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Getting Around Las Vegas

The best way to get around Las Vegas is by bus or by taxi. The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) operates 42 routes around the greater Las Vegas Valley, providing easy, affordable transportation along the Strip and to other areas in and around Sin City. There are also bus routes operating 24 hours a day along the Strip and in the downtown area. And you won't find any shortage of cabs should you wish to move around on your own schedule. If you're based along the Strip, the Monorail provides fast transportation to many of the casinos along the northern part of Las Vegas Boulevard. And if you prefer to walk, you won't have an issue finding the way to most of Vegas' top to-dos, though you should arm yourself with plenty of sunscreen and water to avoid heat stroke.

Getting from the McCarran International Airport (LAS) to the Strip is a breeze, since the airport is actually right across the street from Mandalay Bay (you can access it from Wayne Newton Boulevard). Many hotels offer airport shuttle services, and the RTC buses service stops at or near the terminals. Car rentals are also available at the airport (and throughout Las Vegas), but unless you're looking to take a trip to the Hoover Dam or the Grand Canyon, you should opt for another means of transportation. Traffic along the Strip is hectic and parking is both scarce and expensive.

Bus

The RTC operates bus routes throughout the city and the greater Las Vegas Valley. If you plan on sticking close to the Strip and the downtown area, you can rely on two different buses: the Strip & Downtown Express (SDX) and the Deuce. The SDX runs between the LV Premium Outlets down the Strip and the South Strip Transfer Terminal near the airport every day between 9 a.m. and midnight. The Deuce travels from the Fremont Street Experience to the Four Seasons Las Vegas at all hours of the day and night (between midnight and 9 a.m., the Deuce travels as far as the South Strip Transfer Terminal). Both buses run approximately every 15 minutes. Fares on the SDX and the Deuce are paid by time period rather than by individual ride, and passes can be purchased from any ticket vending machine (located at various bus stops around town, as well as 7-Eleven and Walgreens stores). A two-hour pass costs $6; a 24-hour pass costs $8; a three-day pass costs $20; and a 30-day pass costs $65. Note that fares are different for residential routes, which include routes directly servicing the airport terminals.

RTC also operates numerous routes around the greater Las Vegas area. Single rides on residential routes cost $2, and passes — available for periods lasting from two hours to 30 days — range from $3 to $65. The residential routes that will be of most use to visitors are routes 108 and 109 and the Westcliff Airport Express, all of which stop at McCarran International's Terminal 1 and Terminal 3. To learn more about bus routes and ticket options, visit the RTC website.

Taxi Despite the ample bus services, a cab is your best bet for getting around quickly. Taxis cluster along Las Vegas Boulevard and in front of all major hotels, making them very easy to catch. Meters start and around $3.30 with each additional mile costing $2.65. While that may sound like an unnecessary expense, keep in mind that up to five people can travel in the same cab for the same fare.
On Foot Because the Strip can get severely congested, walking is sometimes the best way to get someplace quickly. But even though Las Vegas' main drag is only about 4 miles long, the desert can play tricks on you, making your destination seem closer than in actually is. Before you know it, you can find yourself with a bad sunburn and a case of heat stroke. If you plan to get around on foot, make sure you're meticulous with the sunscreen and armed with plenty of water.
Monorail

The Las Vegas Monorail runs along the the Strip between the MGM Grand and Sahara Avenue. Service starts at 7 a.m. with trains running every four to 12 minutes until midnight on Mondays, 2 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and 3 a.m. Friday through Sunday. What's more, numerous free hotel shuttles service stops along the Monorail route, including the the Rio shuttle, the Palms shuttle and the Hard Rock Hotel shuttle. Single rides cost $5, while unlimited day passes (available for up to seven days) cost between $12 and $56 depending on the length of their validity.

Car Car rentals are available at the McCarran International Airport (LAS) and at many agencies throughout the city. But unless you're planning a visit to the Hoover Dam, Red Rock Canyon or the Grand Canyon, a car will be more trouble than it's worth. If you do bring your own car or rent one for your trip, you'll find yourself growing frustrated while trying to navigate gridlock traffic and locate affordable parking. Plus, don't forget that you'll have to get the car back home at the end of the night, which means that one member of your gang will have to experience Sin City sober.
Shuttle Many Las Vegas hotels offer free shuttle transportation to the airport, Monorail stations and around the Strip. Check with your hotel to see if that service is provided.

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