Las Vegas has its rush hours, but these are most evident at times of shift changes: midnight, 8AM and 4PM. Certain streets are a problem: most pointedly, Las Vegas Boulevard, unless the point is to cruise through it at 5 mph watching the neon and the continual show flowing past on the sidewalks: Strip-walkers, fanny brigades, fried-out families, wedding parties and babbling bachelorette parties all doing it up in Vegas. If your method of Las Vegas transportation is a car, be careful not to get lost as you navigate the Strip and surrounding areas. Useful bypass routes include Koval Lane, which runs north to south, parallel to Las Vegas Boulevard starting at Sahara Avenue. Dean Martin Drive starts at Southern Highlands Pkwy south of the Strip and just west of the I-15, easily accessible from most exits off the freeway. It becomes Industrial Road at Spring Mountain Road and continues to trace the Strip on the east side going north toward Charleston Boulevard. Desert Inn is an important east-west bypass artery that runs from Paradise Road to Arville Street skipping the density of the Strip. The I-15 freeway offers ramps onto Las Vegas Boulevard at Mandalay Bay, Tropicana, Flamingo, Spring Mountain, Sahara, Charleston and Downtown, where it meets Highway 95.
Rental cars run around $30 a day and can be picked up in a central rental car facility near the airport. And as for parking, it is nearly always free, whether self or valet and there is always plenty of it.
The four-mile Las Vegas Monorail traverses the Strip’s east side behind the resorts (hardly a sightseeing tour); the entire trip takes 15 minutes in safe, air conditioned comfort that does afford some views—the Flamingo Pool, for one. The route runs from the MGM Grand to the Sahara, stopping at Bally's/Paris, Flamingo, Harrah's/Imperial Palace, Convention Center, and Las Vegas Hilton and operates 7AM-2AM (until 3AM Friday-Sunday). Pricey one-way fares cost $5, but an unlimited day pass goes for $12, a good idea if you plan to use Las Vegas transportation throughout your daily excursions. The station platforms, however, are located in the back of the hotel properties they service and require a good half-mile of hoofing from the Strip sidewalk.
Free people movers also roll between neighboring sister casinos, often deceptively farther apart than they appear. One tram connects Mandalay Bay with Luxor and Excalibur. Trams run between The Mirage and Treasure Island, and between the Sahara and MGM Grand. Another shuttle connects the Monte Carlo and Bellagio with new CityCenter’s glitzy shops, eateries, and hotels. All have indoor or covered waiting areas, often equipped with cooling misters.
Useful information about the Monorail:
You can purchase tickets online or at on site vending machines
Both Rio and Sam’s Town hotels and casinos offer free shuttles from the Harrah’s stop on the Monorail line.
Look for discount coupons on the monorail web site and discount monorail promotions in free city publications.