Strip hotels will sell you liquor, toothpaste, laundry service etc. for inflated prices. Likewise, the price of your wife's manicure (or yours) will be $35 from the hotel instead of $15 off-strip. The Fashion Show Mall (3200 S. LV Blvd just N of Treasure Island) is very ritzy compared to, say, the Boulevard Mall 3/4 mi to the east.
Unique Suggestions: Win lots of money from the casino first.
Fun Alternatives: A few blocks east of the Strip there are regular shopping areas where you can visit drugstores / clothing stores / get your hair or nails done and save half (compared to the same products or services at your hotel). Example: Boulevard Mall (3258 S. Maryland Pkwy between Desert Inn & Flamingo) is a shopping mall surrounded by lesser (read: normal) shops. Good, fun laundromats in this area will really save you a bundle.
I noticed that most photo-processing on offer was a rip-off in Las Vegas, especially in the Casinos. There's a supermarket right on the strip (I think it's called Walgreens), which does it much cheaper!
A tourist trap is having people coming up to you and ask if you want your picture taken. We had a picture taken of us at the Excalibur show and for TWO small pictures, it cost us about $20.00! Have somebody you met take the picture instead.
While I'm sure the Stratosphere is an excellent casino, the thrill rides at the top are not quite so stellar. While there is an assumed thrill to riding one of the world's highest roller-coasters, in fact the better coasters can be found closer to the ground at the other casinos. Its especially annoying that you are charged to go up the tower and then charged again to ride either the drop or the coaster.
Althought buses seem to be the cheapest and easiest way to get around, check your
options. OFTEN buses are packed and fare is 2.00. If you don't mind splitting a cab
with your group and are not going far, you will get there with less aggravation and also
quicker without making stops on every corner
Hotel Stores - If you forget your sunblock please I beg of you use the Walgreens in the middle of the strip. A small bottle of sunblock inside the Hotels costs ten bucks. THe Walgreens is located center strip at 3765 Las Vegas Blvd. S, tel. 702/739-9645
Avoid the stratosphere roller coaster, it's a real joke. It's nice novelty to have a roller coaster at the top of the tower, but it's wimpy and expensive. The observation deck is cheaper and just as exciting.
The Las Vegas shows are outrageously expensive. Expect to pay $100+ to see Siegfried and Roy show or performers of a similar ilk (i.e. cheesy, slick, and ultimately boring) consider the large number of 2nd-tier shows that run every week. Lots of well known magicians, comedians and musicians are often to be found playing at smaller venues and much more reasonable prices. Failing that, consider amusing yourself with the free entertainment that most of the hotel/casinos put on near their gaming floors.
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