It’s Groundhog Day, and apparently we are due for 6 more weeks of winter. That doesn’t mean future Vegas trips can’t be in the works! Going to Las Vegas with all girls is a completely different experience than with the fam or the bf. Here’s my list of 20 DOs & DON’Ts for an all girls getaway, which frankly, are the funnest trips.
#1.) DO: Get a fabulous room in a fabulous location. The strip has hotels for all budget levels so don’t book a hotel to save up a few bucks when you’re inevitably going to pay more for taxi fares! Figure out the clubs you want to hit or hotels you will likely tour and grab a hotel near there. Many of the hotels are renovating their rooms, so do your research and get the best room for your ideal price. The Flamingo’s Go Room is my current recommendation for the cheapest, newly renovated, room on the strip. The casino floor might be a bit older, but the renovated rooms are nice and the new pool is a great time. My favorite place for a larger group of girls is definitely Elara or Vdara in their 1 or 2 bedroom suites/penthouses. Elara takes the AAA discount and Vdara, you can sign up for free for an MLife account for a discount. The suites include a full kitchen, jacuzzi, and the Elara even includes a TV projector that takes up the entire wall. All these recommended hotels are mid-strip, which make for easy access. The Venetian is also a go-to for larger groups since they are all suites, but their prices tend to be a bit higher for the amount of space and amenities. Some other good budget on-the-strip hotels include the following: Excalibur, Tropicana, and Monte Carlo.
DON’T: Break your budget or forget about the “resort fees”. Yes, you want to splurge on your vacation and a relaxing hotel, but don’t break your budget. Otherwise, you’ll secretly be passive aggressive about the price the entire trip and nitpick at everything imperfect with your room or hotel. Pick something in your range and only pay for what’s important to you. If a full kitchen is worth it to you because you know you’ll be stocking it up, great. If you’re not going to actually take advantage of the extra space and ever be in the room, maybe it isn’t worth the extra bills. Also, don’t forget about those pesky resort fees when figuring out the room price total. Almost all Vegas hotels are now charging a per day “resort fee” for things you won’t use, with the exception of maybe wifi. Whether or not you use their resort fee services, you’ll be slapped on with a daily fee between $10-$30/day. Your room might not seem as affordable when you take these into account.
#2.) DO: Go with girlfriends with similar views on Vegas Vacays. There are girls you call when you had an awful day at work, and there are girls you go to Vegas with. If you’re lucky, these girls are one in the same. Make sure your agenda for fun in Vegas coincides with your group of girls. While one’s ideal vacay may be lounging pools, spas, and shopping, the others’ might be boys, drinks, and more drinks. Of course there’s always compromise in their somewhere and either way, you’re going with girls you love, but going with girls on the same wave-length will always be a benefit for upping your level of fun.
DON’T: Be that girl. If you love your girlfriends but just realized you did not follow DO #2, try to get on their wave length of fun. If you have found that girl in your group, and it’s not you, cut them some slack and compromise on what you all want to do. You’ll probably be that girl eventually. Drinks help.
#3.) DO: Get on the guest list to one the hottest clubs in Vegas. If your group of girls is gorgeous, you’ll have no problem, you might even get a complimentary table offered to you. If your group of girls at least has lady parts, you’ll still be totally fine. Even at the busiest times of the year, it won’t be difficult to find a promoter that want you to get into their club and use their name. There are, however, plenty of clubs not worth stopping into unless there are some free drinks and it is extra convenient on your way. Take some time and tour your casino and the strip or search twitter and facebook. The promoters are countless. The issue is, making sure you have a good one that has connections. Some can promise the WORLD, and then flake out because they just wanted a set number of girls to meet their quota. The second part of this DO is to get into one of the hottest clubs in Vegas. Luxor’s LAX and Bellagio’s The Bank are now old news. Pure @ Caesar’s isn’t even as exciting or new as it once was either, but they will be renovating soon. New clubs are opening up every year. The place to be is always changing, but for 2015, you’re pretty safe with Marquee @The Cosmopolitan, XS @ Encore, Tao @ Venetian (Classic), Light @Mandalay Bay, Hakkasan @ MGM, or rooftop Drai’s Nightclub @ The Cromwell. It’s 3am and the club is slowly dying down, but you’re still wide awake? Head to the underground (literally) Drai’s After Hours @The Cromwell and stay until the sun comes up. Send me a message if you need some additional contacts, but Kevin can definitely help you out! He’s always the first I tell when I’m headed into town for the weekend.
DON’T: Pay a cover charge, ever. People will pay for tickets because a performer/DJ is in town or because this is the newest club so “everyone pays”. No, not everyone pays. A group of girls should not pay a cover charge ever. Some door men will tell you, you’re on the “guest list”, but girls still pay a reduced fee. I understand that Zedd is DJing tonight, and your sorority sister who only knows that one Ariana Grande song would LOVE to instagram that she saw him, but do NOT pay. Early arrival is probably needed, but you can still get in free depending on whose guest list your on. It also goes back to your promoter. Some guys who work the malls/casinos are still paying their dues trying to get “credit” for girls. They might make promises they can’t keep. Be on a list of someone higher up the food chain, and you will be fine. Keep in touch, and don’t piss off your promoter.
#4.) DO: See the strip. The Vegas Strip is an experience in itself. Each hotel has its own theme to explore. There are lions at MGM, a water show and conservatory at Bellagio, a bursting volcano at Mirage, Sirens at TI (yeah, they got rid of the pirates…I’m still bitter about that and now it’s called TI because it is apparently a way cooler than name than Treasure Island…) and the list goes on and on. Aside from the hotels, walking the strip to witness the many “interesting” people that exist in this world is also a lot of fun.
DON’T:Forget to bring more than heels.I am still flabbergasted when girls bring a suitcase full of shoes for a weekend trip and forget to bring some flats to walk in! The strip is significantly longer than it looks. Stopping for photo-ops, exploring hotels, and crossing the streets crowded with taxis makes it even longer. Do yourself a favor and bring something other than heels to explore the strip.
#5.) DO: Be proud to be a tourist. I’ve been to Vegas more than 50 times in my lifetime, and I still am proud to be a tourist. Vegas is always changing, and no one is a true expert. Grab an overpriced, oversized, plastic guitar and drink the frozen goodness. Bust out the camera and hit a pose, everywhere. Unless you’re driving a taxi or handing out cards with naked girls on them, you’re a tourist. It’s okay. Be proud.
DON’T: Rely on old information.As mentioned earlier, Vegas is always changing. It’s always a bummer telling people that the Pirate Show at Treasure Island or the roller coaster on the Stratosphere no longer exist. Aladdin is now the Planet Hollywood and the iconic Stardust from Martin Scorsese’s Casino is now an empty lot. Changes every year are numerous. Some of my favorite clubs at the Palms that I once wrote about in this blog post previously no longer exist. Do your research on what you want to definitely see and check up on what still is around and the new attractions you might have never heard of. (This post recently got updated in 2015 for all you readers out there)
#6.) DO: See a show. There are plenty of shows in Vegas worth investing some money into. An all girls trip might mean a girl-targeted show like Chippendales or Thunder From Down Under. If those shows freak you out as they do me (Because if you’re not Channing Tatum, do you even matter?), you might be better off with Cirque du Soleil’s KA at MGM and O at Bellagio or Blue Man Group at Monte Carlo, which are among my top recommendations. There are always new shows so check out the reviews and invest in something you won’t regret. If you’re on a more limited budget, check out Tix4Tonight the morning you want to head out and pick up some cheap, fun shows. You likely won’t be able to see a major show, but the comedy or hypnosis shows are good fun as well as long as they’re fairly discounted. Some good ones that often have a discount are Absinthe at Caesar’s Palace, Zumanity at New York New York and Jabbawockeez at Luxor. Oh, and there’s always Britney, but don’t expect to find a discount. Lastly, if shows aren’t quite your thing, but you want to have a different experience…check out Stripper 101 at Planet Hollywood Miracle Mile Shops. It’s a fun workout and experience to have with your girlfriends, and it’s also surprisingly fairly PG and hilarious! It even includes a free cocktail. There are always promotions on Viator.com and other sites to make it budget friendly and it’s an incredibly Vegas-y fun thing to do.
DON’T: See Criss Angel’s Believe. It may be the only Cirque du Soleil show on the strip that is entirely disappointing to the masses. I love the choreographer, Wade Robson (Although I still think he is the reason Britney and JT aren’t together…), and Criss Angel’s show is actually really entertaining, so what happened? I don’t know.
#7.) DO: Shop. Shopping in Las Vegas is plentiful whether you’re in the mood for some high fashion or Forever 21. You can shop the Grand Canal Shops at Venetian and admire the gondolas rowing beside you or hit the Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace and witness the “Fall of Atlantis” show every hour, on the hour. The Crystals in CityCenter, Bellagio Via, and Wynn Esplande will provide you will some ritzy shopping, while Planet Hollywood’s Miracle Mile Shops can give you a taste of stores for normal people. There are also the Las Vegas Outlets for the outlet-addicts.
DON’T: Go too crazy at the outlets. Vegas shopping should not be a Black Friday experience. There should be no crying, shoving, or extreme exhaustion afterwards. Shop for fun or necessity, but don’t over shop unless you want to go to bed early. Outlets in Vegas are also great, but there are also plenty of outlets elsewhere, and sometimes the savings and quality are not all you imagined.
#8.) DO: Dress up, feel sexy. You’re in Vegas. Bust out that dress that you’ve been waiting for an occasion to wear because there will be plenty of photo-ops. You can get away with “extra” in Vegas than you wouldn’t be able to at your local bar. Those fake eyelashes and glitter dress fit in just fine.
DON’T: Dress slutty. It’s a thin line. If you’re “falling out”, you’ve probably gone too far. I’ve also seen plenty of girls who need constant adjustments to their dress, skirt, undergarments, pasties, etc and it does not look cute.
#9.) DO: Dress down and hit the pool. The pool scene in Vegas is evolving almost as much as the night life. Most of the hottest pools in Vegas are seasonal and will be closed in winter. The Bellagio, Caesar’s Palace, Excalibur, and the MGM Signature are among the few hotels that offer year-round pools. If you’re in town during peak pool season, drop the modesty and splash on in. There are pools for lounging such as MGM’s lazy river and even more for partying such as Wet Republic at MGM, Daylight at Mandalay Bar, or Encore’s Beach Club at well, Encore. Warning: If you need a place to lay back and tan, don’t go to a pool party, they’re ridiculously crowded.
DON’T: Forget the sunscreen or come pre-orange. The worst thing to do is to get sunburned the night before you hit the town. Bring plenty of sunscreen unless you want to pay high prices at the hotel convenience store. Don’t come with awful tans either, especially an hour before you arrive. Seeing streaks of tan running down your leg or remnants in the pool is not cute. There are enough Snookie look-alikes running around Vegas. Please don’t be one of them.
#10.) DO: Gamble. If you weren’t raised on poker like I was, and you’ve always wanted to learn how to gamble, Vegas is an absolute great place to start. Dealers are incredibly helpful with helping newbies learn a game. If they help you learn to play the game and or you’re doing well, don’t forget to leave the dealers a tip. If you want to simply check it off your bucket list, sit down at a slot machine and get a few free drinks ($1 tip) while you’re at it. They even do blended cocktails! If you’d prefer to gamble with some random guy’s money, find a table with a high minimum and make some new friends. That’s always an option.
DON’T: Use the casino ATMs. If you’re gambling, there’s a small chance you’ll get sucked in and end up losing more than the $5 you promised yourself you’d bet. When cash runs low, stop and head back to the room. Don’t use the casino ATMs unless you don’t mind the many fees they’ll tack on to your withdrawal. There are plenty of BoAs and WellsFeezies within a short driving distance if you have access to a car. If you won’t have your own car, make sure to bring enough cash along before you even arrive in Vegas. Having friends that bring extra cash and you can transfer via Venmo to is an easy option also.
#11.) DO: Splurge on a meal. I personally am fairly content with bringing my cup of noodles to Vegas and my mini tea kettle to heat up water. They make for great hangover food, and the food court is always a popular budget-go-to. Even if you’re on a budget-conscience trip, it’s very possible to splurge on one meal at a semi-formal, casual-esque restaurant. You’re on vacation! Buffets are especially popular everywhere! Check the hotel you are staying at if they offer a buffet discount for guests.
DON’T: Go to Rainforest Cafe. Don’t get me wrong. I like Rainforest Cafe with it’s thunder and elephant noises. I like The Cheesecake factory too, but they aren’t unique to Vegas or unique at all enough for a vacation. There’s a Rainforest Cafe in 13 states and 7 countries, why do you need to eat at the overpriced one at the MGM Grand? The same thing goes for The Cheesecake Factory that is in 34 states and counting. Get dressed up and go out to eat at least once, but don’t go somewhere you can go anywhere else.
#12.) DO: Splurge on a ride. Sometimes the wait to hit the club – especially when leaving from a club – is monstrously long that impatience takes over and you’ll want to hop in a limo. If your budget allows, it makes for a fun time and it’s even better if you get your driver to take the longer route to help you see the city for your predetermined price. Splurging on a ride may or may not include a limo. Splurging to some may simply mean taking a taxi when you don’t necessarily have to. By the end of the night, when you told yourself you would save money and walk from Cosmopolitan back to Mirage because it can’t be that far….(it is) splurge on a taxi ride. Also, while you’re in a crowded line, don’t be hesitate to shout out “heading to insert hotel name here” anyone want to split a cab or combo for a limo?”. Cabs are not as expensive as they seem. If your group is greater than 5, you might have to split up, but even 2 cabs will likely still cost less than a limo, despite what the scary limo driver tries to convince you of. Estimate about $8-15 including tip for each ride depending on distance on strip. From the airport, a taxi to most strip hotels will be around $20.
#DON’T: Forget to utilize free trams To save on rides, take advantage of the few free trams such as the one between Mirage/TI, between Mandalay Bay/Luxor/Excalibur, and between Bellagio / Monte Carlo / City Center. Do NOT take the monorail unless you are going by yourself or you purchased a 24 hour pass and intend to use it often. Often times, a cab is cheaper if there are at least 2 in your group.
#13.) DO: Bring band-aids and gum. Even when you wear foot-friendly heels, band-aids can still make your feet happier. You’ll see many girls in the bathroom massaging their feet and you can offer a band-aid as feminism support. The gum is necessary because clubs are loud. Drunk people are louder. You will inevitably be really close to someone whilst speaking directly in their face at a ridiculously loud volume and still be inaudible. Whether or not they can hear you or read your lips, they can smell you.
DON’T: Wear Sunglasses in the club. Unless you’re wearing Kanye-esque, glow in the dark shades to Perfecto @ Rain Nightclub in the Palms (and even then…update:, Rain has closed, and it might have been because of the glow in the dark sunglasses), leave them in the room. You’re going to look like an idiot.
#14.) DO: Have your ID out. Don’t piss off the door man by taking 5 minutes to rummage through your clutch for an ID. Have it out. The doorman has the power to get you in faster or recommend you get sat at a table. Although tables are usually purchased, until someone does, they can put your group of ladies there to make the club look pretty. He also has the power to be a jerk and say you look too drunk. Pissing off the doorman is never a good thing.
DON’T: Lose your ID or passport. It doesn’t matter how old or young you look in Vegas. If you lose your ID or passport, you might as well stay in your room or stick to #7. No, your Costco ID will not work. They will not call Costco to verify it for you. Yes, this has been attempted.
#15.) DO: Get free drinks / bottle service. Being a group of girls usually guarantees at least a few free drinks and sometimes even a table with unlimited bottle service paid by some randoms you’ll never see again. Many of the classic clubs liek TAO, Haze, 1Oak, etc will offer open bar for the first hour or drink tickets. Take advantage and make sure to get there on time to fill up. It also doesn’t hurt to promote a special occasion if you’re celebrating one. If you want bottle service, it’s sometimes luck, but feel free to ask your promoter if he can help you out with anything. Sometimes all it takes it dancing, and a door man, promoter, host, or booth security guy will swipe you to a table.
DON’T: Pregame so hard you don’t make it there. If you’re coming on an extra busy weekend or your group of girls doesn’t feel comfortable hanging out with strangers for alcohol, pregame hard just make sure you don’t over do it. It has happened. It is sad. Your friends will be right to leave you. #SorryNotSorry
#16.) DO: Wear heels that you can dance in. Those adorable heels that you just recently bought and perfectly match your outfit will make for that great one, single photo-op where your shoes are actually in the picture. Otherwise, you’ll be wanting to cut your feet off for the rest of the night if you don’t wear shoes you can actually walk and dance in for hours. It’s going to be a long night so don’t punish your feet for it. There are some great insoles for heels to invest in, and if those don’t work, you definitely don’t want to wear them. Not. Worth. It.
DON’T: Lose your shoes. There’s a likely chance you won’t follow the previous listed tip so when you ultimately wear shoes that make you hate yourself, don’t lose your shoes. There will be many instances where you can take off your shoes and relax your feet (see #15). When you get a table, you can feel safe leaving your shoes in the seat (some of them are compartments), but don’t lose them or dance barefoot on the floor. Dancing on leather seats is still a bit iffy, but at least you’ll be slightly safer. Dancing on the dance floor without shoes is a calling for having another B step on you with her painful heels. Even worse, table services can get messy and drink glasses do break. I’ve seen a girl with bloody feet after a bottle of glass shattered on her. It’s definitely a prime reason to kill the night. Some clubs like XS allow girls to sit on the cushioned seats pool side and soak/dance in the 3 inch deep pool. Just don’t fall in, or again, lose your shoes. The walk of shame will start a heck of a lot earlier if you do.
#17.) DO: See “Celebrities”. Las Vegas is crawling with B-list celebrities hosting at various nightclubs around town. Check out Club Zone or Spy on Vegas for dates of your arrival and see which celebrities are hosting or performing where. Whether or not there is a celebrity host or performer that night should not affect Do/Don’t #3. If you’re torn between a few nightclubs, but one of your favorite pop stars or Kardashian will be at one, it’ll help narrow down your decision.
DON’T: Stalk them all night long. Sure it would be nice to have a celebrity sighting, but snap a picture and move on with your night. Snapping away hundreds of pictures that will look exactly the same wastes your dancing-the night-away-time.
#18.) DO: Get off the strip.This might be fairly hard to do if you didn’t drive into Vegas or if you’re crunched for time, but if you get the chance, get off the strip! Ethel M’s chocolate factory has some free samples and a cactus garden. During the winter time, the cactus garden is turned into a wonderland of lights. I highly recommend it if you’re there during winter and can go after the sun sets. Fremont Street – Old Town Las Vegas – has been making a comeback in recent years with additional renovations and a zip-lining experience down the colorful street for $20. A cab to Old Town Vegas shouldn’t set you back more than $15, and it is one of the only places in Vegas you can find one of the old fashioned slot machines where you pull the handle! The nightly shows are also a fun experience if you have the time. There are also random things off the strip like the famous Pawn Stars store and the Hard Rock.
DON’T: Get married. Yes, get off the strip and maybe swing by the Little White Chapel where Britney Spears got married. Don’t do the same. I’m really happy she got that come back and everything, but man, that took awhile. Also, it’s pretty creepy.
#19.) DO: Document and Have an amazing time. What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas and goes on Facebook (and as of this 2015 update, Instagram and Twitter). Enjoy your getaway with the girlfriends and don’t sweat the small stuff. Whether you’re there for a relaxing time or a non-stop party, live it up and enjoy your time in Sin City. Vegas is easily one of the best cities to be a girl in so enjoy your time with your dolls. Vegas memories are forever. If you enjoy life social media. Create a hashtag for your weekend and decide how you want to share all your fave photos whether it is on dropbox, photo stream, or for the vault.
DON’T: Share Questionable Things on Social Media With IG, twitter, facebook, and the sneaky snapchat, it is all too easy to spread regrettable photos. Don’t post anything you might regret tomorrow or a year from now, and always check with your friends before you post their photos!
#20.) DO: Ask and Be Nice. Anything you want to have or know, just ask. It never hurts. Sometimes you’ll be lucky and get in talks with someone who can help you out for free upgrades or comps. The $20 trick usually works like a charm for a room upgrade as well.
DON’T: Forget to tip. It doesn’t matter how intoxicated you are or budget-conscience you’re trying to be. If you can afford to spend in Vegas, you can afford to tip the people who are contributing to your positive experience. It doesn’t have to be crazy tipping, but tip the people who are making your trip better. Valets, Bellmen, Room Service, Maids, Servers, Cocktail Waitresses, Bartenders, Dealers, and those random costumed people you ask to take a photo with are all among the list you should try never to forget.
BONUS #21 – DON’T: Be a B—- . Intoxicated people do regrettable things in Vegas. Don’t end friendships. The End.
I hope you enjoyed my 20 tips for Vegas Chicks, and hopefully it was helpful for some people. Like and Share! For Vegas vets, what did you think of the list? Did I miss anything?