Many of the taxi drivers in Las Vegas are unscrupulous. This is pretty well-known, and I have generally avoided the Las Vegas taxi cab scam artists by speaking up and making it clear I am expecting the most direct route to the Strip when I get into a cab.
No scenic route through the tunnel!
But I got distracted on my latest trip to Las Vegas. I was in the back seat of the taxi, catching up with a buddy who I hadn't seen in years. We were both excited for our reunion trip and chatting for a while before we realized that we had been en route to our resort for much longer than usual.
The total fare was $37, and the driver had the nerve to ask for tip, too, as I swiped my credit card and left the tip line blank. Tip for what?! Long-hauling us? Not helping with our bags?
No, ma'am! You get no tip.
I paid a steep price, but I learned a valuable lesson that will pay off in the long run: Don't ever use a taxi in Las Vegas. Here is what I will be doing instead. I stay on the Strip on Las Vegas Boulevard, and the airport is only about two miles away from the spot where I like to spend my time when I visit Las Vegas.
It's walkable. I've always known it is, but I have never really looked into the route and logistics of it. When this particular week of fun ended in Vegas, I decided I would walk back to the airport so I could tell you about the route in case you might want to try it, too.
There are good sidewalks the entire way, so you can easily breeze along with a roller suitcase and get there in about 40 to 45 minutes depending on where you are staying.
Here is the route I took from the Marriott Grand Chateau, which is located at Las Vegas Boulevard and Harmon Avenue (right at the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino and across the street from City Center). I walked down Harmon Avenue (away from the Strip) until I got to Paradise Road. You take a right on Paradise and walk all the way to the airport. It's so easy.
Alternatively, you can walk down the Strip (Las Vegas Boulevard) to reach Tropicana Avenue, turn left and walk until you reach Paradise. Then it's a right turn and into the airport. Tropicana and Las Vegas Boulevard is the corner that is home to the Tropicana, New York New York, Excalibur and MGM Grand.
Walking to the airport from the Las Vegas Strip
A few other notes: You're going to want to make the journey in the morning or after the sun has gone down in the evening. It's probably not a good idea to walk the route in the heat of the afternoon, especially in the middle of summer. Bring a bottle of cold water or Powerade, put on your sunscreen and plan a meal break on the route if you want. You'll be surprised how easy the walk can be if you break it up and leave plenty of time to get to the airport.
You'll also get to see Vegas from a new angle and save an extra $20 to $30 (walking both ways? That's $40 to $60) to hit the buffets, grab a show or play a few more slots or hands of blackjack while you're in town.
Why not give it a try?
Thanks for reading, and always travel fit, travel happy and travel often!