December in Las Vegas is a cheapskate’s dream
This whole site – Price of Travel – is a guide to help people get the most value for their travel budget, and one of the most interesting contrasts anywhere in the world is what happens during December in the city of Las Vegas. It's one of the very few places anywhere where the least crowded and cheapest day of the year falls fewer than 3 weeks before what is by far the busiest and most expensive.
In spite of its desert location, it actually gets quite cool in December in Las Vegas so forget about sitting by the pool. The weeks leading up to Christmas are also when nearly everyone is home doing Christmas shopping so Las Vegas is nearly a ghost town during this period every year, particularly on weekdays.
And of course, as a party city, Las Vegas is incredibly popular on New Year's Eve every year, but this year in particular it will be even busier because December 31 is a Saturday night.
December hotels in Las Vegas at astonishing prices
For the ultra-cheapskate the draw to Las Vegas before Christmas should be incredibly strong. Where else in the United States (outside of Nevada) could you get a well-located 3-star hotel for $12 a night? You can stay at a rather nice 3-star hotel at the edge of the Fremont Experience in Downtown Las Vegas for $18 a night at the Plaza Hotel and Casino.
If you go to Las Vegas in the first half of December you can also eat at any restaurant without standing in a long queue, and attend nearly any show with discount tickets easily available. If you like big crowds then this might feel spooky, but if you dislike Vegas because of the crowds this will be a dream come true.
Every one of the hotels on the list below are rated at 3 stars or above, with many toward the bottom being 4 stars, and a few even at 5 stars.
Below you'll see a list of hotels currently available on December 13 for the left price and the best quoted price for December 31 to its right. Several of them are literally 10 to 15 times as expensive on New Year's Eve, and the rest at at least 5 times more expensive. The point is, if you ever want a super-cheap Vegas vacation where you can stay in a kick-ass hotel for next to nothing, then plan for early December, especially on week days.
13Dec/31Dec – Hotel name
$12/$112 – Fiesta Rancho Station Casino Hotel
$15/$237 – Hooters Casino Hotel
$18/$127 – Palace Station Hotel and Casino
$18/$127 – Plaza Hotel and Casino
$24/$184 – Circus Circus Hotel & Casino
$25/$272 – Imperial Palace Hotel-Casino
$25/$239 – Riviera Hotel And Casino
$29/$254 – Stratosphere Tower – Casino and Resort
$32/$194 – Excalibur Hotel Casino
$35/$280 – Flamingo Las Vegas
$35/$350 – Harrahs Las Vegas
$36/$359 – Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino
$38/$255 – Luxor Hotel and Casino
$42/$214 – Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino
$45/$253 – Bally's Las Vegas
$46/$246 – Monte Carlo Resort and Casino
$50/$328 – New York New York Hotel & Casino
$51/$295 – The Palms Casino Resort
$54/$419 – Hard Rock Hotel and Casino
$55/$345 – MGM Grand Hotel and Casino
$56/$310 – Tropicana Las Vegas
$58/$326 – Treasure Island Hotel & Casino
$60/$307 – Mirage Resort & Casino
$65/$410 – THEhotel at Mandalay Bay (5 stars)
$65/$325 – Mandalay Bay
$90/$448 – Paris Las Vegas
$97/$360 – Trump International Hotel Las Vegas (5 stars)
$99/$305 – Vdara Hotel and Spa (5 stars)