointy-toed cowboy boots to run the Vegas Marathon? Probably not, so dress for comfort. It is not unusual to see women walking outside on the street with Sketchers and then suddenly they have their 4 inch Christian LouBoutins on in the casino. Even if you are staying put in your hotel-casino for the duration, you are talking about an immense amount of walking.

Four: Avoid the Unavoidable

The “unavoidables” are all over the place in Vegas. From the people who line the streets passing out everything, from anti-gambling groups, to strip club gnomes, they are everywhere. The best suggestion is to avoid them. Don’t make eye-contact, never take anything from them, even if they try to push it into your hand.

Keep your hands tightly wrapped in your pocket or holding onto your purse if you have to. Another way to avoid them is to use the tram, plan out your trip, walk through the hotel – casinos when you can. One additional unavoidable to avoid, don’t spend the first or last of your gambling dollars at the airport. The RTP (return to player)  is not very high and you don’t get any perks for playing.

Don't spend the first or last of your winnings at the airport. (Image:

Don’t spend the first or last of your winnings at the airport. (Image:

 Five: Money Matters!

Number Five may be the biggest area of concern when going to Vegas because money matters. So, to keep with the theme of Five, here are the Five Money Matters to be aware of when traversing to Vegas:

  1. Tip your valet, housekeeper, cocktail servers, bellhop and be certain to tip restaurant waitstaff even if you are getting all of it for free. Valet consider $2 to $5. Housekeeping $5 a day. Cocktail Servers if it is free at least $1, if you are paying, then base it on the service and the tab. Restaurant waitstaff is minimum 15%, with typical being 20%.
  2. Eat free whenever and wherever you can. Happy hour is available for both libations and food. Check with your casino concierge and casino host to see if you qualify for any comps.
  3. Use free transportation whenever possible, the tips and fees will add up over time.
  4. Unless you are only staying for one day, pace your play. Take breaks from the table or slots now and then so that you don’t blow it all in one day. There are so many free things to do in Vegas, so enjoy.
  5. Choose hotels that are giving the best deals on the strip. Some really nice hotels are close to free. But don’t just assume the best and biggest are the most expensive. You’d be surprised.