Planning an International Trip to Las Vegas
Are you planning an international trip to Las Vegas? Whether it's your first time in the States or if you're a frequent visitor, Las Vegas offers one of the most unique experiences in the entire country. After months of planning and a long flight to Las Vegas, you want to make sure that you don't encounter any issues during your trip. You'll want to know where to stay, what to do, and how to prepare when you holiday in the infamous Sin City. Our Las Vegas vacation guide for international travelers can help you plan the perfect getaway from start to finish!
Tips for Planning a Las Vegas Vacation
So you've decided that your next holiday destination is Las Vegas - how do you begin planning? Here's a basic checklist to ensure that you're ready!
You must have a valid passport to enter the United States, including Las Vegas. The customs line at the Harry Reid Airport (LAS) may be long depending on your time of arrival, so be sure that you don't book tickets for shows or reserve activities for at least a few hours after you land.
If you plan to gamble or drink alcohol, always keep your passport on your person and remember that the drinking age in the United States is 21.
Flights to Las Vegas
It is always wise to book your international flight to Las Vegas well in advance; however, because Las Vegas is a top destination for travelers around the world, you can often find last-minute deals on flights from a variety of airlines. Flight prices depend greatly on weekdays versus weekends, the time of year, and any large events occurring in Las Vegas - like music festivals or nationwide sporting events. It is advised to look into any upcoming events taking place when booking a trip to Las Vegas, as they may not be internationally known but could drastically affect your trip.
The Best Time of Year to Visit Las Vegas
Las Vegas might appear tropical with palm trees lining the Strip and crystal pools at every resort, but the city actually experiences a wide range of temperatures and weather conditions. If you plan to visit in the summer, you must be prepared for temperatures of up to 48 degrees C and powerful sun during the day with very little shade outside. Heat exhaustion, dehydration, and sun poisoning are the most common reasons that visitors are admitted to the local hospitals in Las Vegas during the summer. If you plan to visit in the summertime, plan to drink plenty of water and spend the majority of your trip inside the refreshing air conditioning of the casinos.
If you'd like to visit Las Vegas during the Christmas season or for New Year's Eve, expect the weather to be quite cool, especially in the evening. You will likely need warmer clothes and a jacket and leave the swimsuit at home - most of the Las Vegas Strip pools are closed from November to February.
The best times to visit Las Vegas are in the spring and autumn, but remember that hotels and airlines are aware of this and will increase their during these seasons.
Where to Stay on the Las Vegas Strip
No matter what your budget is, you can find the perfect hotel for your group or family to stay in Las Vegas. Here are a few of our top recommendations depending on what you're looking for:
- Skylofts at MGM Grand
- Wynn Las Vegas
- Circa (in Downtown Las Vegas)
- Circus Circus - Here you'll find the Adventuredome arcade and theme park that will keep kids entertained for days!
- New York New York - home of Hershey's Chocolate World and the Big Apple Coaster
- Vdara - this resort has no casino or gambling
- Mirage - home of Sigfried and Roy's Secret Garden, a tiger and dolphin habitat
- Four Queens (in Downtown Las Vegas)
- Rio (located just off of the Strip)
Transportation on the Las Vegas Strip
If you don't have any physical limitations, the Las Vegas Strip is incredibly walkable. The casinos are packed closely together and the street is lined with bridges that allow pedestrians to cross above traffic without having to wait. If you plan to spend your holiday walking to each of your destinations, just remember to stay hydrated and minimize your time in the sun.
Taxis and rideshare services are also widely available in Las Vegas. In fact, each casino has a specific pick-up location for rideshares to minimize confusion between drivers and passengers. You can get a ride any time of day or night, and rides between casinos are usually around $10.
You can also rent a car at the Harry Reid airport if you plan to journey off of the Strip to places like Downtown Las Vegas, Red Rock Canyon, or Hoover Dam. Each casino and resort offers a parking lot to visitors with cars, but be aware that you will have to pay a daily rate for parking.
Las Vegas Trip Planning: Our Dream Itinerary
Nowhere else can you find entertainment like in Las Vegas - from top-quality shows to world-class musical acts, you can find something to do at all times of the day and night. How do you experience the most you can during your trip to Vegas? Check out our dream Las Vegas itinerary for a list of ideas to fill your time!
High Roller Observation Wheel
The High Roller observation wheel is at the end of the LINQ Promenade between the Flamingo and LINQ hotels. At 550-ft tall, the High Roller is the world's second tallest ferris wheel. You'll get a full view of the Las Vegas Strip and surrounding area from the very top - some of the cabins even contain a full bar! Book tickets in advance, especially if you want to ride at night.
One of America's most famous pieces of architecture lies just outside of Las Vegas! The Hoover Dam has provided energy to Nevada, Arizona, and California since 1936. You can reach the Hoover Dam from the Strip by car in just 45 minutes - or you can see it from the sky on a helicopter tour from Las Vegas.
The Bellagio fountains are probably one of the most famous attractions on the Strip - and it's completely free to see! The fountain shows are set to a variety of music and feature dancing streams and towering bursts of water. Check out the fountain show schedule below:
Monday - Friday: every half hour from 15:00 - 18:30, then every 15 minutes from 19:00 - midnight
Saturday & Sunday: every half hour from 12:00 - 18:30, then every 15 minutes from 19:00 - midnight
Grand Canyon Tour from Las Vegas
If you've never visited the United States before, you may not be aware that the Grand Canyon is just a short distance away from Las Vegas. In fact, you can spend an entire day at the Grand Canyon West on a helicopter tour from Las Vegas! Some tours even land on the very bottom of the West Rim, right next to the Colorado River! The West Rim is also home to the world-famous Skywalk Bridge, which you can also include into your Grand Canyon tour.
You can also travel to the Grand Canyon National Park from Las Vegas on a sightseeing airplane tour. Here you'll find the most recognizable sights of the canyon and lush forestry as far as the eye can see. Your day trip to the Grand Canyon can also include a helicopter tour over the deepest and widest rock gorges or a ground tour to various lookout points aboard an open-air Hummer vehicle.
Fremont Street Experience
"Downtown Las Vegas" is not the same as the Las Vegas Strip. In fact, Downtown Las Vegas, also known as Fremont Street, is home to the historic casinos that started this city. Here the casinos offer cheaper food and drinks, lower table limits, and a variety of shopping, street performers, on-stage live music performances, and unique activities for kids and adults!
One of the most exciting features at Fremont Street is the massive awning that covers the entire walking area. Not only does it provide much-needed shade from the vicious Las Vegas sun, it's also a giant LED screen that plays creative light shows set to music!
Fremont Street is also home to the Slotzilla Zip Line, which zooms underneath the LED light show. You can choose to fly across the bustling crowds below you at 7 stories up or even 11 stories up - a truly exhilarating experience!
Get Married in Las Vegas
Visiting Las Vegas with your true love? You can make it official during your stay! Sin City is known for its wedding chapels scattered around the Strip, many of which offer unique themes and officiants in full costume. If you want an even more memorable experience, you can even get married on a helicopter flying over the Las Vegas Strip! You'll exchange vows in the sky over the lights and sights of the casinos below you.
For the most beautiful background in the world, you can also fly to the Grand Canyon West on a luxury helicopter tour and get married on the Grand Canyon floor! You can explore Grand Canyon wedding packages and create the most incredible moment for you and your love.
Explore Red Rock Canyon
Just under a half hour's drive from the Strip, you'll find some of the most unique desert scenery in the Southwest United States. Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area offers 31 hiking trails of varying length and difficulty as well as horseback riding, camping, picnic areas, and a scenic road with stopping points for sightseeing. You can only reach Red Rock Canyon by car, and it is advised to rent a car if you plan to visit Red Rock - cell phone reception can be difficult in this remote area and rideshares or taxis may be unavailable.
There is a $20 fee to enter Red Rock Canyon, and guests can spend an entire day exploring, hiking, and taking photos. Check out the Calico Basin Trail for a unique view of the Las Vegas Strip, or head to Ice Box Canyon Trail to find a seasonal waterfall in the springtime!
Booking a Trip to Vegas is as Simple as 1, 2, 3!
International travel is always stressful. The last thing you want to do is arrive in the United States and realize that you forgot to bring or plan something vital to your holiday. Here is your official checklist of things you must do when planning a trip to Las Vegas.
- Determine in what season of the year you would like to experience Las Vegas. Be sure to pack appropriate clothing for the time to visit that you decide.
- Book a flight and hotel in advance to ensure best pricing
- Ensure that your passport is not expired and packed securely
- Tipping is still a common expectation for services workers in the United States. If you plan to pay cash, expect to tip waitstaff and bartenders up to 20% of your total bill, and casino table game operators are typically tipped after a player wins. Exchange your currency for USD at any of the airport terminals' ATM machines.
- Determine what activities your group would like to enjoy and reserve your tickets as soon as possible
Book a Papillon Helicopter Tour Today!
If you're planning a Las Vegas holiday, you have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the most incredible natural landform in the United States: the Grand Canyon. Papillon Helicopters is the world's oldest and longest-running helicopter tour operator and the premier provider of Grand Canyon experiences. Book your Grand Canyon tour from Las Vegas today and witness the most magical nature on the planet.
Locally Owned & Operated
Since 1965, Papillon has been transporting guests over the Grand Canyon and to other destinations like Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe Bend, and Bryce Canyon. We have been proudly family-owned since our first day in business, and operate out of our luxury air terminals on the Las Vegas Strip, in Boulder City NV, at the Grand Canyon National Park, the Grand Canyon West, and in Page AZ.
Over 600,000 Happy Customers Every Year
Each year, Papillon has the honor of transporting passengers from around the world to the Grand Canyon. Our helicopters and airplanes offer headset narration available in a variety of languages, so all of our international guests can enjoy the glory of the Grand Canyon. We look forward to sharing the adventure of a lifetime with you.