The Las Vegas Experience on a Shoestring Budget
A common misconception is that you have to have a large bankroll to truly experience Las Vegas. Fortunately, there are many ways that you can have a great time in Vegas without spending a lot of cash. Not only can you stay in elegant hotels, but you can also gamble with a shoestring budget. There are a variety of hotels, casinos and activities you can enjoy without breaking the bank. Here are some suggestions on how to get that Las Vegas experience without the Las Vegas losses.
Slot Game Tournaments
Slots tournaments are a good way to enjoy Las Vegas on a shoestring budget. At several Vegas casinos, there are rooms that are reserved for slots tournaments with a one type of slot machine for every player. These slot machines are said to produce more jackpot combinations than other casino slot games. These machines start with a pre-set amount of free play credits or a pre-set amount of playing time. Rather than playing for money, you will play for points and your only risk is the entry fee. Many slots tournaments have a payout structure of $5,000, $15,000 and $25,000 for the top 3 players. Even if you do not make it into the top rankings, you can still walk away with $100. The odds are much better than other casino slots games because if there are 100 players, for example, you have a 1 in 100 chance to win one of the top prizes.
Here are some of the most affordable and popular slots tournaments:
- Monte Carlo Resort and Casino: Free to enter for player club members and the top prize is $500.00.
- Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino: There is a daily No Risk Slot Tournament with a $25 entry fee. Along with entry into the tournament, you will receive $10 of play credits for video poker or slot machines and a $10 restaurant gift card.
- Main Street Station: There are daily slot tournaments between 11 and 4 pm. Entry into the tournaments costs $15 for regular players and $5 for Players Gold card holders. The 1st place prize is half of the paid entry fees.
- Plaza Hotel and Casino: There is a free daily slot tournament from 10 to 5:30 pm and daily prizes of $500.
- Riviera: Slots tournaments from Wednesday to Sunday from 12 to 8 pm. Entry into the tournaments costs $10 with a guaranteed minimum payout of $250.
Affordable Blackjack Tables
Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games in the world. If you have the highest hand and it does not exceed 21, then you are the winner. Your hand value is determined by the sum of the card values. Cards that are numbered 2 through 10 are equal to their face value, Aces are worth 11 or 1 and face cards are valued at 10. The maximum and minimum bets vary depending on the casino and the table but there are a few casinos that offer Blackjack for $1 per hand. Here are some of the most affordable Blackjack tables in Vegas:
- Imperial Palace Hotel and Casino: $1.00 Blackjack tables
- Klondike Sunset, Joker’s Wild, The Longhorn and Eldorado Hotel: $2.00 Blackjack tables
- El Cortez, Silver Nugget, Golden Gate, Poker Palace and Sahara: $3.00 Blackjack tables
- Other casinos usually offer Blackjack games starting at $5.00
Affordable Craps Tables
Craps is a wildly entertaining dice game where you place bets on the outcome of the dice roll. Craps tables can hold 16 players at one time and a roll of 2, 3, or 12 is called craps. Each casino and table has different minimum bet limits but there are a few Vegas casinos that have $1.00 craps tables including Joker’s Wild and the El Dorado.
Planning a Las Vegas Vacation on a Small Budget
There is an enormous amount of activities for you and your family to enjoy while you are in Las Vegas. You can take a sightseeing tour to the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam or around the city of Las Vegas. There are also many night clubs, shows, restaurants, shopping, family recreation centers and of course, casinos. The first step in planning your Vegas vacation is to choose your accommodations. You will want to select a hotel that offers the activities that you want to enjoy. For example, if you have a family with children, the best hotels to stay at include the Excalibur or Circus Circus because they have recreation for children in the hotels. In addition, these hotels have family meal plans where your children will eat for free.
If you are interested in sightseeing, you should plan to do this over several days, particularly if you have children. You can also find many shops around the Las Vegas area. Every casino has a gift shot with Vegas memorabilia and some casinos have specialty stores including Caesar’s Palace and The Venetian. However, for the best value, you should go to the kiosks and shops on Fremont Street. If you do not have children with you, then a vacation package at one of the hotels on Fremont Street may be a good choice for you. These hotels offer inexpensive meals, gaming, shopping, cocktails bars and a few shows. These hotels and casinos are not as expensive as those on the Strip but they are within walking distance to all the big-time Las Vegas hotels and casinos. If you would like a more elegant hotel, the Golden Nugget is a good choice for you. Finally, when you book your flight to Las Vegas, you may get a better deal when you bundle your flight, hotel and car rental so be sure to shop around for the best deal.