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Las Vegas Travel Tips - What to Know Before You Go

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An oasis of glamour and excess in the Mojave Desert, Las Vegas welcomes millions of travelers each year. Home to casinos, world-class live entertainment, and outdoor adventures, the city and its surrounding areas have plenty to offer, whether you're visiting for a weekend with friends or celebrating a honeymoon.

Best time to travel

 

It probably goes without saying that Vegas gets hot in the summer. Still, you can find plenty of pools and air-conditioned casinos to cool off in, even when temperatures exceed 100 degrees. If you prefer to avoid the heat altogether, consider visiting in the fall or winter, when daytime temps are more pleasant and the evenings can get a little chilly. As for crowds, numbers are lower beginning in November and running throughout the winter into January. If you're planning your trip around a holiday, like New Year's Eve or spring break, be prepared for large, cheerful crowds.

Not to miss

 

The Strip is the heart of Las Vegas, and no trip would be complete without a few "must-do" experiences here. Stop by the Venetian on the North Strip for a gondola ride, then head down to the Bellagio to see its famous fountain show set to your favorite classic and contemporary songs. On the South Strip, stop by the iconic "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign for a photo. For sensational entertainment, Cirque du Soleil’s shows, including the aquatic-themed O and The Beatles - LOVE, are just about the hottest tickets in town.

 

Getting around

 

Located a few minutes from The Strip, McCarran International Airport (LAS) welcomes domestic and international flights. Taxis are available at the airport, and there's also bus service from the Westcliff Airport Express (WAX), which picks up at the airport and stops at a few locations along The Strip. You can travel just about anywhere in the city by car, but be ready to deal with traffic, especially on The Strip and on the weekends. If you're planning to visit surrounding areas like Lake Las Vegas, a car is essential.

 

Cuisine

 

Vegas's casinos might be famous, but its restaurants are stars in their own right. The resorts along The Strip are home to 5-star eateries helmed by celebrity chefs, including Nobu at Caesars Palace and Jean Georges Steakhouse at Aria. Most resorts offer both upscale and casual dining options, as well as lavish buffets, so you're sure to find something, even if you're traveling with kids. You'll even find Vegas versions of two NYC favorites: the Carnegie Deli and Le Cirque. For dining off The Strip, downtown has an assortment of restaurants that, while they lack famous names, are still satisfying.

 

Customs and etiquette

 

When it comes to casino etiquette, keep in mind that security generally frowns upon patrons bringing in electronic devices. Photos and videos of game tables and slots are prohibited. While many resorts allow smoking on the casino floor, it is typically not allowed in restaurants or other public areas. If you're traveling with kids, The Strip has a curfew for children under 18, and they're not allowed in casinos if they're under 21. ATMs are abundant, and tipping 15 to 20 percent of the total bill at restaurants is standard.

 

Fast facts

 

  • Population: 603000
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  • Spoken languages: English
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  • Electrical: 110 to 120 volts, plug types A and B
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  • Phone calling code: +1 702 or 725
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  • Emergency number: 911