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Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

dwhizs
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Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Thought i had better start this while still fresh in my memory!

Me, my wife, sister and brother in law decided to visit Las Vegas for the 3rd time to celebrate some 30th birthdays.

A little background before i start:

We've all been to Vegas before. Once around 7 years ago, then again 4 years ago for sis & brother in laws wedding. Our main aim for this trip was to see a few things we missed before, gamble a little and drink a lot.

10 days is a lot to get through, so i'll skip a lot of the sitting around the pool/bar/hotel/casino drinking unless there are interesting bits!

I'll post as replies.

Meridian, Idaho
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1. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Anxiously waiting during a slooooow day at work for your reply! :)

dwhizs
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2. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Day 1 - Monday 22nd August

Our flight with Virgin Atlantic (booked as a package through Virgin Holidays) isn’t until 11.20am from London Gatwick, but I had arranged the minibus to pick us up at 5.30am to ensure we beat the rush hour traffic and get to the airport with time to spare.

The only time I’ll ever pay £12 for a fry-up is at the airport. It’s a great feeling to sit there, eating bacon and eggs and enjoying a pint knowing you’re on holiday. Unfortunately, Gatwick airport had other ideas and the fire alarm meant an evacuation. Seems it’s not just me who is relaxed. I’ve never seen a calmer emergency evacuation ever!

We were all moved outside of the terminal building and had to wait around 20minutes before being allowed back inside and had to go back through security. The staff in Wetherspoons were good enough to remember me and my ground and replace our half-finished beers!

Our flight left on time. Seats were not too bad. Economy, row 43 I believe. The Virgin Atlantic planes serving the Vegas route are a little old now, but the in-flight entertainment screens worked fine. Good choice of movies. Food pretty good and drinks included! I had not planned to drink during the flight, but the brother in law (BiL) is a drinker and we soon found ourselves with the 1st of many drinks.

Sitting between the galley and the rear of the plane made it fairly easy to keep getting served. As this was a Monday flight, there were no stag/hen groups on board, and the bar only ran dry 8 hours into the 10 hour flight. Our last drink was vodka and apple juice, as it was all that was left!

Time for US Security/ Immigration. This is always a nightmare. 50 minutes in a very slow queue. I blame those people who didn’t complete the ESTA and border control cards. There should be a separate, quicker queue for those who follow the rules! Still, once we got through, our bags were already waiting for us. A quick cab ride to the MGM (no tunnelling of course – at the MGM, you’re almost at the airport!) and we joined the check in lines.

Check in was busy (around 3pm), but only took 15 minutes to get our room key cards. No non-smoking King rooms available in the Grand Tower and opted not to have a West Wing room after reading reviews on here. The clerk found a queen room in the grand tower on the 23rd floor (non smoking floor) with a view of the Trop, Mandalay Bay and Excalibur. No resort fee as it was included in the package price.

The room was perfect. Two decent size queen beds (we only needed one – the other became my wife’s dressing table and where we left all the leaflets, coupons, maps etc). Decent view, nice size bathroom, old CRT tv and the wi-fi worked fine. Our in-room safe was locked, but engineers were quickly sent up to unlock.

A quick shower and change and we headed out to explore our home for the next 10 days. We didn’t get very far until the need for a beer kicked in and we found ourselves at the main casino bar. Always nice to have a base bar for the holiday. This became our meeting point for the next 10days. $20 into the video poker, $0.25 a hand resulted in a good few comped drinks each. A couple of dollars tip per drink and cashed out around $15. Not bad at all considering it’s $8 to buy a Corona anyway.

We continued to explore the hotel, but now feeling the effects of drinking all day we needed to grab a macdonalds and get some sleep. In bed by 11pm, preparing for our first full day in Las Vegas.

Coming next! Why sun bathing in 115 degree heat is not good for pasty skinned gingers from the UK and why I hope Hooters doesn’t close down.

Tampa, Florida
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3. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Looking forward to more!

Winchester, United...
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4. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Loving it so far!!!

Benbrook, Texas
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5. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Enjoying the TR. Looking forward for the remainder.

London, United...
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6. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Love this! I will be at GW in 22 days doing the exact same thing as you before the flight.

Can I check - is booze free on the plane?!

Southampton, United...
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7. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Yes, like you, the only time I pay an astronomical price for a full English breakfast is at the airport! In my mind that's when my holiday really starts!

Interesting to read the immigration queue was so long - does it always take that long?

Roll on part two ....

dwhizs
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8. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Yup, on Virgin Atlantic, the drink is included. Little cans of grolsch and vodka & coke kept me going!

430 people arriving on one flight, with the queue still half full from the previous arrival meant a very busy queue. It also takes a while for the finger prints and photograph.

Part 2 is being finished while i'm at lunch. Wish i had booked a few more days off to recover!

Wisconsin Rapids...
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9. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Nice start. Can't wait for day 2.

Thanks for taking the time to make a TR.

Orange, California
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10. Re: Las Vegas TR. 22nd Aug, 10Nights, MGM Grand

Its only a four hour drive to Vegas for me, but I always give myself one day for recovery. I cannot imagine having to go back to work right away after trans-atlantic travel. Hang in there.

Enjoying your TR and look forward to the rest.