Las Vegas is the famous U.S. desert oasis. The night life and five star restaurants in showplace hotels and casinos make it a destination like no other. It's the neon capital of North America. Las Vegas is Dino, Frank, and the "Rat Pack." Las Vegas is Wayne Newton, show girls, slot machines, poker tables, and midnight all-you-can-eat buffets.
Las Vegas is also one of the leading trade show and convention and meeting capitals of the world. Thirty five million people visited Las Vegas in 2009, and many of them will return to attend your trade show or exhibition this year. Will they have a memorable experience at your convention booth or trade show exhibit? The Vector Displays
team knows Las Vegas. Our trade show exhibit company personnel has years of experience on both sides of the carpet walk way. Let us put that knowledge to work for you.
Industry-only events like SEMA (Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association), the FABtech Show, plus the SURFACES trade Show and Exhibition and the CES (Consumer Electronics Show) create unique selling opportunities. Vector Displays is one of the trade show exhibit companies that specialize in coordinating these large events for exhibition and event promotion clients. Vector Displays can create a trade show exhibit for you that will capture traffic and maximize your sales efforts. We build trade show displays that get attention, create sales opportunities, and capture buyer interest. Let us show you what we can do by providing you with a proposal for your next display event.
specializes in large format displays for your convention exhibit or trade show displays. Because we work differently, coordinating closely with our clients year after year, we are the perfect choice for both first-time exhibitors and exhibitors who want to increase their presence with larger displays than they had in the past at industry shows.
Contact John Monteith, JohnM@VectorDisplays.com
, or call us toll-free at 888-299-3119.
Frequently asked questions about visiting Las Vegas for a trade show or convention:
What is Las Vegas really like for a first time visitor?
You will be dazzled by Las Vegas. It is a sensory overload of neon, crowds, sights and sounds. Everything is built bigger in Las Vegas. The list of "must see" and "must do" things is longer than your time and budget will probably allow. The options can seem overwhelming, but with advanced planning you can have the trip of a lifetime and still get some work done.
Listed below are answers to other questions our clients often ask us before they exhibit in Las Vegas for the first time.
What clothes should I pack to wear in Las Vegas?
Las Vegas is located in the desert, but it's in a valley between two mountain ranges. During fall and winter months, it can be colder than you might think after sunset. When you pack your bags, bring long pants and sweaters and jackets because you will want to walk outside between the many hotel/casinos.
Even if you plan to take shuttle buses or taxis, you'll be glad you were dressed correctly if you are visiting between October and April. The rest of the year the weather is as you would expect in a desert: hot and very dry. Casual dress is the norm for most social activities, visits to the casino floors, and many of the shows. The glamorous era of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr. does live on in Las Vegas. Some clubs, concerts, and big name events will require both ladies and gentlemen to "dress." Few shows require a tuxedo for men, but if you want to live the lifestyle, you'll be welcomed as if you are a member of the "Rat Pack." Many tourists spend their entire visit in short pants, t-shirts, and athletic shoes. It's easy to fit in and feel welcomed in Las Vegas.
If you will be working either side of the isle at a larger trade show, remember to bring comfortable shoes. You'll cover a lot of ground from the hotel to the show and all around any of the convention halls, especially in the huge Las Vegas Convention Center. Even the facilities in a single hotel, used by smaller conventions, may have you walking much more that you do at home.
After the show ends each day, you'll want to go from the Strip to Freemont Street or hop from casino to casino. The night life never ends. Don't let tired feet spoil the fun. Make sure your shoes are comfortable and "broken in" before your trip. New shoes are almost as bad as uncomfortable shoes.
Bring a swimsuit, too. You may not want to spend hours at the pool when there is so much to see and do, but a quick dip and a few laps can do wonders to rejuvenate your energy.
Also bring your camera and sunglasses to Las Vegas. You'll need both.
What's the typical weather in Las Vegas?
Las Vegas has more than 300 days of sunshine a year. When it does rain, it's quick and hard, then gone. The local annual rainfall is about 4 inches (10.5 cm), so it's no surprise that the relative humidity rate is under 30% day and night, year around.
Average Temperatures in Las Vegas
Source: National Weather Service
|| 39ºF [4ºC ]
41ºF [5ºC ]
49ºF [9ºC ]
46ºF [8ºC ]
39ºF [4ºC ]
|| 58ºF [14ºC]
What are some good Web sites to find hotel bargains and discount show tickets in Las Vegas?
for hotel discounts. Click www.GoToTickets.com and www.Tix4Tonight.com for show ticket discounts.
Can you provide us with some basic Las Vegas visitor information that would help us with our planning?
Absolutely! Listed below is information that we at Vector Displays hope helps you with your Las Vegas trip planning.
The United States uses 110 to 120 volts AC (60 cycles) connecting by electrical outlets accepting a common North American plug (with two flat parallel pins). These are standard requirements for electrical devices and appliances in the USA. Visitors from Europe, South America, Japan and many other parts of the world will need an electrical adapter for laptops, grooming tools, or other electronic devices or appliances. Power converters/adapters are a convenient solution and cost much less when purchased at home before traveling. Most international airports, including McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, have power converters available for purchase.
Las Vegas is one of the safest cities in the world because most visitors are clustered in specific areas of town around the hotels, casinos, and attractions. Security is tight in these areas, but you should never assume there is no crime. Any big city has crime, so take the same precautions that you would in any large city or at home. Be aware of your surroundings and stay away from areas that look deserted or situations that appear threatening. Travel in groups and feel free to visit any of the many wonderful attractions, restaurants, and casinos that are available- just use common sense.
If you gamble, keep an eye on your wallet/purse, your change bucket (used at the slot machines), or your gaming chips. If there is an incident, police and security personnel are generally highly visible. Resist the temptation to participate in illegal "extracurricular activities." The inclination to invoke the advertising slogan, "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas," is absolutely wrong. When tourists are arrested, they are treated no differently that any local citizen. A night in jail and the need to return to the city for a court appearance can be hard to explain to employers, family, and friends back home.
The universal telephone number for police and all municipal emergency responders, including medical assistance, is 911 anywhere in the USA. This number is always toll-free, and your location is automatically reported to the operator receiving your call. It is important to note that this location reporting feature is not functional when dialed from a cell phone. You will need to identify your location verbally, in English, for the fastest response to your exact location. Police and security services are very good in Las Vegas; many hotels and casinos have their own medical responders on staff.
The telephone area code for Las Vegas is 702.
Cell phone coverage is good in Las Vegas, in all the hotels/casinos, at McCarran International Airport, and in the Las Vegas Convention Center facility. Any major North American carrier you use is operating in Las Vegas or has a roaming agreement there. Ask your cell phone provider about this before you leave home.
There is one more important thing visitors need to know about cell phones in Las Vegas. The casinos will not allow you to use a cell phone while you are seated or actively playing on the gaming floor. You will be asked to leave if you answer a ringing phone. Turn your phone off or set it to vibrate. Because of the noise and excitement on the gaming floors, you probably won't hear your phone ring any way. Gambling laws enforced by the Nevada Gaming Commission will not allow you to carry a cell phone, pager, or PDA device with texting capability into any sports book section of a casino.
Most convention and/or trade show visitors will find the transportation options around the city are many and varied. Depending on where you start and your destination around the city, you might consider the following options.
A taxi is probably the quickest way from one side of town to the other or from one hotel/casino to another attraction/show/concert/event.
The Las Vegas Monorail is only a few years old. If you are a first time visitor or haven't been to Las Vegas in years, it is a convenient way to get around.
The local public transportation consists of the usual city bus and a smaller hop-on/hop-off trolley car network.
Your convention show host may arrange for shuttle bus service from all the major hotels to the Las Vegas Convention Center. These dedicated and destination- specific buses are usually free and probably the most convenient way for you to get from your hotel to the convention show floor, especially if you are working in a booth or are a buyer.
The cost of cab rides can add up quickly. The buses, trolley, and shuttles are slow and stick to their schedules, not yours. You may be tempted to rent a car. All the car rental companies have booths at McCarran International Airport and at most of the major hotels. A "hire" car, as the British say, may be a good choice if you will be going to odd destinations with local friends or are planning trips outside Las Vegas. It is best to reserve your car before leaving home if you want the lowest cost or a specific vehicle, like a multi-passenger van. Having a car at your disposal may sound good, but remember you will be valet parking it at any hotel/casino, which includes a parking fee and tipping the runners.
There is a 7.75 percent sales tax on retail purchases and a minimum 9% tax on all hotel rooms in Las Vegas. This tourist tax is slightly higher at 11% on hotel rooms at the high profile properties downtown and near the Fremont Street Experience.
Las Vegas is in the USA/Pacific Time Zone, the far western most time zone in the continental USA. All of California, Oregon, Washington State, Utah, and Arizona share this local time zone. International travelers can compute local time. Las Vegas is GMT/UTC -8 hours.
Do's & Don'ts
It's best to not bring personal electronic items into the casino. All players must be at least 21 years old- no exceptions.
Las Vegas is in a desert, and your body will need fluids, especially in the summer months. Drink water frequently, much more than you probably do at home. You may not feel thirsty, but your body will be perspiring. You won't notice because the low relative humidity will disguise the perspiration. You won't feel hot and sweaty like you might at home during a summer day outdoors. You need to remember to drink regularly. Carry a bottle of water with you- everyone else will have one, too.
In the movies, Frank and Dino were shown drinking martinis but remember that alcohol is a fluid that your body retains, and it only increases the speed of dehydration.
Also bring sunscreen with you to Las Vegas and use it, even if you don't intend to spend much time outside. You'll see more sun than you think waiting for shuttle buses and going from the hotel to the convention center. Many of the larger trade shows, like the SEMA show, have exhibits and demonstration areas outside the building where you will also be exposed to the sun.
Most of the USA is moving to the adoption of no-smoking zones or outright bans on cigarettes. This is true at McCarran International Airport upon your arrival and at the Las Vegas Convention Center facility during the trade show. Smoking is permitted on most casino floors in most of the resorts and in bars that don't serve food. Most hotels will offer a choice of smoking or non-smoking rooms when requested, but it is rarely allowed in public areas such as restaurants, hotel lobbies, spa/swimming pools, and other common areas.
Money and Financial Transactions
Credit or charge cards are widely accepted throughout Las Vegas. As international travelers (and some US residents), you should alert your credit card company of your travel plans so they don't deny charges, solely because the transaction is happening outside your common travel areas. Visa, MasterCard, and American Express are accepted universally; Discover, Diners Club, and Carte Blanche are also generally accepted.
International travelers will find acceptance of Barclays and other bank cards, plus enRoute, Euro Card, and JCB. Cash machines, or ATMs, (Automated Teller Machines) are as common as they are at home. All hotels and casinos have the ability to cash personal checks for a fee. Many independent check-cashing businesses are located across the city near attractions. They can also handle out-of-state personal checks with the verification of your personal identification. Be sure to ask about all fees and transaction charges in advance of using any currency service. Fees can vary, so it is worth it to ask in advance.
Each visitor to Las Vegas has a different travel budget, and your expenses will depend on your expectation of lodging, travel, and entertainment. You do not need to be a guest in a hotel to visit the casino floor, see a show, or eat in a restaurant inside the big name properties. In fact, one of the fun things about Las Vegas is visiting all the major properties to see them first hand. Stay where your budget allows and visit every hotel on the strip and then make your way to Freemont Street, too. Las Vegas has infinite options and choices to fit your time, budget, and expectations. Each hotel competes for your business and the convention traveler. Tourists like you are the life-blood of Las Vegas.
Discounts and special offers are available on food and lodging throughout the city. You can pay less than $50 for a room to well over $10,000 a night. Prices also vary widely depending on the time of year. It's also interesting that rooms cost more during the week and less on Saturday and Sunday. This is because the conventions are in session Monday to Friday in most cases.
Many trade show coordinators need low-priced accommodations for large groups. Low cost does not mean out of the way or second class hotels. Your convention event planner may make special room rates available with your trade show reservations. Alternate hotels may also be less expensive. You will find many of the lower priced hotels offer a quiet, comfortable room without restaurants, casino floors, or shows. They are located next door to or within easy walking distance to the larger properties in Las Vegas. It's easy for two people to eat well and have a great time in Las Vegas for about US$100 a day, plus the cost of a hotel room. If you have a larger budget or want to splurge financially, you can choose from many world-famous restaurants and spend more than that per person for dinner.
The Bellagio hotel and casino is more famous now, because of its starring role in the remakes of the Oceans 11 movies. The water fountain in front dances with the music played through the hotel/casino as well as out front on Las Vegas Boulevard.
Treasure Island has the pirate ship and show in front. The sirens attract the pirates several times a night.
The Stratosphere is a space needle into the desert sky and the tallest structure for thousands of miles. It's a spectacular view, whether it's from the rotating restaurant or the viewing platform on top. If you want a real thrill and are brave enough, buy a ticket on the roller coaster or the zero-gravity thrill ride in the open air atop the building.
The Mirage hotel has an "active volcano" that erupts on a schedule.
The Excalibur welcomes all "knights" to the round table and looks like Aladdin's castle.
The Luxor hotel has an Egyptian theme with mummies and servant girls. At night, a laser beam of light shoots skyward from the pyramid top. The beacon can be seen across the desert and from space. It's a sight to behold.
New York and Paris are recreated on the strip of Las Vegas Boulevard with hotels named after the cities.
The MGM Grand, the Rio, the Sahara, the Flamingo, and Bally's are all names that mean, "We are in Las Vegas, baby!" Las Vegas is ever changing, growing and getting bigger and better. Plan to enjoy yourself.
Las Vegas is a tourist city that lives off the hospitality trade. As such, tipping is common and expected for good service. You'll find most staff in restaurants, bars, hotels, casinos, and shows are very attentive for this reason. Remember that many staff employees are paid a minimum hourly wage and make most of their income from tips. No one wants to over/under tip, so here are a few common situations.
Expect to tip US$2.00 per bag for assistance when arriving/departing from McCarran International Airport. The same is true of the welcome staff at your hotel If you are using concierge services, a US$5 tip is closer to the correct amount.
Taxi drivers usually receive 15%-20% of the metered rate. Your group may arrange bus tours of area attractions, like the Hoover Dam. You should plan to tip US$1.00-$2.00 per person at the end of the tour.
If you arrive by personal auto, you should tip US$2.00-$3.00 to the valet parking staff, more if you request speedy service or will be coming and going frequently.
Your hotel housekeeping staff should also be tipped. They will probably be invisible to you as you spend time at the trade show floor. A tip of US$2.00 a day is a good tip for housekeeping services. Room service is available in most hotel and the tip should be 20% of the tab, but don't be lazy. There are so many choices- go out to eat even if it's is inside or near your convention hotel. A stroll after dinner is a good way to unwind. Don't forget your dealers and slot attendants. A small bet for the dealer is the usual method of tipping at gaming tables. A small tip is also appropriate for keno runners and slot attendants.
If you're a fan of the game, you'll want to visit one of the many Las Vegas courses.
Walking and your Safety
The Las Vegas Strip is more than five miles long from the Luxor Hotel on the south end of Las Vegas Boulevard to the Stratosphere Hotel on the north side. Walking is a convenient way to get around, but attempting to hike too great a distance is foolish. Because of the huge signs and bright lights, it is easy to assume you are closer to a destination than you are. For your safety, please follow a few suggestions from those of us who visit regularly and have walked from one end to the other.
First, carry your identification at all times. Carrying a cell phone is also a good idea. Las Vegas is generally a safe city, with excellent security. However, once you leave the hotels and casinos, there may not be instantaneous help available. Like any major city, Las Vegas is not immune from petty and violent crime.
Do not walk far down a side street or alleyway. Do not take shortcuts or follow strangers off the beaten path. Do not strike up random conversations with new friends on street corners, especially if they invite you to join them at a party or in their hotel room.
When walking on any section of The Strip that is not a hotel or casino, it IS legal to hand out advertising flyers to passers-by on the sidewalk. You will be offered flyers and magazines, many of them containing advertisements for sexually-based "entertainment". These services have questionable reliability, and may be "technically" legal in Las Vegas. We strongly suggest you resist the temptation to accept these "adult entertainment" options. The people handing out the flyers will not bother you or harass you, once they know you are not interested, so don't hold out your hand or take any offered flyer. Do NOT let this legal form of advertising deter you from walking from hotel to hotel or other destinations.
is a trade show exhibit company that provides trade show displays, convention booth exhibits, and trade show exhibit stands to major shows in Las Vegas, NV and around the world. To obtain a quote for your next show, contact John Monteith, JohnM@VectorDisplays.com
, or call us toll-free at 888-299-3119.
Visit our web site at www.VectorDisplays.com
or read about the Industry-only trade shows like the SEMA
(Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association - www.SEMA.org
) show and the CES
(Consumer Electronics Show - www.CESWEB.org
Copyright © 2008-2010 All Rights Reserved