A First-Timer in Vegas- Part 1 of 2
As mentioned before, I will report on other unique travel destinations as they come up and Las Vegas, NV certainly qualifies.
This desert town gets quite chilly at night.. the crisp, dry night air reminded me of Alaska. I’m glad I had hung onto my funky leather jacket. During the day, it was in the high 50′sF. Very comfortable, but still 20 degrees off my beloved Puerto Rico.
We were there to check out
Affiliate Summit West.
A convention dedicated to Web site developers looking to generate income from their efforts. Hence my interest. It unfortunately coincided with the CES (Consumer Electronics Show) so Vegas was very crowded. No, I did not get a chance to see the CES. That would have been fun, but time did not allow it. ASW was great and I finally met a few of the ‘movers and shakers’ in the Affiliate community. The main event was hosted at the Wynn. A huge, beautiful hotel/casino with upscale clientele which was way out of our budget.
Las Vegas on the Cheap
We opted to stay at the Best Western Motel (on Main), just off the Strip, located not too far from the Fremont Street Experience (in the downtown area). We saved so much on our room, that we could afford to rent a car and we’re glad we did. The room and car combined, was cheaper than staying at the Wynn. Some of the reviews we read regarding the Best Western were not kind. Yes, it’s not on the Strip and yes, it’s in a somewhat dumpy part of town. That’s WHY it’s so cheap.
The Best Western also has their own restaurant and bar. The restaurant is open 7AM to 11PM, the bar is open 24/7. The food was very good and also very reasonably priced. So much so, that local cops and construction workers eat there all the time. Cop cars in the parking lot is always a good sign. Service was fast and courteous. We ate a breakfast, lunch and a dinner there. Our motel had FREE wifi Internet and a coffee maker. We badly need our morning coffee, but I suggest using bottled water as the tap water has way too much chlorine in it. Ice, snacks and a small laundry room were in the same building. Some rooms have a mini-fridge, ours did not. There is also a nice pool full of crystal clear water, if you can handle 45F temps! The stay was not without issues however. The motel rates only 4 skulls because of intermittent hot water, but 5 for cost. The restaurant and bar rates 5 skulls as far as I’m concerned.
Some Web sites recommend skipping a car rental and it’s true, if you stay on the Strip, you can get around on the local bus system. It runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Though the economy of Las Vegas and Nevada has taken a major dive like the rest of the US, there were signs of recovery. Major hotel construction and city works projects were evident everywhere. I really like how the streets and freeways in Vegas are laid out. It’s very hard to get lost here. It took no time at all to find the specialty shops I was after. It looked like the majority of new freeway work was finished or near completion. This made it easy to get in and out of the Strip painlessly.
As mentioned earlier, ASW is a semi-annual event dedicated to making money on the Net. Affiliate Summit East is held in New York City during the summer so for us, the one in Las Vagas made most sense.
There were many ASW events and seminars spread over 3+ days to check out. Unfortunately, my cheap silver pass did not cover any of the seminars. Maybe next time. The ‘Meet Market’ and trade show the following day, were the main events. Both were held at the Wynn. The official head count for ASW 2011 was 4,627. That’s better than last year, including many folks from outside the US.
Upon registration, they hand you a badge pass and canvas ‘swag bag’. I scored several t-shirts, hats, pens, trivia, junk ‘n stuff. It’s important to carry biz cards too, so you can toss them into drawings for prizes. Apple’s iPads and iPods were the most popular. I was busy getting shots on the show floor and chatting with those vendors who might work well with my own Web site plans. All the big names were there- Google Affiliate Network, Buy.at, Share-A-Sale, Payoneer, AvantLink, Website Magazine, Viator, Sandals Resorts, MGM Resorts, Carousel Checks, Girly Checks and many, many more.
It’s too bad Sandals does not have a presence in Puerto Rico.
Then there were the parties..
Oh, please don’t worry about me trashing my site with a bunch of ads.
Any ads or links will be kept to a minimum.
This site is still a labor of love. My gift to Puerto Ricans, everywhere.
To be Continued…
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