A couple of weeks ago my boyfriend and I took a four day trip to Las Vegas. To be honest, it is probably the first big trip that I have planned and paid for all by myself since graduating college and I was so excited. Saving money for this trip was easy, and I break down how you can do it in this post!
Since this blog is all about saving money, part of that including traveling, I thought I would show you how I did. Coming up in some future blog posts I would like to break down the individual processes of how I pick things as well. But for now here is an overview of my trip and an estimate of how much it cost. Enjoy!
For each category I will have totals, and remember that these are the totals for two people, not one!
Airfare to Vegas
So usually the big ticket item on a trip out of town in the plane ticket. We purchased ours in February for a May trip. To get the cheapest flight, we were pretty flexible in the weekend we decided to go. After playing around with some options, a Saturday-Tuesday trip seemed to be the cheapest option with a weekend included (I wanted to save some vacation time and only take two days off of work).
We decided to fly Southwest for a couple of reasons. One, my boyfriend has a rewards card with points he could redeem for his flight. So he already knew that was the airline he was going to go with. I on the other hand do not have any rewards points, so I was open to any options within my price range.
After looking, Frontier had the cheapest fares. I have never flown Frontier, but my boyfriend has and even said he had a good experience. However I am still skeptical about the whole thing (I have seen tons of bad reviews, it has to be cheap for a reason, right?) Still I considered it before I had a major realization. Frontier charges for bags (whether you check or carry on, so be careful if you do fly with them!) So even if I had a carry on for a bag, I would be paying $35 each way, for a total of $75 the entire trip. That plus the ticket price was actually more than a Southwest ticket, who has free baggage (carry on and one checked bag free).
So I went with Southwest!
Total for Flight and Bags:
Of course the next most important detail is the hotel. My boyfriend has been to Vegas several times, and is a part of a rewards club. He had gotten an email offering a free hotel stay at one of a few select hotels in Las Vegas.
(the view from our room)
So we looked through the list and decided to go with the LINQ Hotel. We were able to get the Deluxe King room and a view overlooking the Ferris wheel (the biggest in the world). While the room was free, we had to pay a fee for some things like the internet, which was $30 a day.
Total for Hotel:
Thankfully we stayed in the middle of the Las Vegas strip, so most of what we wanted to do was within walking distance. However there were sometimes where transportation was necessary. For those instances we used Uber. We used Uber four separate rides: to and from the airport, as well as to and from one of the shows we went to.
Total for Transportation:
When in Vegas, you have to go to a show. We chose to go to Penn & Teller (amazing, by the way!) Buying the tickets the day of (found on this website) saved $10-$20 on each ticket, so we got each one for about $61.50 plus applicable fees.
We also decided to go on the High Roller Ferris Wheel. It is the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, and it was right next to our hotel – I couldn’t say no to that. Tickets are normally $37 a person, but when I signed up for the rewards program at the casino we stayed at I got a coupon for 2 for 1 ride! It was a great surprise because we were already planning on doing it, but it was cheaper now.
Other than that we spent out stay just walking around from casino to casino looking at themes and great displays, which of course was free.
(beautiful flowers at the Bellagio Conservatory – free to view!)
Total for Entertainment:
Of all the activities we did in Vegas, food was probably the most expensive.
Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar
We got some trash can brisket nachos to share and each got our own burger.
$61.50 + tip
Wicked Spoon Buffet
I had heard so much about this buffet and had to try it – and it did not disappoint. Weekend brunch was $36 a person.
Hash House a Go Go
Decided to try this place since it was located in our hotel and it was fantastic! I got the Tractor Driver combo – a HUGE red velvet pancake, bacon, and eggs. And my boyfriend got the Sage Fried Chicken Benedict (one of the things they are known for).
$30.98 + tip
Gordon Ramsay Burger
We stopped in here mid-day after doing some walking around town. We weren’t too hungry, so we split the Hells’ Kitchen burger – and it was possibly the best burger I have ever had.
$15 + tip
Virgil’s Real Barbecue
Walked past this place late at night and it smelled so good we decided to go in. Got the pig out platter with ribs, mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, and corn bread. Yummy!
$24.38 + tip
Cravings Buffet – The Mirage
We ended the trip with a simple buffet. We went during the weekday brunch for $20.99. For the price, this was a great value. Plenty of options to choose from and there was no crowd or lines to deal with.
Total for Food:
Of course we did some gambling and bought souvenirs, but I am not going to include all of that since it was unnecessary and just what we decided to do.
Also I mentioned a few times that we used a rewards program throughout this trip and it helped so much! This is how we got the hotel for so cheap, and got various coupons. We also got free tickets to a show, and two free drink tickets we could use at various casinos. I highly suggest signing up when you get there if you haven’t already. It will help for the current trip as well as future ones.
So for hotel, airfare, food, transportation, and entertainment we spent a total of $865.89 on the trip total for two people. Under $1000 total for a four day trip is not too bad in my book!
I think my first trip planned was a success and actually probably cheaper than expected. Eating big meals once a day saves tons of money. Also, being a part of a rewards program certainly helped with the costs, and I highly recommend to anyone going to Vegas.
What trip are you planning in the upcoming months and how do you plan to save money?