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Should you book a Vegas vacation or go a la carte?

With 40 million flights arriving each year and more than 250 hotels in Las Vegas, there’s no shortage of options to plan a trip.

Sometimes all those options can be overwhelming, however. Many choose to save by booking a Vegas vacation package, where travelers book their airfare and hotel together in one transaction. To make sure you’re getting the best deal, however, compare these packaged bundles to airfare and hotel purchased separately.

As an example, I compared packages versus a-la-carte options on Travelocity, testing several major cities for vacations in early June, based on double occupancy. All options include airfare and five nights at the Sahara hotel and casino resort. The following prices are per-person:

  • Atlanta: $502 (package), $685 (flight and hotel purchased a la carte)
  • Chicago: $464 (package), $652 (a la carte)
  • Dallas: $469 (package), $667 (a la carte)
  • Los Angeles: $235 (package), $437 (a la carte)
  • New York: $483 (package), $685 (a la carte)

In these cases, I found that the packages were the better deals. In most instances, the price differences were significant, reflecting more than $100 in savings. The caveat, though, is this sample snapshot may not hold up for your own vacation. Be sure to compare both options for your travel dates to ensure the best price.

And remember, when comparing a-la-carte prices, be sure to divide the hotel room price by your number of traveling companions—you may find greater savings this way.

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