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Las VegasOctober 1, 2007 By: Travel Agent Central Contributor Travel Agent
Las Vegas Resources
Mark Travel Corporation (www.vaxvacationaccess.com) is the parent company for Fun Jet Vacations, United, Spirit, Southwest and MGM-Mirage.
GOGO Worldwide Vacations (800-254-3477, 201-934-3500, www.gogowwv.com) offers training, as well as 17 business development managers (BDMs).
Continental Airlines Vacations (www.covacations.com/) sells inclusive land, air and transfer packages.
Las Vegas Tourist Bureau (www.lasvegastouristbureau.com) has inclusive tour and hotel packages, and will even book wedding chapels for clients.
Visit Las Vegas (www.visitlasvegas.com) is the official tourism site of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
The Home-Based Travel Agent Conference & Expo (www.homebasedtravelagentexpo.com), December 4-6, at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino is a great opportunity to network and learn. The first 2,500 agents to register will get complimentary tickets to a show!
Here, with thanks from the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority (www.visitlasvegas.com), are some tips on:
Getting Around Vegas
Las Vegas is a compact city with many attractions available in the central area around the Strip and downtown. Transportation options are numerous and varied, from renting a vintage Cadillac Eldorado or new Corvette, to hopping on a city bus, taking a cab or riding the Las Vegas Monorail, one of the most modern transportation systems in the world.
If you're flying into Vegas, the most economical way to get to your hotel is probably on an airport shuttle. The shuttles gather just outside the terminal in the same area as the taxis.
Shuttle service to the Strip or downtown costs less than $10, and buses run 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Check with your hotel to arrange the return trip to McCarran.
The average price for renting an economy car in Vegas is around $25 to $30 per day, but the sky's the limit if you want to cruise the Strip in something a little more extravagant. Rates will rise on holiday weekends or when there's a large convention in town. (Use Advanced Search to find convention schedules.)
As for driving, the city is laid out in a grid format, and easy to navigate. Be sure to keep a map handy, though.
Search for Car Rental Companies
Buses and Charters
There are several private companies that operate buses and charters that travel to attractions in and around Las Vegas.
Search for Buses and Charters
There's certainly something to be said for seeing Las Vegas in style, and you can do so for as low as $35 an hour. Options and pricing vary widely depending on the vehicle and services you desire.
The good news is that free parking is abundant. Virtually every major hotel offers free valet parking (it's customary to tip valets $2 when they retrieve your car; this is still a great deal compared to virtually every other major U.S. city.)
Parking is not allowed on the Strip itself, and several blocks of Fremont Street form a pedestrian mall, the Fremont Street Experience, and are closed to vehicular traffic. Your best bet to park on the Strip or downtown is in one of the hotel lots or parking garages. Be sure to take note on where you leave your vehicle, or even better, take advantage of valet parking whenever you can.
Public bus transportation in Las Vegas is operated by Citizens Area Transit (CAT). There are numerous bus routes throughout the area; a one-way fare on the Strip costs $2, and slightly less in the rest of the city. Buses on the Strip run 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
For the latest information and scheduling, call CAT-RIDE at (702) 228-7433, or visit the CAT Web site.
There is also a trolley that runs the length of the Strip. Reasonable fares and day passes are available, and the trolley runs from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m.
Search for Local Transportation
You shouldn't have any trouble finding a cab in town. Fares start with $3.20 on the meter, and $2.20 is then added for every additional mile.
Search for Taxi Companies
The Las Vegas Monorail
The Las Vegas Monorail travels along the east side of The Strip behind the resorts. Runs 7 days a week from 7 a.m. - 2 a.m. Monday through Thursday and until 3 a.m. Friday through Sunday from the Sahara Hotel to the MGM Grand with the following stops in between - Las Vegas Hilton, Las Vegas Convention Center, Harrah's/Imperial Palace, the Flamingo/Caesar's Palace and Bally's/Paris. See website for individual, multi-day and group ticket prices.
Vegas on Foot
With all of these transportation options, you will still cover a lot of the city on foot. That said, the length of the Strip can be deceptive... it takes more time than you would think to walk from one end to the other. But parts of the Strip must be experienced on foot: where else in the world can you marvel at dancing fountains (the Bellagio), see an erupting volcano (the Mirage), or watch pirates and sirens entertain on ships nightly? (Treasure Island, or T.I.) Not to mention downtown's Fremont Street Experience, which is a haven for pedestrians.
Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and carry a bottle of water, especially during summer months.