Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Shake the glitter off your clothes now

On the flight back from my Vegas Vacation, I sorted through my receipts as I wanted to know the exact damage done to my wallet from my 5 days of non-stop fun in Sin City. It was not the cheapest vacation that I’ve taken, but it was incredibly exciting and I enjoyed the time spent with my sister & cousins plus their significant others, and of course, with my Eye Candy. The best part is that I was able to pay for all my expenses and treat my sister from my Vacation Fund. I didn’t hit the jackpot while in Vegas, but my entire trip is paid in full!

Note: I didn’t actually do any gambling. As I have just gotten my finances in order, I couldn’t bear to lose any of money. Everyone in my group behaved responsibility and set themselves a limit for play each day. The key was knowing when to walk away, and I’m pleased to report that my Eye Candy even came ahead by a few bucks.

Below shows just my portion of the trip (unless otherwise specified) so if you’re thinking about planning your own getaway, I hope it helps you establish a budget.  

Flight + Hotel

$861 for me to fly from Montreal-Toronto-Las Vegas return with 4-nights accommodations at the Luxor pyramid resort. Rate based on double occupancy and booked with Air Canada vacations.

$88 in resort fees. Obligatory. No amount of haggling could get me out of these.   

Shows & Entertainment

$116 for Viva Elvis performed by Cirque du Soleil. This show is more Broadway entertainment than gymnastic acrobats, but it was the perfect first night out on the town. I purchased these tickets online at ahead of the trip and received a free seat upgrade (for everyone in my party).

$115 for Peep Show starring Holly Madison. The Planet Hollywood was advertising this show the last time my EC and I were in Vegas, but it wasn’t on stage yet. I was with the perfect crowd to see this show and Holly’s quest for someone to read her naughty nursey rhymes before bed kept me entertained. The best part? Since we were a group of 7, I negotiated with the kiosk lady to sit us in the VIP section so we were incredibly close to the stage… so close that my Eye Candy was picked from the audience and brought up on stage! He did walk away as the runner-up to be Holly’s next boyfriend… I suppose her loss was my gain. I highly recommend this show to anyone looking for something fun and frivolous, and with a crowd that doesn’t take themselves to seriously.

Dinner & drinks, and more drinks, and more drinks

Hotel prices may be cheap in Vegas, but they sure do hit you at your wallet. We enjoyed a mix of high & low dining and this where most of my Vegas moo-la-la went.

While Vegas is far from being an all inclusive,
just walking the Strip is free & fabulously fun.
$60: late afternoon lunch + 3 glasses of wine on the patio of the Monte Carlo hotel
$20: night time cap + appetizer at Nine Fine Irishmen at NY NY (my favourite Vegas pub)
$15: breakfast at the Pyramid Café
$55: dinner at IN & OUT BURGER where I had the best beer of my life… everyone needs to order a pitcher of Hefeweizen now.
$20: 2 glasses of wine at the Eye Candy Lounge which I enjoyed while watching my EC win ‘em at Black Jack at Mandala Bay’s casino
$15: hotdog + glass of wine at the poolside Pyramid Café bar. What can I say? I was soaking up the sun and not in the mood for anything healthier. But in my defense, I had already hit the gym for a morning run session. J
$100: splurged on an amazing 5* dinner at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon French laundry dinner and enjoyed a bottle of wine. I’m a foodie in the making! 
$16: lunch at Wabo Cabo
$25: combined total of morning Starbucks runs (this is a must as Vegas screams late nights)
$7: enjoyed a gelato while strolling through Caesar’s Palace. I had to… it just seemed like the Italian thing to do.
$50: dinner and drinks at the RockStar Saloon
$24: drinks at the Pleasure Pitt. Don’t let the name fool you! It’s the right mix of classy and scandalous so all the ladies in our group had a great time too.

Memories over monuments

$25 for a round of beer pong at O’Sheas. It was my treat and I was the official ref. This was obviously played after our 5* star dining experience where our entire group was dressed to the nines and had surprisingly great aim even as the game progressed. Props go to my sister who creamed the boys and left as our champion.

$32 on the world’s cheesiest gondola ride at The Venetian hotel. I skipped this on my last trip and regretted it so I convinced by EC to join me this time (ie: I bought his ticket). I wish I had skipped it – it was too cheesy even for Vegas.

$10 to ride to the top of the Eiffel Tower for a stunning view of The Strip. This would have been worth it, but unfortunately, my cousin dropped his iPhone while taking pictures from the top. Seriously. Other than the 3G, no one was hurt and we’re pleased to report that gravity works.

Shopping & such

$132 at a little boutique Maude where I bought 2 of the most stunning dresses ever and a chic black romper. I blatantly asked my sister to talk me out of making the purchases, but she just couldn’t do it. Fortunately for me, it was buy 2 get one 1 free so I practically had no choice but to make these additions to my closet.

$53 for tacky souvenirs. These included a Vegas branded sparkly thermos, cute tote bags, and the Hangover baby strapped t-shirt for my cousin. He was wearing this while explaining to hotel security about the iPhone mishap so this memory alone is priceless.

$27 miscellaneous snacks

$20 for taxis throughout the week. Each hotel is about 1.5 km long and there is only so much walking that a girl can do in heels.

$35 for my share of our airport parking

Hit me baby!

The grand total of my five-day Vegas Vacation is $1,921. I wasn’t expecting a cheap get-away nor did I live like a high-roller while in Vegas. The important part is that I saved up for my time away, didn’t splurge on “vacation” clothes ahead of time like I used to do, and chose to put my money towards some fun treats instead of gambling.  It was the perfect chance for to escape and have some fun with the family (the 21-34 years old crowd that is).

We’re already talking about where we should hit up next year: ziplining across Costa Rica or smoking cigars in Cuba? Wherever we chose, I’ll gladly start an envelope with its name on it.



  1. Sounds like you had a great time and were responsible about your money. You should feel good about that :)

  2. Vegas is such a fun & frivilous city, but you're right... I'm glad I stayed responsible!