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Las Vegas Strip Casinos Make a Change You Won't Like

TheStreet 3/28/2023 Daniel Kline

Strip casino operators have a lot of ways to take your money, but this one feels like a kick in the teeth and it has slowly become common.

The Las Vegas Strip's casino operators have a lot of ways to take your money. Gambling might be fun, and some people do win, but in the end, the house has an advantage and you're going to lose.

Even if you manage to avoid the call of the gaming tables, slot machines, and sportsbooks that do the Las Vegas Strip, Caesars Entertainment (CZR) - Get Free Report, MGM Resorts International (MGM) - Get Free Report, and the other Strip operators have lots of ways to take your money. That includes high-end dining, world-class entertainment, and any kind of shopping you might imagine.

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In all of those cases, however, the Las Vegas Strip casino operators give tourists something in exchange for their money. Even in the case of the resort fees which have come under fire from President Joe Biden, Caesars and MGM would argue that people are paying in exchange for clear benefits.   

Resort fees, they argue, cover things like WiFi, gym access, and other amenities which would cost more if sold a la carte. That may be true, but Caesars, MGM, as well as a few other Las Vegas Strip resorts have a mandatory charge on top of their resort fees. And now, one of the holdouts against this practice has changed its policy.

Image source: Robert Mora/Getty Images. © Provided by TheStreet Image source: Robert Mora/Getty Images.

Many Las Vegas Strip Resorts Charge a Parking Fee

While people don't like resort fees, at least many who have to pay them feel like they're getting something for their money. When it comes to paying for parking at a Las Vegas Strip resort/casino, well, that feels a lot like paying for the privilege to spend money.

Despite that both Caesars and MGM charge for parking at their Strip properties, and now, one of the holdouts that had been offering free parking, The Strat, appears to have changed its policy.

"A hotel reservations representative at The Strat on Monday [March 27] said parking will remain free on the first and second levels of the garage, but that fees in the upper levels will apply based on distance from the parking garage elevators and could be determined by scanning a QR code in the garage. The representative said VIP parking would be free," the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Basically, you can park for free if you want to walk a long way, but any decent parking will cost you (and prices will be higher on special occasions and busier days).

Both Caesars and MGM do waive parking charges for higher-level members of their rewards programs. 

Caesars began charging for parking on the Strip in 2017 and MGM was the first major operator to begin the practice in 2016.   

Where Can You Park for Free On the Las Vegas Strip?

Oddly, the higher-end Las Vegas Strip resorts including The Venetian and the two Wynn Resorts (WYNN) - Get Free Report properties offer free parking. In addition, Treasure Island, Palazzo, Tropicana, and Circus Circus offer free parking as well. Cosmopolitan, which is now owned by MGM, offers all hotel guests complimentary self-parking.

Caesars charges $18 per day Monday through Thursday and $23 per day Friday through Sunday. The first hour is free, but after an hour, you are charged for a full day. For periods longer than 24 hours, people are charged fractionally for any non-full days. The Las Vegas Strip operator also offers valet parking for $36 a day Monday through Wednesday and $40 a day Thursday through Monday.

MGM Resorts, aside from Cosmopolitan, offer the first hour free and then charges $15 for four hours Monday-Thursday, and $20 for up to four hours Friday-Sunday. Over 4 hours incurs a full-day $18 charge on weekdays and $23 on weekends. If you go over 24 hours, you will be charged for a full second day.     

Valet parking at MGM properties on the Las Vegas Strip costs $35 a day Monday through Thursday and $40 a day Friday through Sunday.

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