Should I Book My Grand Canyon Bus Tour From Las Vegas?
I think purchasing a Grand Canyon bus tour when you arrive in Vegas is a terrible idea. It's also risky. Besides, who wants to spend precious vacation time haggling with the hotel concierge for a South Rim bus package that can be bought safe and securely for $80 from the comfort of your home.
Simply put, you will save money if your RSVP bus tours at least a week before you touch down in Sin City. Tour operators post their best deals online. I've seen them slash prices by up to 35%. This is their way of rewarding savvy travelers who book ahead. See, nothing makes a tour operator happier than knowing that the trip he's running two weeks out is full.
You may be thinking to yourself, "Well, if I do a same-day booking and there's a seat, won't they give it to me at a discount in order to fill it?" No. Comes down to the psychology of the sale. The tour operator knows that you want to leave right now and that most likely you'll do anything to climb aboard the bus and make your way to Grand Canyon National Park. Thus he'll charge you a fat premium.
Don't Get Bumped!
Will you take it? Probably. Because in most cases you've probably called three bus tour companies and this is the one that said it had availability. Further, it's either today or nothing and who knows when you'll be back in Vegas for a canyon tour. I'm not trying to be difficult. I'm simply relating what I know about the tour business. Pre-booking also ensures that you get a seat on the bus. It protects you against being upgraded, fleeced, bumped, rain-checked, re-routed, or overcharged. Basically, you are untouchable. A king among men. This is one of the biggest rewards that comes with advance bookings. I don't know about you but that's a priceless feeling in my book.
I hope I've made it clear where I stand on reserving your Grand Canyon bus tour in advance. If not, please email me at grandcanyonkeith AT gmail.com and I'll be happy to help you maneuver past the hassles of booking when you get into town.
Let's get you get you set up with a rim to visit. Here's a fast breakdown where bus tours go:
This rim is just 120 miles from Las Vegas. It's a 2.5-hour bus ride, the last 10 miles of which is over a rough, dirt road. Many visitors consider driving themselves. I'm totally against it. It will cost you a small fortune to get out there once you add up all the fees. If you do drive, get an SUV, insurance, a GPS unit, cash and a full tank of gas.
West Rim bus tours use state-of-the-art motor coaches and come with powerful A/C units, tinted windows, quiet-ride suspensions, TVs, and a professional driver-guide who is skilled in handling the logistical challenges of the area. There are several tour options from which to choose. There's the basic West Rim bus and one that comes with a pass to the Grand Canyon Skywalk. If you intend to do the glass bridge, get the bundle. The West Rim also lets you combo up bus tours with helicopter rides to the bottom and boats rides on the Colorado.
The South Rim bus tour is a Las Vegas favorite and absolutely the most economical way to get to Grand Canyon National Park. Total duration is 15 hours from start to finish. I've done it and time flies. The beauty of the South Rim is without equal. There's a good chance that any picture you've seen of the canyon was taken here. Consider taking the bus and helicopter combo if you want to take your canyon experience to the next level.
Here are links to all bus tours referenced in this article
Risk-Free Bus Travel!
Should you reserve your Grand Canyon bus tour when you are in Vegas? No. Doing this will cost you more money in the long run. Equally important, you may got a seat on the day you want to go! Take away all the risk by booking at least a week in advance on the Internet. It also spares you from spending a ridiculous amount of time low-balling the poor fellow manning the tour kiosk at Caesar's Palace.
Have a Grand Day,
P.S. Not sure which tour operator to use? Go here for a comparison of Grand Canyon bus tour operators based on safety, quality and price.