Las Vegas is America's Playground and one of those places that many people love to visit for a long weekend. When initially looking at prices of a Las Vegas vacation, everything starts to add up fast. Thankfully there are discounts to be found everywhere, you just need to know where to look!

On a recent trip to Las Vegas, we were able to keep the total cost of a 4 day, 3 night vacation under $400 per person including airfare! The only thing that total did not include was gambling, and the amazing thing about it all was that we didn't have to sacrifice too much in the process of doing so. We stayed in nicer hotels right on The Strip including the Mirage and New York New York, went to a Cirque Du Soleil Show, visited the Hoover Dam and ate our hearts out at the buffets.

How did we do it? Here is a quick breakdown of the costs and how we managed to get great deals on about everything in Las Vegas. The most important thing is that you plan ahead, if you don't you will pay a lot more! If you want to skip the narrative and get right to the discounts, click the button below to check out our full list.

Round-trip Airfare & Ground Transportation ~ Trip Total: $200


Spirit Airlines, one of several discounted Las Vegas carriers - Joe Raedle, Getty Images

Las Vegas is a great meeting place because you can often find very cheap airfare to and from Sin City. We were able to get round trip tickets from Denver on Spirit Airlines for only $183 a person, although if you fly on the right days, tickets can be as cheap as $100. Watch ticket prices for a few weeks and make sure you book them at least a month ahead of time. Find the biggest discounts by checking the following airlines:

Tip: It’s typically cheapest to fly to Las Vegas on a Sunday, Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. You’ll want to pick a day other than Sunday or Monday for your return flight; those tend to be expensive days to fly home.

The other $17 in transportation costs were spent on bus passes to get around Las Vegas over the four days. Many people don't know this, but the city's bus system is very nice and will pick you up right at the airport terminal. From there you can get to The Strip or Downtown pretty easily and save a good amount of money. If we would have taken taxis everywhere, our cost would have been well over $100. We've got detailed instructions on where to board the bus at the airport and more in our guide to discounts.

3 Night's Stay at The Mirage & New York New York ~ Trip Total: $0

The New York New York in Las Vegas - Bruce Bennett, Getty Images

You're probably seeing $0 and thinking, "yeah right!" Thanks to MGM Resort's MyVegas facebook game, we were able to book what would have normally been over $550 in hotel rooms for free. You do have to spend some time playing their free game, but you can get some really great rewards for doing so, and it doesn't stop at free hotel rooms. We've written several articles to help get you started playing MyVegas and earning Rewards fast in our MyVegas Guide. Even if you don't play MyVegas there are still lots of discounts to be found on Las Vegas hotels.

4 Days Food & Drink ~ Trip Total: $77

Steak at Kahunaville inside of Treasure Island - Adam Porter, TSM

Saving money on your food and drinks in Las Vegas is another one of those things that is pretty easy to do if you pay attention. If you are going to Las Vegas for more than a few days, you might want to look into buying the Las Vegas Advisor's coupon book. Although you do have to pay for it, the book includes lots of food discounts including a plethora of buy one get on free buffet passes. Here are some of the other places that we found discounts in advance to significantly lower the cost of food on our vacation:

  • MyVegas ~ This MGM Resorts facebook game allows you to win buffet passes & restaurant credits
  • Tickets 4 Dinner ~ Booths along the strip that allow you to book dinner reservations at half the price
  • Destination Coupons ~ Free printable coupons for Las Vegas buffets and restaurants
  • Groupon ~ Discounted vouchers for Las Vegas buffets and restaurants
  • ~ Tons of discounted restaurant vouchers available
  • Travelzoo ~ Deals on buffets and restaurants
  • Las Vegas Leisure Guide ~ Free printable restaurant coupons
  • Coupons in Vegas ~ Free printable restaurant coupons

Tip: Buffets in Las Vegas usually change from lunch to dinner around 3 or 4 in the afternoon. Get there slightly early and you'll pay the lunch price for the dinner menu.

Shows & Entertainment ~ Trip Total: $117

The Beatles LOVE Cirque Du Soleil Show inside The Mirage - Ethan Miller, Getty Images

Our Cirque Du Soleil tickets cost only $73 each thanks to a ticket discount found on Smarter Vegas, and our Hoover Dam Bus Tour cost only $44 each thanks to Groupon. If you look long enough, you can find a discount for most things that you might want to do in Las Vegas. We will save you some time though; here are the places to look for entertainment deals. You might want to check them weekly leading up to your trip as deals on Groupon and Travelzoo in particular change frequently:

Total Trip Cost: $394 (Excluding Gambling)

There you have it, a 4 day, 3 night Las Vegas Vacation for under $395. It took some planning but it is totally doable, and you can have a great time in Las Vegas without breaking the bank. Click on the button below for the complete list of places that we found discounts and coupons to make it happen...