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This is a blog that hopes to help with the confusion of bus riding in Vegas. Comments are encouraged. Spam is not encouraged. Comments that include websites will not be published. Allow time for moderation of all comments.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Classic newbie question and responses

Originally Posted by Vincev33 View Post
I originally rented a car for our 3 night stay in December. I see that you can buy a 3 day pass for the RTC busses for like $20. Has anyone done this? Is it convenient? Looks like it stops everywhere and can save me like $150!!! Thoughts??
Yes, many of us here are veteran bus riders.

Once all the bus changes settle, perhaps I'll start this blog up for real again.
However, since you seem to be just discovering the bus, some of the more recent posts should be helpful. The oldest posts refer to routes that may have changed or been eliminated, but they might still give you ideas to follow up.
Just pay attention to the dates of the posts and also the dates of the threads here on this board that a post might direct you too. There are long discussions of buses here.

The place to get the latest, definitive information on buses (except for senior fare issues) is here

Probably the best tool on the site is the route planner on the left. You can being up detailed plans from one place to another and it will tell you how to do, the time it should take, and how many stops. This is current information.

Printing out the bus schedules from that sections for routes you might like to take is helpful as well. Some very fine and uncrowded buses only run at certain times an hour apart. So you can plan when to leave the gambling table.

My favorite route is the 202 along Flamingo. I think of Flamingo as my strip.
If you connect up that bus with the free shuttles at Bill's or Gold Coast, you have quite a network of casinos.
Late night/early morning bus rides mean waiting at a bus stop and wondering who will pass. The Flamingo, going back to Tuscany, Terribles, or Eastside Cannery puts you right where you would park if you had a car. Sam's Town is not a bad drop either. I would not hesitate coming back to the strip from Eastside Cannery at any hour. The 202 bus just sits there at the end of the route.

In Nevada in 2009 deaths in cars compared to deaths on buses were 47 to 1.
So that is added benefit. It is much safer.
Also, you can't drink and then drive, but you can drink and then ride.(no drinking on the bus)
To your $150 savings add the value of the free drinks you can now enjoy without worries. That value itself may be equal to the car rental savings.

Whenever possible substitute something for the Deuce. SDX
is a good choice. There are also two other ways to access the strip from downtown: The Centennial Express and the already mentioned WAX.

The newest buses are two just opened on Boulder Highway. This month there are free days (but only for locals). This bus makes all the casinos along the Boulder Strip and even downtown Henderson accessible and cuts in half the ride from downtown to Arizona charlie's, Boulder Station, Sam's Town, Eastside Cannery, Joker's Wild.

The downsides against buses:

They are not always as quick as cabs and of course don't give you flexibility as does car renting. However, I might rent just one day to go to Red Rock. You reduce enormously your possibility of accident if you use the rental far away from the tourists, drunks, cabbies making lights, and locals angry at all of them.
For one thing, most fatalities in buses are when the victim of the accident is stopped at a light and rear ended. Note that there is really not too much to do to protect against that except to reduce the number of lights in your journey.

During hot weather, the waits outside can be restrictive.

And for some people, being mixed in with lower economic classes and working people is uncomfortable. For me, that is part of the treat, as I almost always end up with some good stories on the buses off the strip. Often the length of a ride is well paid for by information I gather or people I meet.

For full discussion and more detailed responses, see this thread:

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