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Las Vegas Conventions: Top Tips & Things To Do

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Mirage Volcano | Las Vegas Conventions
Mirage Volcano

With a sunny climate, huge event venues, and affordable accommodations, Las Vegas is a popular convention town. The resorts and casinos start to hop after the seminars let out for the day. There is a tremendous amount of entertainment packed into the “Strip” (Las Vegas Boulevard). Our Las Vegas convention top tips and suggestions for things to do will help you make the most of your downtime.

The Strip | Las Vegas Boulevard | Nevada, USA
The Strip | Las Vegas Boulevard | Nevada, USA
Las Vegas Convention: Tips & Things To Do At-A-Glance

For more information on Las Vegas travel see our Working Joe Travel posts on:

Show Time | Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas
Show Time | Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas

Las Vegas Convention Top Tips:

  • If there is a specific show you can’t miss, order your tickets when you send in the convention deposit. Popular Las Vegas shows sell out months in advance.

  • Before leaving home, download and study a map of your hotel complex. The resorts are massive. It can be frustrating if you have no idea of where to go.

  • Before leaving home, print a copy of the convention’s agenda. Once you get there you will find that there have been changes , but the basic timetable generally remain the same. Familiarizing with it will allow you to buy tickets and schedule activities for your downtime with confidence.

  • If you are not staying in the hotel complex where the convention is being held, book a room as close as possible. Everything appears close on the map, but is actually quite spread out. Stay close to the convention to minimize travel time and maximize fun time.

"Ka" Cirque du Soleil | Bellagio Convention Center
"Ka" Cirque du Soleil | Bellagio Convention Center
  • Upon check-in, inquire about where your room is located. Most convention-goers will be booked into a specific block of rooms. Within this footprint, a smile and five dollars will go a long way toward securing a room with a view, near the elevator, or whatever your specific need is.

  • When you arrive at your room, immediately take a picture of the door with the room number on it. This will help when you get lost or forget where your room is located.

  • Bring two pairs of comfortable shoes (1 for business and 1 for fun). The resort complexes are massive. You will do a lot of walking on hard surfaces moving between your room, auditoriums, and buffets (and in the casino, out on the strip, shopping, etc.).

  • Bring a cross-body bag to hold swag and essentials. Each morning pack a lite weight sweater or jacket (when you stop moving it gets cold in the AC), water (it is a dry climate), and Tylenol (for the crowds and last’s nights drinking). Also, pack hand sanitizer, a mask, portable chargers, and essential cords.

Las Vegas Boulevard | The Strip | Nevada, USA
Las Vegas Boulevard | The Strip | Nevada, USA
  • Drinks in the casinos are usually free. Waitresses circulating the floor will take your order and serve you (make sure to tip!). Generally, the higher the stakes the better the service becomes. Remember: nothing in Vegas is actually free. The alcohol is to keep you playing.

  • Expect lines. Conventions in Vegas can be enormous. The hotels are experts at moving crowds, but lines are inevitable. If you don’t like them, be strategic. Arrive early. As panels wind down, exit to beat the crowd.

  • When stuck in line, make the most of it. Talk to people about your plan for the night. Likely, someone has already done it. We get some of our best tips this way.

  • Out on the Strip, when you take a photo with a burlesque performer or character there is an expectation of payment. Always decide on a price before taking the photo.

  • Beware of salespeople hawking discount tickets on the street. If you want discount tickets to a show, go online or to the Tix4Tonight kiosks located on the Strip.

The Flamingo | Las Vegas Strip | Nevada
The Flamingo | Las Vegas Strip | Nevada

Personal Safety: At all times, be aware of your personal safety. Travel in groups. If alone, tell someone where you are going. Keep valuables in a zipped pockets or a front-facing cross body bag. Stick to populated areas until you learn the lay of the land. Be aware that you may see nudity, aggressive sales, panhandling, and people who are under the influence.

Fountain Show | Bellagio Hotel & Casino
Fountain Show | Bellagio Hotel & Casino

Money Saving Tips:

  • Take advantage of the many free attractions Las Vegas has to offer. Read our article Guide to Las Vegas Attractions for the top ten free hotel/casino attractions.

  • If you have good self-control, play the cheapest slots and people watch in a casino for free before and after dinner drinks.

  • When you arrive at your hotel, find the nearest convenience store to stock up on drinks, food, and snacks to keep in your room. This can save you a huge amount of money when compared to room service, stocked mini-bars, and hotel kiosks.

  • Stock up on extra water and snacks at conference snack tables and buffets.

  • Take advantage of what is around you. Cabs and Ubers can get expensive.

Cirque du Soleil Show | Las Vegas, Nevada
Cirque du Soleil Show | Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas Convention Top Ten Things To Do

  1. If you love a spectacle, you must see a show. In 2021, there were 7 Cirque du Soleil shows playing on the Strip. There are long running magic, burlesque, comic, musical, and adult shows as well as concert venues that host short-term, big-name acts. We go to the site for an overview of shows and ticket prices. Go to the Tix 4Tonight kiosks up and down the boulevard for discounted day-of performances.

  2. Have dinner, shop, and bar hop in the Venetian/Palazzo’s Shoppes of the Grand Canal. Check out the resort’s Grand Promenade, Town Center, and meandering canals (complete with gondolas) as you stroll along enjoying the Italian-inspired frescoes and sculptures. See replicas of the Rialto Bridge, San Marcos Square, and St. Mark’s Campanile.

  3. Walk the strip. See our article Guide to Walking the Las Vegas Strip for more detail.

  4. Reserve a night to take in the Mirage’s Volcano, the Atlantis Show at Caesars Palace, the Bellagio’s fountain show, and the Paris Las Vegas Eiffel Tower light show – all free. Read our article Guide to Las Vegas Attractions for more detail.

  5. If you love thrills spend an evening at the STRAT Tower. At the top of the tower there are revolving restaurants, bars, and an observation deck. For adrenalin junkies there are three extreme rides: The Insanity, Big Shot, and X-Scream. Each suspends you over the edge of 109 stories in some way.

  6. For a fun night of bar hopping and people watching concentrate on the middle of the strip. Start out exploring Planet Hollywood, move on the Paris Las Vegas, and end your night at the pedestrian-friendly Lynx Promenade.

  7. Take a night tour of the Strip. After dinner and a few drinks, hop on an open-top bus tour. It is extremely affordable, safe, and taking in the neon from this vantage is spectacular.

  8. Spend the evening on a casino stroll (entertaining and educational).

  9. Schedule some spa time – every hotel complex has one.

  10. Do a Vegas club hop. This will be expensive, and expect to be out late. Also, expect dress codes, cover charges, and long lines.

Paris Las Vegas | The Strip | Convention Center
Paris Las Vegas | The Strip | Convention Center

Happy Convention Going, Laura and Randy

For more information on Las Vegas travel see our Working Joe Travel posts on:


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