Finding Family-Friendly Las Vegas

With a nickname like Sin City, it’s easy to overlook Las Vegas as a potential destination for a family vacation. Everyone who’s been to Vegas before has seen the scantily-clad women on billboards and taxi placards all over the city, not to mention the guys on every street corner handing out flyers with even more scantily-clad women.

Las Vegas has tried over the years to market itself as more family-friendly, which hasn’t been nearly as successful as the whole “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” campaign – which is yet another indication of the challenge of making this a good spot for a family trip.

It’s a challenge, perhaps, but it can be done – and with so many great deals on offer for Vegas pretty much year-round, it can be an easy way to take a family trip without spending a fortune. Here are a few reasons why taking a family vacation to Las Vegas is a budget-friendly and fun option:

Airfare is Cheaper

As anyone who travels with their kids knows, buying airline tickets for a family can be enough to make the budget-conscious cry. Whereas international airfare for four or more people is prohibitively expensive, however, buying tickets to Las Vegas is often a bargain. There are often special vacation packages available to Vegas as well that combine accommodation with flights, and can include activities as well.

Off-Strip Hotels are a Good Deal

The bright lights of the Las Vegas Strip are appealing to young and old alike (I recall my eyes bugging out of my head the first time I saw them at the age of 12), but the hotels that line the Strip are often too costly to consider for a family. You may find a great deal on one room, which is fine if you’re just traveling with your spouse, but getting a room big enough for the kids as well (or getting a second room) is another story. Looking at hotels off the Vegas Strip is a good way to find better deals, and that’s where many of the family friendly hotels in Vegas are, too.

Kid-Friendly Activities

As mentioned above, there are plenty of things to do in Vegas that are decidedly not family-friendly – but there are also excellent options that parents and kids will both enjoy. The area around the city offers a veritable plethora of outdoorsy activities, including hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and off-roading. In the winter months, there’s skiing in the nearby mountains. There are day trips you can take to places like the Hoover Dam. Within the city itself, there are lots of great shows that kids will love as much as their parents, and although Circus Circus isn’t exactly the place most people want to stay in the city it does offer a whole kid-friendly section full of carnival-style games. There are lots of options in Vegas for teenagers, younger kids, and their parents to keep everyone entertained.

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photo by D. Sharon Pruitt