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Las Vegas on a Budget

Home > Las Vegas > Accommodation | Misc | Nightlife
by Karen (subscribe)
Published October 6th 2011
Las Vegas; The city synonymous with glitz and excess.
Once the home of the $2.99 buffet, Las Vegas has done its best to move away from its once budget image and has gone all out with fancy suites and celebrity chefs. A burger here can set you back $777 and the Forum Tower Emperors Suite at Ceasars Palace can run you around $4300 for a Saturday night. But what if you don't want to sell your car to pay for a meal or mortgage the house for a weekend away?
Ceasars Palace

Circus Circus

It is still possible to 'do' Vegas on a budget. Sites such as Expedia,, Priceline, and Hotwire can get you a room from around $22 midweek to around $60 on the weekend. Many of the hotels themselves also offer specials by booking direct. Bills Gambling Hall, Ballys and Excalibur are just a few that offer great value rates.
The turretts of Excalibur

The Deuce will let you move around town when your feet are so sore they couldn't possibly take another step, and drinks are still on the house while you are playing a slot machine or betting at the tables.
Fremont Street

For a cheap night out away from the Las Vegas Strip, take the bus to the Downtown area and see the Fremont Street Experience.
Fremont Street Experience

Shown on a huge canopy 90 feet in the air, and 5 blocks long, is a light and music show that stops people in their tracks. Between shows, you can safely wander between the casinos while watching a live cover band and the many dress up characters in one of the most highly police patrolled places in Clark County.

A decent cheap dinner can be had at Magnolias or how about a shrimp cocktail for only $1.99? Drinks are cheaper downtown too and some even say the slots are looser.

Heading back to the strip, why not grab a $1 frozen cocktail (available in lime or strawberry) at the Casino Royale before heading across the street to grab some more free entertainment.

The Bellagio Fountains should not be missed. Whether you want to pretend you are one of Ocean's Eleven or share a nice moment with that someone special, the fountains and the accompanying music really do feel all about Vegas. The Bellagio is also home to the Conservatory which is free and also well worth a visit.

The Sirens Show out the front of Treasure Island, or TI as it prefers, is a little cheesey and not exactly a 'must see' but it is free and right in the centre strip area.

While you are there, you can see the Mirage volcano erupt every 60 minutes and then take a walk through the Forum Shops to see the living statues at Ceasars Palace.
M&M's World

At the Southern end of the strip you can watch the free M&M's show in 3D, visit the MGM lions habitat and the cobbled New York streets at New York New York.
The MGM Grand

If you walk across the overpass bridge to Excalibur, you can then catch the free monorail to the Eqyptian themed Luxor and the relative luxury of Mandalay Bay.

Mandalay Bay

The North strip area offers the very classy Wynn/Encore hotel and casino compound which has minimal to offer the budget visitor but you may want to check out the beautiful gardens.
Wynn and Encore

The faded Slots-A-Fun is down there too, where you can grab a cheap hotdog and a drink to tide you over until breakfast. Live circus acts are performed nightly, at the Circus Circus Midway, upstairs over the gaming floor, which while free are priced just about right so don't plan your whole night around them.

So, they are some of the less expensive ideas that I know of in Vegas. Do you have any to share?
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Why? 'Cause its Vegas Baby
Where: Las Vegas, Nevada
Cost: From free to over the top
Great article Karen. Amazing place indeed. I went to Vegas by myself about 2 years ago for 4 days. Not nearly enough time, but I stayed at Caesars Palace and saw Bette Midler's last performance there. Everyone should go - at least once in their lives.
By Dora Bona - senior reviewer
Thursday, 17th of November @ 03:35 am
Thanks Dora,
I have been 3 times, and am going back again in 6 months time, and I still have not seen even a fraction of what there is to see.
By Karen - senior reviewer
Thursday, 17th of November @ 04:05 am
Don't forget Treasure Island boat show. I've been heaps of times (mostly for work) and always had a great time without spending a lot of money.
By Where I Holiday - senior reviewer
Friday, 16th of November @ 06:04 am
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