Las Vegas is no longer the adult playground it once was. You can safely travel to Las Vegas, avoiding every aspect of “Sin City”, and have a great family vacation. Here are seven reasons why you SHOULD take your kids to Las Vegas.
1. Las Vegas is easy to get to. With flights from all major and a lot of minor airports across the US, Las Vegas is easy to reach by air. Flights are often very cheap if you can plan your stay to avoid weekends. If you’re driving to Las Vegas all the hotels offer free parking.
2. Las Vegas has some seriously cheap accommodation. Where else in the Western world can you nab a room in a four-star hotel for less than US$60 a night? If you’re flexible and can travel mid-week you will find rates at ALL the hotels extremely reasonable. You’ll pay around one third the price if you stay Sunday through Thursday nights instead of over the weekend. Kids will love the themed hotels like Excalibur, Circus Circus and Treasure Island.
3. Prices don’t skyrocket during holidays. In most destinations, especially the uber-family friendly ones, the cost of flights and accommodation soars during school holiday periods. Take advantage of the fact that Las Vegas isn’t your typical family vacation spot. Christmas is a cheap time to visit Las Vegas, as is Summer.
4. There is plenty for your kids to see and do in Las Vegas. Whether they want to ride roller-coasters, pet a stingray or get their own personalized M&Ms, your kids will have plenty of fun activities to do. Most attractions offer discounts for kids, and toddlers are almost always free. You can take your kids to shows like Blue Man Group and Cirque du Soliel – discounts for kids tickets aren’t offered.
4. You won’t gamble away your kids’ college fund. Legally your kids can’t be in a casino unless you are using it to access your hotel room, a restaurant or an attraction. This means if you stand still for more than a minute or so security will ask you to move along. Mum can walk a stroller up and down a casino thoroughfare while Dad puts a few dollars in a slot machine but you won’t be able to spend much time at any machines and you certainly won’t be allowed near any tables.
6. Las Vegas has lots of family-friendly dining options. You’ll find the usual American favorites from fast food to casual dining in food courts and hotels along The Strip. Almost every hotel has a buffet, each offering a wide range of cuisine. Even the fussiest eater will find something to please them. There are a few special restaurants in Las Vegas that kids will love. The Rainforest Cafe at MGM takes your dining experience on a jungle adventure complete with waterfalls, sound & light shows and animatronic wildlife. You can eat a three-course medieval feast at Excalibur’s Tournament of Kings. No utensils provided, you’ll be using your hands to eat dinner while watching knights on horseback put on a wonderful show. Screaming and banging on the table is encouraged!
7. You don’t have to spend a lot of money while you’re there. A lot of what’s on offer in Las Vegas can be experienced for free. Kids will love being allowed to stay up past bedtime to watch the volcano outside The Mirage explode, the fountains at The Bellagio dancing to music or the fantastic free pirate show at Treasure Island. There are lots of street performers offering up their talents on the sidewalk – musicians, dancers and moving statues to entertain and celebrity impersonators and their favorite cartoon characters to take a picture with.
Bethaney is one third of Flashpacker Family, a semi-nomadic family of three with a toddler who spend part of the year in Christchurch, New Zealand and the rest out exploring the world. Bethaney shares blog posts from the road, tips on smart, budget travel and insight into what it takes live a nomadic lifestyle.