Las Vegas is known as the entertainment capital of the world, so a good time to visit is truly, anytime! The best time for travel, however, would be from March to May as well as September to November. While Nevada boasts favorable temperatures year-round, flights to Las Vegas sell fast during peak tourist seasons. However, in most cases, you can find relatively cheap flights to Las Vegas. The reason spring and fall are the more desirable times for Las Vegas is that the weather is warm, but not grueling hot. In the spring, you can expect temperatures to range from 17 to 26 degrees Celsius. Fall is hotter, with temperatures going over 35 degrees Celsius. It starts to cool off again to an average of 20 degrees Celsius by November. Even at night, you can walk around without a jacket and enjoy invigorating weather.
To fly to Las Vegas, you will have direct international flights from WestJet and Air Canada. Other airlines leaving Canada for Las Vegas include Aeromexico, United Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Airlines, Alaska Airlines, and Copa Airlines.There are others offering cheap international flights to Las Vegas, but these often require multiple stops, lengthy layovers, and limited amenities during the flight.
McCarran Airport has plenty of travel options that will take you to the famous Vegas Strip.
Buses leave from the South Terminal and from there, you can transfer to a public transportation bus known as “Deuce”, which travels up the Strip and goes as far as Binions on Freemont Street.
Cabs are another viable option for Las Vegas transportation. Taxis are often waiting outside terminals, but lines are long during peak travel times. There is a $1.20 USD airport surcharge to use a taxi, but costs for travel to hotels average $10 – $20 USD depending on where in the city centre you are headed. Avoid taking the tunnel, because it will cost extra.
Shuttle Buses and Limousines
Shuttle buses and private limousine services are also available, but require a prior reservation. On the west side of the baggage claim through exits 7 to 13, you will find shuttles. Shuttle rides are $6 USD for one-way and $12 USD for a round trip. Downtown hotels are $8 USD one-way and $15 USD roundtrip. Call in advance to book a car or shuttle, because the wait time could be an hour or longer without prior reservations. Hotels and casinos have shuttles to their resort, but not back to the airport.
Car rentals are ideal in a place like Vegas, because if you plan to visit areas outside the Strip, you will not have as much public transportation as you would normally see in other major metropolitan cities. Renting from the airport will get you cheaper rates, but you will encounter shuttle fees from the rental parking lot back to the airport. If you are looking for great deals on car rentals , book ahead with momondo.
Exploring the Strip requires nothing more than a comfortable pair of shoes. You can get a feel for the neighbourhood and the casinos that clutter along the streets. Most resorts are just a few feet from each other.
Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) offers 51 bus routes for those who need to get out of the Strip and venture elsewhere in Vegas. The buses are easier to get to than taxis. The Deuce, the double-decker bus, travels exclusively around The Strip, to South Strip Transit Terminal and all the way to Downtown Strip Transit Terminal. It stops at all major hotels and casinos along the way, so it does take time to get from one place to another. Just like the city, The Deuce operates 24 hours, 7 days per week. Purchase a Deuce Pass and use it on other RTC buses too. To reach the Vegas Premium Outlets, you will need the Strip & Downtown Express bus. It also takes you to the Las Vegas Outlet Center, and the South Strip Transfer Terminal on Fremont Street. This bus only operates from 9:00 am to 12:30 am and comes every 10 to 15 minutes. The Westcliff Airport Express route offers a faster ride to downtown as well as the Outlets, Strip at Tropicana, and McCarran International Airport. It comes every 20 minutes in the morning, and 30 minutes during the afternoon hours. In the evening, it operates hourly.
Fares for bus rides will range from $6 USD for 2 hours to $8 USD for a 24-hour pass and $20 for a 3-day pass. Multi-day passes are better, because they allow you to move within different lines without multiple ticket purchases.
Cars can be parked using valet services at almost every location, including shopping malls. However, this can become costly. Average valet prices are $1 – $2 USD tips, because the valet service is free for visiting the establishment.
Taxi cabs are popular, but they have a $3.30 USD drop fee to hire and then charge $2.40 USD per mile after that. If the trip involves a ride to and from the airport, they add a $1.80 USD fee, and waiting fees are $30 USD per hour if the cab is in traffic. During peak hours and heavy traffic, you could spend more on a single taxi ride than a day of rental car fees.
Trolleys are the slower option for Las Vegas Strip adventures. These take the roads behind the casinos, but stop at all major casinos and hotels along the way. There are three routes: Vegas Strip (Stratosphere to Mandalay Bay); South Loop (Mandalay Bay to Grand View); and Downtown Vegas Loop (downtown terminal to the outlet mall). Trolleys run every 30 minutes and the fees vary depending on hourly, day or weekly passes. A three-day pass is recommended for travelers, costing only $12 USD.
The Las Vegas Monorail runs along the Strip from 7:00 am to 2:00 am Monday to Thursday and 3:00 am on the weekends. Stations are at MGM Grand, Bally’s, the Flamingo, Harrah’s, Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas Hilton, and SLS. Pick up is at the back of the hotels and it arrives every 5 – 10 minutes. The Monorail is very fast, clean and safe. Single fares are $5 USD, while day passes cost $12 USD. You can also buy 2-day, 3-day and up to a maximum 7-day pass which costs $56 USD. There is an option to purchase shareable passes, and all tickets are available at the Monorail’s station.
Trams are free and located on the western side of the Vegas Strip. They connect between properties of similar ownership, so you will only travel between those related hotels and casinos. For example, one connects the Excalibur to Luxor and Mandalay Bay.
Free casino shuttles and resort shuttles are offered privately by the hotel you are staying at, but they have extensive wait times. The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino has a shuttle that moves hourly, stopping at resorts along the Strip. Inquire at your hotel or resort to see what free shuttles they may offer visitors.
No visa is required for domestic travelers within the U.S. For foreign nationals, please check the U.S. Department of State website.
Canadian citizens can enter the U.S. through the Visa Waiver Program, which lets them visit for 90 days or less without requiring a travel visa. A passport is required, and travellers must have an Electronic System for Travel Authorization approval.
Vegas is a historical U.S. city with plenty of things to do, and amazing trivia to soak up while you are here. Vegas Vic, the iconic neon cowboy over Fremont Street, is the largest mechanical neon sign of its kind, so be sure to get a picture of it. More than 41 million people visit Las Vegas each year, so you may run into a few tourists from Canada and other countries during your stay.
17 out of the 20 largest hotels in the country are in Las Vegas. Some highlights to see aside from the casinos and grand resorts of Las Vegas include:
Visitors under the age of 21 cannot loiter in the casino and there is a strict curfew on the Strip. Children under 18 cannot be out after 9:00 pm unless they are with a guardian or parent. Luckily, children under the age of 12 can often stay in the hotel free with parents.
Remember Casino Etiquette
Do not bring personal electronics into the casino floors. Hotel security may remove these items from your possession, especially if an item looks like a camera or video recorder of any type.
Drink Plenty of Water
The air is quite dry in Las Vegas, because it is the desert. So be sure to drink plenty of water and wear sufficient sunscreen too.
Typically, a gratuity of 15 to 20 percent is expected for tips. Dealers and slot attendants usually receive a small tip, hotel personnel typically receive $1 to $2 per bag carried, and concierges receive a $5 USD tip.
Conventions and Events
Regardless of when you visit, you are likely to stumble into a convention or two. Look out for dates and try to plan accordingly. If you want to attend an event, you will need to book early, but if you want cheaper hotel rates, you should try to avoid event and convention weeks.