• And receive email notifications of new posts. Its simple just enter your email address and press submit.

  • Next Trip Counter

    Viva Las Vegas!!May 12th, 2016
  • Did You Know?

    • • LV's McCarran International (LAS) is the 8th busiest Airport in the U.S. and number 23 in the world, with 41.7 million passengers
    • • 79 percent of McCarran's departures and 82 percent of arrivals are on time, the average departure delay is 52 minutes and arrival delay is 50 minutes, and cancellations are at 0.6 percent
    • • McCarran Airport is only two to four miles southwest of most Las Vegas Strip hotels
    • • Metered taxi fares to major hotels on the Strip cost approximately $15–$25. A consolidated car-rental center is three miles from the terminal and is accessed by shuttle bus. ScottyVegas always rents a car.
  • My Las Vegas Photos

  • Meta

  • Pages

  • October 2020
    M T W T F S S
     1234
    567891011
    12131415161718
    19202122232425
    262728293031  

Las Vegas Area Thrills by Land and Air

For most, the Las Vegas strip itself offers enough excitement with all its gambling and entertainment possibilities. Plus if you factor in all the colorful characters that inhabit the area, well, do you really need more excitement? But if you’re looking to kick it up a notch and go beyond the usual, you just might find the following off-strip thrills right for you.

Fremont Street Flightlinez

Looking to sample zip-lining? If so, then why not head down to Fremont Street where you can glide 800 feet down Fremont Street, 67 feet in the air, while reaching speeds up to 30 mph. Don’t let the short ride fool you, trust me, it’s a blast. After harnessing up, the leap off the platform takes a little nerve after you realize you’re placing your life in the hands of some nylon straps and a cable!  But once in flight you’ll appreciate this smooth and easy ride, you’ll be glad you did it.

Flightlinez is open daily with rates as low as $15, see website for details.

Tip: While downtown, take a walk around. You’ll find lower table minimums, better blackjack odds, and a variety dining options.

Tip: The American Casino Guide has many coupons for downtown properties. Coupons include food discounts, free Play (slots) and match play (tables) offers

Bootleg Canyon Flightlines

Looking for the ultimate zip-line adventure? Then head 25 miles southeast to Boulder City where you will find multi-run, multi-line series of zip-lines that range in length from 1150 to 2550 feet and speeds that reach 50 mph! The total length of zip-lining fun is 1.56 miles. The cost is $149 (as of this writing) and lasts approximately 2.5 hours.

See Bootleg Canyon Flightlines website for details

Tip: Hoover Dam is only 7 miles from Bootleg Canyon Flightlines or 35 miles from the Las Vegas strip.  Not in a hurry? do a Dam drive by. Have more time? Take the Dam Tour!

Land Sailing

Looking to try something totally different? Well here’s your chance to sail a land yacht (think 3 wheeled cart with a sail) across 6 miles of wide open smooth desert space and reach speeds of 60 mph!! The website claims its “fast, fun, easy & safe – anyone can do it”.

The cost is $125 (as of this writing) for 2 hour regattas. It’s located just 40 miles south of Las vegas (all highway), see the website for details

Tip: Find Go Land Sailing money saving coupons here

I first saw Go Land Sailing advertised on Groupon. After looking it up I instantly became interested as something I would love to try.

Tip: Check out Primm Valley Casino Resorts and Outlet Mall

Primm Valley

If you decide to go land sailing, then why not plan to spend some time at Primm Valley Casinos and the Outlet Mall. After all, the meet up point for the Land Sailing Regatta begins in the outlet mall parking lot.

Primm Valley Casino Resorts and Outlet Mall is located 40 miles south of Las Vegas right off the highway. Though I wouldn’t make a special trip again, the area does offer a variety of attractions to warrant a stop if passing through. Three casino’s make up this area, Buffalo Bill’s, Primm Valley, and Whiskey Pete’s. These locals style casinos do offer lower table minimums with better odds then the Las Vegas strip and buffet food prices are very reasonable.  Surprisingly some quality entertainment visits this complex (check schedule here) and the recently updated room rates are very low.

Primm Valley Area Attractions:

  • Desperado Roller Coaster, Adventure Canyon Log Flume Ride, and other theme park style rides
  • Carolee Movie Theatre
  • 3 Casinos with monorail service to all properties.
  • Famous Fashion Outlets of Las Vegas in Primm. Over 100 Designer Outlets including Polo, Coach, Kenneth Cole and more.
  • Two Golf Courses designed by renowned golf architect Tom Fazio.

As a frequent Las Vegas visitor I always rent a car to do some off strip exploring, usually in the mornings. Rental cars are very reasonable in Las Vegas and once off the strip navigation is rather easy. So if you’re up for a little adventure, get out and explore the other side of Las Vegas!

Check out these other related posts:

Las Vegas Rent A Car Tips
Up, Up and Away! Stratosphere Las Vegas
Pawn Stars in Las Vegas?
Red Rock Canyon Excursion
What is a player’s card? What are comps?

Getting an awesome Las Vegas hotel deal? Don’t forget about the resort fees!

No Resort Fees

It seems these days all Vegas hotels have screaming deals going on. It’s almost daily that I receive emails announcing incredibly low room rates at some of the strips best properties. But as you sit down to compare all the room offers be warned, all deals are not equal.

As the economy started to sputter in 2008 so did Vegas tourism and room rates. To help boost profits many Las Vegas properties started instituting “resort fees”. Though not necessarily new to the hotel business, they are new to Vegas and they range from a buck or two to over 24 dollars per night! The fee is mandatory and surprisingly enough the fee is even taxed at some places.

Note: Some hotels charge tax on resort fees!

So what does the resort fee cover? Well it varies by hotel but usually it covers such things as internet, newspaper, and local phone service. Some offer things such as free bottles of water while others offer fitness center or spa access (limited), so it all varies. But as a general rule higher resort fees usually include more stuff.

Tip: As a general rule higher resort fees usually include more stuff.

Tip: Las Vegas hotel tax is 12%.

When comparing hotels offers you should do a little homework and find out what, if any, resort fees apply and what it covers. That’s where http://www.vegas.com/incl/resortfees.html comes in. This site clearly lists every casino hotel in Vegas with resort fee amount, if any, plus what the fee includes.

For instance, you might be surprised to learn that all Vegas MGM Resort International properties have the mandatory resort fee (as of this writing, fee varies by property) where Caesars Entertainment (formally Harrah’s Entertainment) properties do not. Once you know this you can make a fare comparison. let’s take a look at an example, Say you’re comparing two offers, one from Planet Hollywood (Caesars) for $62/nt and one from Monte Carlo (MGM) for $49/nt,. For many unaware price conscious people, this may seem like a no brainer and choose Monte Carlo, but is it really the better deal? Let’s break it down with what we now know, we said Planet Hollywood was $64 (room rate per night) + $0 (resort fee) x 12% (hotel tax) = $69.44 per night. Now let’s look at the Monte Carlo offer, $49 (room rate per night) + $15 (resort fee) x 12% (hotel tax) = $71.68 per night, almost $2.00 more per night.

Note: All Vegas MGM properties have a mandatory resort fee (as of this writing, fee varies by property).

Tip: None of the Caesars Entertainment (formally Harrah’s Entertainment) properties charge resort fees.

Don’t disregard an offer just because the hotel charges a resort fee. Here are some things to also consider when deciding where to stay:

  • Will you use what the resort fee includes
  • Location
  • Reputation of hotel/reviews
  • Ease of access from room to casino floor/strip/parking garage
  • Free self parking/valet services
  • Pool(s)
  • Clubs
  • Spa services
  • Complementary shuttle service
  • Freeplay/Show offerings
  • Restaurants in your price range/taste near by

Tip: Many hotels charge resort fees even on Complementary rooms, this policy varies by hotel.

I guess it will remain to be seen whether or not resort fees survive after Vegas room rates return to normal levels or if negative press and complaints cause them to be discontinued.

In the mean time do your homework when deciding where to stay, compare offers and hotel amenities before making your decision, then relax.

Here are some other posts you might find helpful:

Free Room Upgrade? Let me introduce you to “The $20 Trick”
Plan on using a cab while in Vegas? Read this first!
Las Vegas Rent A Car Tips
Tips on how to find the lowest hotel rates in Las Vegas
YES drinks are FREE in Las Vegas!
 Advice from the Veterans, Las Vegas Traveler Style…
What would you NEVER do again in Las Vegas?

2011 American Casino Guide and Coupon Book

Here’s a guide no casino enthusiast should be without! It’s loaded with information and COUPONS!! In fact, the cost of the book (under $13 at Amazon) is easily recouped by simply using a coupon or two. On our last trip we used MANY and saved tons. For Example:

  • $25 in FREE slot play at Venetian/Palazzo
  • $10 in FREE slot play for all slot club members at Hard Rock
  • Many table game match plays
  • Lots of food discount coupons
  • 2-for-1 cocktail and VIP entry to V Bar (Venetian)

See the entire coupon list yourself by clicking here.

The book also contains information on just about every casino in the nation like number of rooms, casino size, restaurants, Buffet Prices, and so much more.

Interested? If so, please purchase by clinking here, you pay the same price I make a few cents, we both win! Thank you in advance – ScottyVegas


Las Vegas Porn Slappers or Card Flippers if you prefer..

Las Vegas is a one of a kind place that’s why I and millions of others like to frequent it as much as possible. Sure the strip is home to some of the world’s best hotels, shopping, dining, entertainment, and of course gaming. But did you know it’s also one of the best people watching spots too? Opportunities are abundant just about everywhere you go in the city of sin. But as the sun and temperature starts to go down the freak-o-meter begins to rise.

One unique “freaky” thing to Vegas is the porn slappers or card flippers as their also known. It’s interesting to hear what Vegas virgins have to say after they encounter porn slappers for the first time. In fact, I love watching unsuspecting passerby’s accept a card, look at it with a shocked expression, pass it to the person they’re with, see their shocked expression, then see them both eagerly discuss their unexpected experience.

People who’ve been before are well aware of the special cards low paying Mexican emigrants attempt to hand out to just about everyone who walks past them. The cards are baseball card sized, with pictures of one or more nude woman on them with a slogan such as, a girl to your door for a specific price.

Tip: Be warned the girls on the cards are not the girls who arrive at the door.

See porn slappers in action:

Here are some interesting facts about Las Vegas Porn Slappers:

  • Another name for porn slappers or flippers is hawkers
  • Many slappers work 12 hours a day, seven days a week
  • Surprisingly some flippers are very dedicated as some have distributed their material for over ten years!
  • Pay is low at only about $75 a day, or $6.25 an hour, less than minimum wage.
  • Many flippers are illegal immigrants
  • People who hand out handbills must have a permit to distribute them

Oh and one last thing, in case you get intrigued:

WARNING: Contrary to common belief prostitution is illegal in Las Vegas!

Although illegal inside the city of Las Vegas, prostitution is legal in many surrounding counties. In fact, Nevada is the ONLY US State to have some form of legalized prostitution.

As Gomer Pyle would say:

Surprise..Surprise Surprise….

Check out these other related posts:

Bring your children to Vegas…. NOT!

Plan on using a cab while in Vegas? Read this first!

I can honestly say I’ve only used a cab in Vegas a hand full of times. My preferred method of transportation is by renting a car (see post on Rent a Car Tips). But with that said, using a cab can come in handy. One invaluable time was just a couple of years ago when we found ourselves on the far south end of the strip while we were staying on the far north end and it was after 2:00am. It was cold, we were tired, plus we had our fair share of adult beverages. Then the idea came to mind to use a cab. Hmmmm, walk 30-40 minutes or take an 8 or so minute cab ride? The decision didn’t take long… even though it’s typically against my frugal way to use cabs, I will certainly say that was the BEST $15 spent on that trip.

If you plan on using cabs for your transportation needs, especially if you are new to Vegas or visit infrequently, there are things you should familiarize yourself with, for instance:

Did you know?

  • Most taxicabs in southern Nevada DO NOT accept credit cards as payment
  • Las Vegas Taxi drivers cannot pick up passengers off of the street (flag or hailed ride).
  • Every casino hotel has designated cab pickup/drop-off areas
  • Taxi passengers can only be charged the amount shown on the taxi meter.
  • By law, each cab can only take 5 people, including infants and children.

These are just a few examples from Did You Know, a tip sheet published by the State of Nevada Taxicab Authority. I strongly recommend that you read through it before your next trip, I bet some of them will surprise you.

Taximeter Charges

Here’s a nice quick summary of how the taximeter charges you. (Also taken directly from the Did You Know tip sheet)

When you enter a taxicab, the driver will start the taximeter (referred to as the “drop”) and an initial charge of $3.30 will register. If a taxi ride originates at McCarran international Airport, an additional airport surcharge of $1.80 per trip is added to the taximeter. After the initial “drop”, the taximeter will assess a fare of $2.40 per mile ($.20 for each 1/12th of a mile traveled). If the taximeter senses that the taxicab is moving less than 8-12 MPH, the taximeter will assess a charge of $.20 every 24 seconds ($30.00 per hour waiting time). That is why the taximeter continues to accumulate charges even when the taxicab is not moving. Once the taximeter senses that the taxicab is moving at a speed greater than 8-12 MPH the fare calculates on the actual distance traveled.

Distance Chart

Another page you might find handy, is this chart with approximate minimum fares to various Southern Nevada locations. Use it when planning for your next trip or in helping you decide whether or not to rent a car or other mode of transportation. It covers Taxicab fares and fees along with a chart of approximate charges to/from common destinations.

Tunneling

Every city seems to have cabby scams. One popular scam in Las Vegas is “Getting Tunneled” or “Tunneling” these names refer to when a cabbie picks you up from the airport and takes you “Long Hauls” through a tunnel to I-15 (expressway) to your hotel on the strip. In most cases this is NOT the most direct, quickest, or most cost effective route to take. This practice is actually against the law, which, if caught (and they do), the cab driver will get fined.

So if the cab driver risks getting fined, why do they continue to do it? Simply put the reward outweighs the risk. At about $6 -7 more per trip and the fact that the Taxi Cab Authority has limited staffing the odds quickly jump in the cabbies favor.

Action

So what can you do to avoid being tunneled? Well if you are staying on the strip simply say “No Tunnel” or ask the driver to take the most direct route to your hotel. Feel you been violated? You can file a complaint with the Taxicab Authority at (702) 486-6532 (Staffed 24 hrs.) or online taxi.state.nv.us.

Note: In order for the Taxicab Authority to investigate a complaint, you must include in your statement: Your name, date and time of incident, where it occurred, the cab company and cab number. It is also helpful to include the driver’s name and driver’s Taxicab Authority Permit number if you can get it.

Take a look at this interesting Las Vegas Review Journal Article titled “ILLEGAL CAB PRACTICE” from 2004

REMEMBER: Las Vegas may be called sin city but it is still illegal to drink and drive. So even if you are renting a car don’t be stupid and ruin your trip by taking unnecessary chances, leave those for the tables, walk or better yet take a cab!

Don’t forget to check out these other posts:

Las Vegas Rent A Car Tips


 

When Heading to Vegas Do You Pack Anything Odd?

luggage

Here is another topic that was brought up on the Trip Advisor Las Vegas forum that caught my attention, “Do you pack anything odd”. People are weird, that goes without saying. But some of these replies are crazy! Now I have my quirks and anyone who knows me can certainly confirm this. But really, bringing your own showerhead to Vegas?? Talk about anal retentive! Most of these are just plain wacky but a few are actually good. Read on and believe me I am not making this stuff up.

“I like to bring my teddy bear. Can’t sleep well without it” – Issues?

“flashlights, coffee makers, immersion heaters, Lysol, sheets, showerheads, pillows, blankets, bottles of booze, water, and bags of snacks.” – They forgot to mention their grocery cart to carry all this shit in to the bridge their sleeping under.

“I forget once every other trip and end up buying $15 chapstick that I hate” – I’ve never seen $15 Chapstick and would certainly never pay that amount. FYI – there are many CVS and Walgreens along the strip to buy $1 Chapstick.

“I bring a couple of clothespins to clip the drapes – they always seem to gap and let the sun in.” – Ahhh.. I find this one useful, I hate when that happens

“I always pack my table top fan. I have to have the noise to go to sleep at night.” – at $25 a bag these days…really?

“I always pack my coffee maker, coffee, creamer, sweet and low and a spoon and cup– and I always have my checked bag opened and searched by TSA as a result of this. I guess it looks weird on the X ray machine. I’ve gotten so used to finding that little “love note” in my bag that I now leave the TSA a little love note of my own thanking them for being so vigilant. You always get more flies with honey than with vinegar!” – In case you’re wondering they do sell coffee in Vegas there’s no reason to go through all this trouble.

“soft side collapsible cooler (can be used for extra bag if we buy too much).” – I love this one! Believe it or not, not all rooms (even the high end ones) have refrigerators.

“coasters – I hate wet furniture” – Of all things? Wet furniture is this persons kryptonite

“garbage bag – for my dirty clothes” – I personally use the plastic laundry bag that’s usually on the hanger in the closet

“crystal light single sticks – for a quick cheap drink. Sometimes the soda machine is a mile down the hall and I hate paying $3 for a soda.” – Sure why not and an instant mixer too

“Get the travel underwear, they dry quick. You only need two pair for any length of trip.” – Speechless…. only the acronym WTF comes to mind!!!

“I always bring a Disney world antenna topper for the rental car. Makes your car much easier to spot at the valet.” – If they can’t see their car at valet this person shouldn’t be driving!

“I have mentioned before a flashlight and a roll of duct tape can be a lifesaver in a hotel fire. the duct tape is to seal the door from smoke.” – This person acts as if hotel fires are a common occurrence… but then again, I hope this guy is in the adjoining room on my next visit

Personally I bring extra socks. You never know when you’ll lose one. 🙂

Have anything odd you would like to share? Feel free to post them in the comments below.

(Remember, keep it clean Coburn!)