Packing for any sort of vacation can be an exciting experience unless you leave some of the most important items behind.
In some cases, these omissions can be the difference between a stellar vacation and one you can’t wait to forget about.
One of the most popular vacation destinations in the United States, Las Vegas, is a spot that requires a very particular set of items you must bring. Depending on what time of the year you visit, the smallest of items can make all the difference.
Before you hop on a plane to Vegas, here are seven things every first-timer should bring along.
1 ‒ Comfortable Shoes
I cannot stress the importance of the first item on this list enough.
If you show up to Las Vegas without at least one pair of comfortable shoes, you might be in serious trouble. While there are several different modes of transportation all around the city, most tourists will find themselves doing a great deal of walking.
The best and most popular attractions in Las Vegas are scattered all around the city. It doesn’t matter if you prefer gambling on the Strip or Downtown, odds are you’ll be walking from one casino to the next.
As it turns out, many of those casinos are farther away from each other than you might initially think.
During my first trip to Las Vegas, it seemed like everyone advised me to bring a few pairs of comfortable shoes. Despite all of this sage advice, I opted to fly into Sin City wearing boots and blue jeans.
That was the first of many mistakes I made during that trip. That night, as I was tending to a series of uncomfortable blisters, I couldn’t help but remember everyone who tried to warn me.
So, before you repeat the same mistake, consider prioritizing function over form. You might think that your outward appearance is the most important part of any vacation outfit.
However, trust me when I say that you won’t regret throwing on the more comfortable shoes before you stroll down the Vegas Strip.
2 ‒ Enough Funds for the Entire Stay
Las Vegas can be as affordable or as expensive as you want to make it. One of the best aspects of the city is that it truly appeals to all sorts of people from different classes and levels of wealth.
The variety of dining options, hotels, resorts, and casinos truly caters to a broad spectrum of vacation-goers.
However, just because it can be an affordable vacation destination, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t carefully budget before embarking on your trip. There’s nothing worse than running out of money before it’s time to head back home.
When you’re mapping everything out before you book a vacation, consider everything you’ll need to budget for.
- Travel expenses, including airfare and ride sharing services/taxis upon arrival
- Room, board, and resort fees
- Food and drink
- Entertainment, including shows and attractions around Las Vegas
- Your bankroll for gambling
Most of the items on this list are easy to budget for. You should know how much a roundtrip plane ticket, hotel room, and entertainment expenses will cost. All of these things can usually be booked in advance.
However, the final item on the list is where many first-time Vegas goers run into trouble. A person’s bankroll, or amount strictly spent on gambling, can be entirely unpredictable.
Before you go to Las Vegas, it’s important to keep a dollar amount in your mind so that you know how much or how little you feel comfortable devoting to gambling.
3 ‒ A Well-Rested Body and Mind
Vacationing in Las Vegas is a taxing experience.
The desert climate can take many travelers by surprise, especially if they’re used to more moderate weather conditions. Additionally, as I mentioned, expect to do a fair amount of walking during your stay.
Finally, the city is essentially open 24/7 and it can be challenging to be disciplined enough to call it a night to get enough sleep.
Speaking from experience, you should arrive in Las Vegas well-rested, as you might get a lot less sleep than you normally do. The city is truly iconic and mesmerizing for tourists, meaning that many will want to soak up as much of the city as possible.
Don’t be surprised to find yourself completely and utterly exhausted by the end of your vacation.
4 ‒ The Right Traveling Party
For a city as large as Las Vegas, nothing makes it feel smaller than visiting with the wrong types of people. Sometimes, this is completely out of your control.
Whether it’s your friend’s bachelor party, family vacation, or even a work trip, you might not have the final say in who you get to experience Vegas with for the first time.
But if you do have some sort of say in the matter, do everything you can to travel with people you’ll enjoy. You see, visiting Las Vegas is a much different experience than other popular vacation destinations.
While Las Vegas appeals to a wide variety of people, its primary appeal is the casinos and resorts. If you’re someone who loves to gamble but travels alongside those who couldn’t care less for it, you can see where potential issues might arise.
Additionally, as you might know, casinos can bring out the worst in people. So, you can imagine what a city with the most casinos in the United States can do to some people.
Sometimes, what happens in Vegas doesn’t stay in Vegas. Make sure you trust everyone in your entourage to act appropriately and gamble responsibly.
5 ‒ Some Sort of Gambling Experience
If you plan to spend time gambling in Vegas, you should try to come prepared.
Countless visitors get their first taste of gambling inside a Las Vegas casino, and it isn’t the end of the world if that happens to you. It’s certainly one of the most exhilarating and entertaining spots to be introduced to the world of gambling.
However, if you come to Las Vegas without a shred of gambling experience, you might be in for a long trip.
Like any other casino, Vegas casinos are great at taking money away from unsuspecting novice gamblers. Some might consider it an initiation, but losing money in Vegas isn’t necessary.
Before you head to Sin City, try to practice in a more relaxed environment like your local casino, or even online.
6 ‒ Versatile Clothing
Walking up and down the Strip, you’re likely to encounter plenty of tourists dressed in a variety of clothing. The veteran move while in Vegas is to attempt to combine style and comfort, especially if you’re visiting during the summer months.
Bringing a versatile wardrobe to Las Vegas is of the utmost importance. At times, the city calls for a more relaxed garb, while other hot spots are a bit more dignified and upscale. You certainly don’t want to feel stuffy in a casual environment, nor do you want to feel out of place in a more luxurious setting.
Many of the popular casinos and resorts also offer their customers access to pools or other water-based attractions. So, make sure to pack a swimsuit and flips flops.
You can always pick one up at the hotel gift shop, but who wants to spend precious gambling dollars on something you could have brought from home?
7 ‒ A Good Attitude
One of the best things that can come out of a trip to Las Vegas is a pleasant memory that will last a lifetime.
More often than not, tourists come away from Vegas with positive feedback. But there’s also plenty of people who swear they will never step foot in the city again.
All it comes down to is the person in question and the attitude with which they approach the city.
When you are planning a trip to Las Vegas, make sure to have an open mind and arrive with a pleasant attitude. You might not do all that well at the blackjack and craps tables, but there’s plenty of stuff to do outside of the casinos.
If the entire trip hinges on your performance at the casino, you might come away from the experience disappointed. There will be plenty of future opportunities to win some money in Vegas.
But you only get one shot at your first impression of Las Vegas; try to make it a good one.
There are a few things every tourist can bring to Las Vegas that can easily improve the quality of their trip.
When you’re packing, make sure to bring comfortable footwear and some versatile clothing. The city offers a variety of entertainment options that call for all different types of clothing.
If you can, try to get plenty of rest before you arrive. First-timer travelers might find it hard to return to their hotel rooms once they see everything Vegas has to offer.
Finally, come to Las Vegas with an open mind so you can have as much fun as possible.