Dos and Don’ts

Common Sense: “Although there are broad limits here, it’s not ‘everything goes.’ The Las Vegas advertising slogan is ‘What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,’ but don’t believe it. Just ask O.J. Simpson and Britney Spears! Please come and have a great trip, but don’t leave your common sense behind.”—Bob Dancer, columnist, Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Children: “If you’re traveling with children, you should know that some of the nicest casino-hotels do not want your business. When you make your reservations, make it clear who's in your traveling party.”—Bob Dancer.

Rental Cars: “You don’t need to rent a car. It’s expensive, and there’s enough to do on the Strip by just walking around. Make an effort to learn the public transportation system—buses, trams, free shuttles, etc.—to save money and time. If you’re visiting the Valley of Fire, for instance, rent a car only for one day.”—Jeffrey Compton, columnist, Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Player’s Clubs: “Always join the player’s club at casinos. It’s free, and there are a lot of benefits, even if you only play one dime, such as tempting gifts for new members and half-price hotel room offers on return trips. Before you get excited about casino promotions, fully understand the rules to see if you can really participate [e.g., if you have to be present to win].”—Jeffrey Compton.

Advance Planning: “Have a battle plan that includes things to do when you run out of money. That way, you can still enjoy Vegas and see a little more of the city, too.”—Juliana Shallcross, senior editor, Hotelchatter.com.

Clubbing: “If you’re worried about being bored by nightlife during a weekday stay [when room rates are cheaper!], then you don’t know Vegas. There are tons of shows [it’s the Broadway of the West, plus Cirque du Soleil is everywhere] and nightclubs are always popping. A good night to go clubbing is Sunday, when there are more locals out and no bachelor/bachelorette parties.”—Juliana Shallcross.

Getting Around: “To explore, the city has a monorail system that runs alongside the Strip. The only problem is that it drops you off behind the hotels, and it can be a long walk through one hotel and across the street to another hotel. [Try taking the monorail from MGM to Caesars Palace and you’ll see what we mean.] Wear comfortable shoes or just take a cab.”—Juliana Shallcross

Phrase Book

All In: When a player bets all of his or her chips.

Cage: Where casino cashiers exchange chips for money, and vice versa.

Comps: Free (i.e., “complimentary”) rooms, buffet passes, show tickets, and so on, given to frequent gamblers.

Eye in the Sky: A casino’s high-tech camera surveillance network.

High Roller: A gambler who wagers large amounts of money.

House Edge: The statistical advantage that the casino maintains over the player.

Let It Ride: To roll over your winnings into another bet.

Loose Slots: Slot machines with above-average payouts.

One-Armed Bandit: A slot machine.

Pit Boss: A table games supervisor on the casino floor.

RFB: Room, food, and beverage comps.

Tapped Out: Broke, out of money.

Toke: A tip or gratuity (short for “token”).

Ultra Lounge: A mod cocktail bar, often with VIP table service, DJ-driven beats, and sexy sofas for sprawling.

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