The Surprise Las Vegas Trip Report

Hi Guys!  So I decided to go to Vegas and not tell anyone.  I figured I could handle acknowledging maybe three people doing a smug “I told you so” about me not going back.  I will also let you know I have already acknowledged four of these comments.  So if you must, feel free.  But I am going to ignore you.

I had some vacation time booked from work.  I was going to go somewhere.  I booked flights to and from Vegas.  Then I got buyer’s remorse and cancelled them within 24 hours.

I kept watching the rates and eventually, booked again.  Then came time to book my rooms.

It started with Boyd being a dick.  If you are a Boyd player, you already know the deal.  If you are not a Boyd player, then let me summarize it for you.  Boyd completely stopped their offers for a tiny bit.  Looking back, we now all know they were just adjusting their comp system so your comped nights could be used at all properties, rather than separate offers for separate properties.  But at the time, we did not know this because there was no communication.  I did however, have my Sapphire reward which is three free nights, immediately after making Sapphire.

My Sapphire reward was good at any Boyd property.  My choices for other nights were to stay at Orleans or pay for a room.  I decided I was never going to stay at Orleans again.  I love that hotel and casino but honestly, I never leave it when I am there. It does not matter what my plans are, I can never leave.  I just sit for hours and go degenerate.  Sometimes I try to leave.  Sometimes I even make it outside.  But when I start walking to the bus stop, I get so annoyed at the lengths it takes to get anywhere that I go back inside.

(Yes, I am aware of the free shuttle, which goes nowhere I would want to go.)

So I decided to book and pay for Four Queens on Hotwire.  You can pick out which one is Four Queen because it is the only three star hotel without a resort fee.  It is usually around $30, which makes it cheaper than paying a resort fee on a comped Strip hotel.

The last two nights were at the Mirage, from a MyVegas reward.  I had to pay the resort fee, but it evens out because by staying at an MLife property, I was able to use rewards that you can only use when staying at an MLife property.  Which means I got to use two rewards for the Bellagio buffet and $25 free play.

I get six rewards because degenerate.  So I booked a bunch of crap, not sure what I would exactly be using.  It ended up being brunch at Excalibur and breakfast at Mirage.  I also got a free candy bar from Hexx.

I really liked having a short and secret trip booked.  There wasn’t the build up, the insane time spent making an itinerary.  It felt light and care free.

I was armed with my American Casino Guide, but had issues getting my Member Rewards Book from Las Vegas Advisor.  They mailed it to me twice, and the post office ate it twice.  I did not expect them to keep sending me books.  But at the same time, I wanted my book.  I knew I could go pick it up, but I don’t drive and wasn’t really into taking the bus there from Downtown.  Luckily for me, they offered to have it dropped off at my hotel.  This company gets a ton of shit for their lack of customer service, but I have to say that they truly went above and beyond for me and I am so grateful.

I booked a flight that left NYC a bit earlier than normal so I arrived a little bit earlier than normal.  This seemed fair since my trip was going to be really short (for me.)  I actually got to see daylight outside the plane window.

view of daylight from flight to las vegas

view from plane window flight to vegasview from flight to las vegas

I landed in the JetBlue terminal, which McCarran likes to call the International Terminal without any consideration for people flying JetBlue who do not know they are now in the International Terminal since why would they be if they are not flying international?  I did not know where to catch the WAX bus here.  The signage was the opposite of helpful. So I took the shuttle that goes between terminals.  As I was getting off the shuttle at the OG terminal, the WAX bus was pulling in.  Wahoo!

As the bus is about to reach Bonneville Transit Center, I remember that I had downloaded “Luck Be A Lady Tonight” to my MP3 player, to bring me luck in Las Vegas.   I quickly put it on, in hopes that I can get through one full play before reaching my hotel.  I did, which was somehow the first time I had ever heard this song in it’s entirety?   It is supposed to be a light, fun song.  Yet somehow I got mad at it, like who the fuck are you to tell me what a lady does and does not do? Yes, there is something wrong with me.

I get off the bus and check into Four Queens.  I let the woman checking me in know that I would like a smoking room, but if she does not have one, that is totally fine.  When you book through Hotwire, they automatically add your preference as non smoking.  The last time i was here, you may remember I begged and begged for a smoking room, I will take your worst room ever, please.  And they gave me their worst room ever.  This time though, I am only going to be in my room for a few hours so I can live with whatever they give me.

She lets me know she does have a smoking room. YAY.  She hands me my keys and my Las Vegas Advisor that was dropped off.   I go to my room.  I unlock the door and inside is a suite.   SWEET!

four queens las vegas suitefour queens las vegas suite roomfour queens las vegas suite bathroomfou queens las vegas suite makeup areafour queens las vegas suite shower

Of course this is completely wasted on me because GAMBLOR, but it was still pretty cool.

I went outside and crossed the street to Binions.  My plan for this trip was to establish myself at both Binions and Four Queens.  Both properties share an owner, with only Four Queens having hotel rooms. I figured one full day of play at each may get me on their radar.  I have danced on their radar before, but fell completely off it. I’d like to try again.

At Binions, i had $10 free play from my Member Rewards book.  Turned that into $100 on Keno. This would be a very nice first night cash out, go to bed and still have a full budget with an additional $100.  But you know, the whole thing where I planned to give Binions a full play day?  That gave me the green light to lose that hundred, plus a full day’s budget, so I could hopefully get on the radar for a comped $30/night hotel.  Because obviously.

I played around for three hours.  I was up and down and up and down.  This was my biggest up:

dollar jacks binions

Binions has a Motherlode promotion.  You get to swipe up to three times a day.  At 5 points, 40 points and 300 points.   I got three swipes.  The first was for a free gift, that I didn’t even bother asking what it was.  The second was for $10 off their cafe.  This is an excellent prize.  The third was for $50 free slot play.  That was incredibly exciting for me.   I played it on a Buffalo slot machine and lost.  And kept going and lost some more.

I grabbed french fries and a coke from McDonalds and was in my room by midnight.  That was when I realized I did not remember to use my American Casino Guide for double points at Binions, up to 500.  I was not going back out to do that.  So sleep it was.

I ended my first night down $100.  Yes, even with the two big wins.  Because possible comps on a $30/night hotel.  Because degenerate.  I didn’t check my little cheat sheet or else I would have stopped earlier.  200 points gets you a buy one, get one offer.  500 points gets you a full comp. I did 400 points.  Great job.  Idiot.

20 thoughts on “The Surprise Las Vegas Trip Report

  1. Nancy

    So happy you did another LV trip – and such a surprise, keeping it secret!! Its like a special treat to read!! :)

  2. Sheila A Stuart

    I smiled reading your blog. I love, no adore that you are a degenerate. Me 2! I have taken solo trips before and didn’t tell anyone; especially at the Hilton. One time it bit me in the ass. My boss called and asked if I could come into the hotel asap. She said she realized That I was on pto but since I didn’t ‘go anywhere’, it would be to my benefit to come in. Time to fess up. I am in Vegas. Just wanted to be alone. 😞 She proceeded to tell me I was promoted to Food & Beverage Director. Oh my. I said I was so thankful, and could see about flying home that day
    Thankfully she said, no. They could handle things till I got home. Degenerate gambler. Can understand not leaving your home base; also kicking yourself for not ‘venturing ‘ out when you keep hitting those daily envelopes
    Thanks for the great report Jennifer!!

    1. jenniferjennifer Post author

      That’s such a great story! You got a promotion while in Vegas!

      I really loved no one knowing I was going. I am pretty sure I will only sneak off again in the future. It just felt so freeeeee.

  3. GerBear18220

    Oh a surprise trip report from Vegas ….. how lucky are we ……. I am enjoying your trip so far….

  4. Jeff Sorenson

    I am flying to San Diego to pick up my son to go with me to Europe in September. After reading this post I am wondering why I didn’t book my flights through Lost Wages for a couple of days there on my way to San Diego. Well tickets are bought and so I will miss Frontiers $49 + baggage fee they are having to Las Vegas right now from my local airport.

  5. Mags

    I love how you make being a degenerate cool! I need more people like that in my life! You had me at “Boyd was being a dick”!

  6. Joanne

    Vegas is my favorite place to go when I want to be alone in a sea of people. Better yet, for nobody else to know about it. It’s where I loved to go to “smoke out loud” because people were way too judgey at home. I’m glad you shared it with us, your fans though Jennifer. Four Queens is my next Vegas hotel destination too. My short list of hotels without resort fees has become very short. Sons of bitches! Thanks a jackpot for the trip report . Looking forward to more.

    1. jenniferjennifer Post author

      I absolutely love Four Queens. If I can get them to feel the same way about me, I will stay there on every trip!

  7. Teresa

    Great surprise!

    Tell me…what is it that you love about the 4Q? No seriously want to know. Vacillating between establishing at the Plaza or ? I want to know if The Queen should be on my radar.

    1. jenniferjennifer Post author

      I love the vibe there. The rooms are iffy. They do have some renovated ones, but I have never gotten one. Until they complete the renovations, you run the risk of getting a very outdated room. So if the room matters to you, you would be taking a risk. I care more about how the place makes me so happy to step inside. It is so old school and I just love it.

  8. Ray Cathode

    Oh, Wow. I was just checking your blog for the zillionth time to see if there was anything new and was shocked to see there finally was. I haven’t read the TR yet, though. I’m saving it for the right time to properly savor it.

    Here’s a little (very little) something I wrote. My question to LVA’s QoD got answered! It was one of several questions answered in one day. It sounds like a question you might have asked.

    It’s here if the blog allows URLS to be published.

    If not, here was my question:

    “I go to buffets by myself. Pathetic, I know, but my question is which, if any, buffets will give a solitary diner 50% off his lonely eating experience on the presentation of a two-for-one coupon. Or in general, how common or uncommon is it for buffets to do this?”

    The answer in a nutshell was: Uncommon.

    1. jenniferjennifer Post author

      One thing I learned about the Stations coupons is that you have to be paying cash when using it as a half off. You cannot pay the balance in points. So basically it is costing CASH instead of comps! Still a good deal I suppose. But it could be better.

  9. Mare

    Sorry about the shorter points and the ACG coupon. Sounds like you had some fun for your money, though!

  10. Dee

    I have just recently re found your blog. Love it. Just wanted you to know that the 500 double points can be presented at any time. I was told to wait until I was heading home and they would apply it .

    1. jenniferjennifer Post author

      Thanks Dee! I just now, reading your post, realized I never used it at all this year because I forgot every time. Great job me.


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