You are now fully prepared to travel to Las Vegas and cross the World Series of Poker off your bucket list. You could also be a hungry grinder looking for some juicy cash games to play in a high-energy setting. You could be a degenerate with ambitions. In any case, we will be able to help you get to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker without breaking the bank.
On average, the World Series of Poker (WSOP) begins towards the end of May and lasts until the middle of July. If you do not intend to return in November to participate in the Main Event final table for a prize pool of one million dollars or more, you must be wary of your bankroll. The cost of living in Vegas may soon rise. This is the podcast for you, whether you compete in tournaments or just want to make money from tourists playing cash games.
Coach Doug Hull is a resident of Las Vegas and a well-known character in the city’s poker rooms. He explains the ins and outs of chasing your dream of becoming a poker player on a tight budget in this week’s audio.
And if you’re listening to this during the broadcast, you should join our official Vegas meeting thread and sign up for the meetup so you can hang out with Red Chip instructors and community members.
Hull has constructed a hypothetical 9-day trip to Las Vegas, beginning on a Friday and ending on a Sunday, that anyone from a casual player to a professional grinder could take to receive some fantastic table time while admiring the fish stacks and landscape. Your plans and experiences may differ, but use this as a jumping-off point for a discussion of all the most important issues (and please provide any recommendations in the comments; there’s never enough Vegas insider knowledge).
The primary costs connected with attending the WSOP are as follows:
Travel Expenses to and From Vegas for the WSOP
Of course, the first question that must be answered is, “How did you get here?” Hull selects Boston as his projected point of departure. It is his old residence, and given its distance from Las Vegas, many US players consider it to be their most expensive alternative. The cost of a round-trip flight was roughly $300 when this article was published, which was approximately fifty days before the trip. According to airline ticket price surveys, the best time to buy a flight is between 30 and 90 days in advance.
The straightforward answer is no. If you stay on the strip, you can either walk or take a shuttle to any location. Although Rio is not exactly on the Strip, you should be able to find all you need there. When you need one, it’s not difficult to find a cab or an Uber ride (Hull noticed one going from the Strip to the Rio for $10). Do you need a rental car? Hull noticed that each one was sold for around $200.
Do You Need to Use a Rental Car While in Vegas?
There is one exception to this rule, and that is if you dislike walking around in the heat. The summer heat in Vegas is unbearable. You are, as you may recall, in the desert. Is it conceivable that a rental car is now beginning to look more appealing?
If you do the math and anticipate you will be moving around a lot during your trip, renting a car may be the best option. However, the price of $200 is far too cheap. We are aware that you want to buy the convertible.
What Hotel Should I Book for the Wsop?
Hull researched the cost of lodging on the Gold Coast versus Rio and discovered that it fluctuates between $100 and $170 per night. The Gold Coast is your best bet for a place that offers a handy distance. In addition to Rio, it is the only other choice for staying within walking distance of the World Series of Poker.
If you’re determined to stay at a casino like the Stratosphere on a shoestring budget, you can get super-low room rates ranging from $50 to $60 per night. However, if you don’t want to spend a lot of time walking and riding shuttles to get to the WSOP, your best bet is to phone a taxi, utilize Uber, or rent a car. If you plan on visiting Rio daily, staying in a place like this could grow tedious. Every second matters in Vegas, so make the most of it.
Hull advises that those of us who are bigger “ballers” pool our resources and rent a townhouse with our poker buddies. Even though poker has come a long way since its heyday before Black Friday, there is still a booming rental market surrounding the World Series of Poker (WSOP), as hundreds of poker clubs descend to compete in the WSOP. It’s a great way to spend your time together and split the bill, but it’s not the World Series of Poker on a shoestring, so let’s move on…
Food at the WSOP
A brief look at the menus at All American Dave’s and the nearby café reveals that the typical cost of a lunch at the Rio is between $12 and $15. This figure is predicated on the notion that you will only be eating there. If you are willing to put your financial discipline to the ultimate test, you should begin by going grocery shopping and then living out of your hotel room on day one. Consider each peanut butter and jelly sandwich you consume as a rung on a ladder you’re climbing to get a high proportion of victories.
The WSOP’s Take on Payroll Management
Remember that if you are leaving from outside the country, you will need to make the proper preparations before you leave. Hull observes one prevalent method in use: sending money via PayPal to Americans, who can then give foldable banknotes to persons from other nations. Sending money to the casino through wire transfer is a more secure method, and the casino is happy to assist with this transaction for obvious reasons.
There are some automated teller machines in Vegas that take bitcoin; if you are very tech-savvy, you can use one of these devices to withdraw cash.
Security in Las Vegas During the WSOP
Visitors from other countries or other parts of the United States may be anxious about their safety in a city that was established on gambling and immorality. You should not be concerned, travelers. At the very least, the Las Vegas Strip is one of the safest places to visit in the United States. Why?
To begin with, there is a high amount of surveillance in place. It has a strong police force that is continuously on the alert for any disturbances that could jeopardize the region’s tourism business. There is also a surveillance camera focused on almost every inch of space. You are almost always in a tourist trap, and tourist traps in the United States are frequently exposed to a high level of thorough security screening. If you go down to ancient Vegas, you might get a different story, but you’ll most likely be in a tourist trap.
A hotel room security breach is something you must avoid at all costs. A significant number are outfitted with safes (especially in Vegas, where hotels are selling the idea you might have to stash tens of thousands in casino chips or something.) Hull advises against putting your trust in the safe. Simply phone the front desk and explain to them that you accidental accidentally forgot the safe password and that you require your belongings to be removed from the safe. A substantial proportion of hotel employees are familiar with the combinations. Do you still need convincing? Take a look at this:
Hull proposes utilizing a solution like this portable lockbox for firearms as an acceptable option. You won’t have to worry about hotel personnel entering the room if you attach it to a secure object in the room.
Another crucial factor to consider is carrying cash with you. Muggings are unusual in Las Vegas, and to put yourself in danger of being victimized by one, you must first do some idiotic things. Keeping your wad on your person may even be the smartest course of action if you are awake and informed.
Hull has two further pieces of advice for those looking to get the most bang for their buck at the WSOP:
- Playing in five $300 tournaments at Planet Hollywood is the equivalent of competing in a single $1,500 World Series of Poker event. Remember, the World Series of Poker is not the only game in town.
- Drink whoring is the practice of going to a bar and playing the Jacks or Better slot machine in exchange for or against free drinks. “I know I can drink faster than I can lose in Jacks or Better,” Doug says, paraphrasing. If you want to improve your skills in this game, The Wizard of Odds is a wonderful resource to use.
- The Rio poker room floor staff can provide lunch coupons worth $10; however, it is vital to remember that these employees are human, and demands for food vouchers are coming in nonstop throughout the series. Maintain discretion and civility when asking them, and ask them at the appropriate time. They are not endless, and once discovered, there will be none left.
- The $20 trick is a frequent habit among travelers from all over the world. Essentially, you ask the hotel check-in receptionist if there are any possible upgrades to the accommodation while secretly transferring $20 to them behind their back. This works on occasion because cashiers are frequently empowered to make changes of their choosing. However, this is far from certain, and a certain amount of Jedi mind trick charisma is required for maximum effectiveness if one chooses to do so.