Vegas on the cheap
July 18, 2005 2:36 PM   Subscribe

I just found out I'll be in Vegas for three days next week and I am looking for some fun stuff to do that won't break the bank.

My thesis advisor needed a last-minute stand-in to present a research paper, and I'm it! My boyfriend is flying down with me to enjoy the free hotel room (we're staying at Caesar's Palace). We are looking for inexpensive places to eat and gamble, and affordable shows to go to.

We'll be in Vegas from Sunday night until Wednesday afternoon. I've read the two threads on Vegas already, but wanted some specific information on the following:

Cheap eats:
We're willing to splurge on a meal or two but we're both broke students so if there are some okay places out there for under $15 or $20 US per person please let us know!

Low stakes gambling:
The boyfriend is a big blackjack fan, and I like to play craps. We're looking for places where the minimum bet is $1. We love to play Texas Holdem with our friends at home but are kind of assuming we won't be able to afford to play poker in a real casino... but maybe we're wrong...?

What are the best shows under $50 US? As a synchronized swimmer, I really really want to see "O" but we can't afford it, and I don't think it plays on Mondays and Tuesdays anyhow.
posted by sanitycheck to Travel & Transportation around Las Vegas, NV (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
It's very retro and far from "the place to be" on the strip, but you can play $1-$3 blackjack hands at The Sahara during the day. I seem to recall that the limits went up at night, but they still had more low-minimum tables even then, and more low-minimum tables than the higher-on-the-food-chain casinos.
posted by 27 at 2:51 PM on July 18, 2005

Fremont St. (downtown Vegas, "old" Vegas, etc.) is also good for cheapness. Plus, free light show on the ceiling they installed over the street.

Just walking through the casinos or watching their free shows outside (like the Bellagio water show, whatever pirate nonsense they have at TI, and the eruption at the Mirage) can be entertaining as well.
posted by LionIndex at 2:59 PM on July 18, 2005

Casino Royale on the strip has a lot of low budget tables- I've played $0.50 roulette there before.

There are a lot of brokers that sell discounted tickets to shows- look for their storefronts on the strip. They sell out fairly quickly, at least on weekends- you may have more options on a Monday or Tuesday night, but try to go to them early.
posted by InfidelZombie at 3:18 PM on July 18, 2005

The importantance of finance is utterly dwarfed next to the importance of seeing at least one Cirque du Solei performance - they're stunning (and for some people, life-changing).

Given the unimaginable concept that there is usually more than one troupe in Vegas at any one time these days - that you actually have a selection to choose from, see what friends who have seen shows thought, go online and find discussion/comparisons, so you can choose the show you're most likely to enjoy. (As the appeal of different shows can vary significantly. Some just pretty cool, others are mindblowing).

That's assuming money is tight. If there is enough, go see all the shows and then decide which was best :-)
posted by -harlequin- at 3:23 PM on July 18, 2005

This has been mentioned in the other threads, but I can't recommend the Peppermill enough. It's the most incredible 70s diner extravaganza you've ever seen - a mass of chrome, pink and blue neon and plastic cherry trees. As far as I can tell, the only decent place to eat on the Strip, and one of the only reasons go to actually go to Vegas.
posted by Gortuk at 3:53 PM on July 18, 2005 [1 favorite]

Go to the big Coke bottle on the strip before noon and get in line to get half off show tickets. It's same day only but you may get lucky...
posted by yodelingisfun at 3:58 PM on July 18, 2005

This is not that helpful, but "access hollywood" had a show on cheap vegas fun recently, like in the last month. maybe the transcript has hit google, but there were some excellent restaurants that weren't too spendy mentioned.
posted by mecran01 at 4:23 PM on July 18, 2005

I'm with Gortuk--the Peppermill Fireside Lounge is just fab. Good diner grub in the cafe that won't break the bank but make sure to visit the lounge and have a drink in the sunken couch pit that surrounds the flaming pool of water.

If you have any interest in a good dive bar frequented by locals then head to the Double Down.
posted by donovan at 8:04 PM on July 18, 2005 [1 favorite]

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