Should you bring your baby to Las Vegas?
One of the things we love about Las Vegas is its ability to adapt to your lifestyle. We’ve visited many times, each at a different stage in life.
If you’re looking for a kick ass party, Vegas will accommodate on a grand scale. If you’re looking to catch a live concert or show, Vegas hosts the biggest and best acts. If you’re looking to be wined and dined, Vegas has the perfect table waiting for you.
It continually impresses and outdoes itself, year after year.
But here’s the thing about Las Vegas… it’s not a great place for a baby.
I know, I know. If you don’t have kids, you’re likely saying, “No kidding! Why on earth would you WANT to bring a baby to LAS VEGAS anyways?”
Unfortunately, it’s not that simple.
Let me first give you some context.
The purpose of our visit to Las Vegas was to attend a friend’s wedding.
However, Baby Connor is still breast feeding, so we could not leave him at home (although we did leave our active toddler behind). He has never taken to a bottle, so I can’t pump or give him formula, which limits the amount of “away from baby time”.
Because Las Vegas accommodates all travel styles, we hoped to visit a few kid friendly attractions to experience the “other” side of Vegas. But here’s the thing… babies don’t care about what Vegas has to offer.
Baby Connor is not interested in aquariums or roller coasters or water parks. He doesn’t care about meeting Disney characters or playing at dizzying arcades. He just wants to eat, sleep and chew on things.
So, the game plan changed.
Instead, we decided to do what we wanted to do. Baby Connor likes his stroller and has no problem sleeping on the go, so why not just bring him along for the ride, right?
Here’s the problem with that line of thinking.
Most of what Vegas has to offer is not baby friendly. I was originally going to title this post “Is it okay to bring your baby to Las Vegas”, but that’s not exactly the message I’m trying to convey.
YES, you can absolutely bring your baby to Vegas. We saw hundreds of strollers during our visit, many with babies under 6 months old, and Vegas will adapt to your needs. That’s the lure of Las Vegas, after all.
BUT, when comparing this experience to previous visits, the question isn’t CAN you bring your baby to Vegas, the question is SHOULD you bring your baby to Vegas?
Having just experienced a trip to Vegas with an infant, and allowing myself some time to reflect, I would suggest not bringing your baby to Vegas (if possible). Put it this way, if we had an opportunity to return to Vegas with our baby, we would likely choose to either decline the trip or leave our baby at home with family.
Let me explain why.
You can’t bring babies into the casinos, so gambling is out.
You can’t bring babies to live shows because the shows are quite loud and your baby will likely disrupt other guests, so those are out.
You can’t bring babies to pool parties or night clubs, so those are out.
If you bring a baby to a fancy restaurant you will likely get evil stares from other guests and staff, and we’re not willing to drop a couple hundred dollars for an uncomfortable dining experience. So that’s not happening.
You can’t bring babies on the New York, New York roller coaster, so that’s out.
You can’t get rowdy at a sports bar with a beer in one hand and a baby in the other, so that’s out.
Shopping is quite difficult with a baby in tow, so that’s not fun.
Baby Connor’s skin is super sensitive, so we couldn’t do the hotel pool because of the chemicals and hot desert sun (but there was never any chairs available anyways, so it didn’t matter).
Are you picking up on a theme?
Sure, Vegas is stroller friendly and will accommodate young families, but Vegas is not built for babies. It’s built for adults who want to treat themselves to a little luxury and add some excitement to their vacation.
Often times, this means leaving the baby at home.
Don’t get me wrong, we had fun in Las Vegas and enjoyed spending time with our little man. However, there are much better destinations out there that are better suited for an infant.
If you plan to visit Vegas with a baby, here are a few things we learned.
The hotel we stayed at charges $35 per night to have a baby crib in the hotel room. Yes, you read that correctly. That’s an additional charge of $175 for our five night stay (we stayed at the Mirage – this may not be the case for every hotel). Knowing this ahead of time, we purchased a travel crib for this trip, but this added another piece to our luggage pile.
Most hotels charge $25 per night for a mini fridge, so it’s best to do your homework ahead of time. While I understand that hotels are trying to prevent guests from stocking up on liquids at the grocery store, it’s still an annoying and unnecessary charge, especially when families need to refrigerate baby food.
Walking the Strip is totally doable with a stroller, but the desert sun is very hot – so plan accordingly.
There is a line-up for everything, so be prepared to wait. Most of the popular restaurants fill up fast, so make reservations ahead of time, if possible.
The Freemont Experience in downtown Las Vegas is a good place to have a beer and experience the weird side of Vegas – but it gets pretty wild as the night progresses, so arrive early (you’re likely not staying out too late with a baby anyways). The covered pedestrian area puts on a light show that will keep baby entertained for hours (see above picture for evidence).
What did you think? Should you bring your baby to Las Vegas?
Share your thoughts and feedback in the comments section below. We can all learn from each others experiences.