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It’s easy to spend a lot of money on a Las Vegas vacation. Between expensive hotels, fancy dinners, alcohol, and gambling, the costs add up quickly. But thanks to points and miles from travel credit card rewards, we were able to save over $1,200 on our recent Las Vegas vacation. Keep reading to find out how we spent 3 nights in Las Vegas in February 2018 for less than $200 in transportation and lodging. (Of course, we spent quite a bit more on food and activities, but who has time to keep track of that kind of thing in Las Vegas?)

Airfare Savings

We booked two round-trip tickets from Burbank, California (BUR) to Las Vegas, Nevada (LAS) on Southwest Airlines using 16,982 Rapid Rewards points and a companion pass earned from the Southwest Premier credit card and the Southwest Plus credit card. That saved $541.48 which gives those points a value of 3.2 cents when used in conjunction with the companion pass. We paid the standard $22.40 in fees.

Since we live in California, we would normally drive to Las Vegas. However, we hate the traffic that backs up at the state line. It was much more comfortable to drive part of the way and then fly the rest. We actually ended up with an empty seat between us on the way back which is basically Southwest First Class.

Total Cost: $22.40

Total Savings: $541.48

Hotel Savings

We book three nights at the Vdara using 45,119 Chase Ultimate Rewards through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. Since I have the Chase Sapphire Reserve, those points had a value of 1.5 cents. We saved $676.79 which breaks down to $225.60 per night.

You can use World of Hyatt points for MGM properties in Las Vegas like Vdara, but I’ve found it usually costs more points. Vdara costs 20,000 Hyatt points per night. The MGM daily rate was $233 per night so those 20,000 Hyatt points would have only had a value of 1.2 cents. Since Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer to World of Hyatt, we always try to beat the 1.5 cents from the Chase Sapphire Reserve through the portal. We paid less Chase Ultimate Rewards for a higher redemption value at the same property.

Unfortunately, Vdara charges a $39 resort fee per night. There is also a $5.22 tax per night on that resort fee. So, we paid a total of $132 in taxes and resort fees. Read my full Vdara review here.

Total Cost: $132

Total Savings: $676.79

Airport Shuttle

We also booked a round-trip airport shuttle through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. It cost a total of 1,934 Chase Ultimate Rewards points for two people. This saved us $29.

Instead of renting a car in Las Vegas, we walked or used Uber. Since Chase Freedom was offering 5x the points on Apple Pay for the 1st quarter of 2018, we used Apple Pay for all our rides to earn more bonus points.

Total Cost: $0

Total Savings: $29

Parking Costs

Parking at the Burbank airport cost $10 per day in Economy Lot A. So, we paid $40 for parking over the long weekend. Unfortunately, the parking charges did not code as travel for Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Total Cost: $40

The Math

Costs

Airfare Taxes and Fees $22.40
Hotel Taxes and Resort Fees $132
Parking $40
Total Costs: $194.40

Savings

Airfare Savings $541.48
Hotel Savings $676.79
Airport Shuttle Savings $29
Total Savings: $1247.27

Final Thoughts on our Las Vegas Vacation Savings

The great thing about (nearly) free travel with points and miles is that it frees up your cash for more fun. Nobody likes paying for airfare or hotels, but everyone loves getting those things for free. We were able to have a fantastic toddler free weekend in Las Vegas and save over $1,200 at the same time. That’s a win-win in my book. For your next trip, check out these 10 Chill Things to Do in Las Vegas Nevada. And make sure to check out the Las Vegas Explorer Pass which can save you even more on your next Las Vegas vacation.

How We Saved $1,200 on a Las Vegas vacation flying Southwest Airlines and staying at Vdara on the Strip with travel credit card rewards. #lasvegas #vdara #southwestairlines #southwestcompanionpass #freetravel