Things To Do For Free or Cheap In Las Vegas
Vegas is a destination with endless possibilities... to experience them you don't need to spend all your dollars, as there's plenty of cheap, discounted or free things to do in Las Vegas
A week in Las Vegas can get pretty expensive if you're planning to experience Vegas to the max, and splash the cash on nightclubs, fine dining, taxis and gambling. But if you're visiting Vegas on a budget and you simply want to do touristy things and see the bright neon lights for yourself, then there are ways to save a few dollars, so that the money saved can be used towards doing more fun stuff on the strip or on excursions. I have been to Vegas twice and before each trip, I have done my research to see what events are happening beforehand, so I can plan my days and make sure I can fit in everything I want to do. On both trips, I have always been able to stick to my budget and have a little left over to exchange back at the end.
Instead of taking taxis or ubers, use the Duce bus. You can jump on a Duce bus outside most resorts and buy different day passes from the machines to suit your needs. I brought a 24 hour day pass for $8 and used it to visit the Fremont Street Experience in Downtown Vegas and the 'Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas' sign.
Most resorts, especially ones that are not located on the strip have a free round trip shuttle service that runs all day. So find out if your hotel provides one before you start spending your cash on taxis. On our second trip to Vegas, we stayed at the Rio and they provided a free shuttle service that ran every half an hour, so we saved loads during our 10 days in Vegas.
There is also the monorail that covers the majority of the strip, from the MGM Grand to the SLS Station, which is at the end of the strip opposite The Stratosphere hotel, see route.
There are three trams that connect a few resorts together that are free to hop onto the west side of the strip, and they run every 5 minutes or so. They are:
Mandalday Bay - Luxor - Excalibur
Monte Carlo - Aria - Bellagio (with access to Vdara, Aria, Crystals and Mandarian Oriental)
Mirage - Treasure Island
There are a couple of Walgreen's stores located on the strip, as well as other large convenient supermarkets. Drinks and snacks can be well overpriced at the convenience stores located inside the resorts, so whenever possible stock up on essentials at the larger supermarket stores. My favourite is Walgreen's it's cheap and they have a great variety of food available, such as freshly prepared sandwiches, salads and fruit boxes etc. Most hotel rooms in Vegas have fridges, so stocking up on drinks and food is a great way to save money during your trip so you can spend your money on far more exciting things during your time in sin city.
Fountains of Bellagio
Watching the magical Bellagio Fountain display is a must, the show starts every 15-30mins depending on the time of day.
Bellagio Botanical Gardens
It's free to enter the beautiful Botanical Garden show, they change the display for summer, harvest and the holidays.
Fall of Atlantis at Caesars Forumn Shops
The show features a 20-foot winged dragon, fire and talking statues. You can watch the live performance at the Forum Shops every hour on the hour. At the Caesars resort, there is also a huge aquarium with 300 saltwater fish.
Fremont Street Experience
If you visit Downtown Vegas on the evening you will experience a bustling atmosphere, with live music being played on stage and a fantastic LED light display on the canopy, see my post here for more photos.
Flamingo Wildlife Habitat
The Flamingo Hotel & Casino has its own Flamingo Wildlife Habitat, so if you're into nature then its worth the visit. You can see my photos here in last year's blog post when I visited the habitat.
The Grand Canal Shoppes at the Venetian
My video above shows a little clip of the live performance from people in costume, it's great to watch and it just adds to the fantastic atmosphere, with gondolas going down the canal, the sky painted ceiling and alfresco dining in this Venice-themed resort.
Volcano at the Mirage
Every hour after dusk you can watch a fantastic volcano display outside the Mirage resort, my video above shows a clip of it, just a little warning be prepared to get hot if your standing close by.
Welcome to Las Vegas sign
You can find the Welcome to Las Vegas sign if you walk, drive or take the Duce bus and go past the Mandalay Bay resort, you won't miss it as there's a mini car park and crowds of people taking selfies there.
There's so much to do in Las Vegas, if you use the Viator mobile app, you can book exciting excursions and take advantage of their regular offers and discounts on trips. I used the app to book a Tandem skydive (see post here) and to hike the Red Rock Canyon (see posts here and here ).
You can also take advantage of being nearby two other awesome states, California and Arizona. Last year I went on a Vegas to Hollywood day trip and it was fantastic, you can read about it here. I also spent the day in Arizona hiking the Grand Canyon, you can read about it here. You could also go along Route 66 and stop at Seligman, Arizona (read my post here) and on your way out of Vegas stop at the Hoover Dam (see post here ). If you go on a Grand Canyon tour, your tour guide is likely to stop at these places, but check first or you can do them separately.
These are day trips I totally recommend you do if you're in Vegas, they were all fantastic experiences that I was able to tick off my bucket list.
Next summer when I go to Vegas, I am planning on going on a Utah hiking excursion, so that's also something you can do using the app. Plus there is an Area 51 tour, which would be pretty awesome to do too.