I have visited Las Vegas 15 times since 2005, and each time I have rented a car at the airport upon arrival. Although I drink occasionally, I am always mindful if the car is parked or if I have to drive later, so driving in an altered state doesn’t come into play for me. Side note: conversely, if you are a big drinker, a rental car is likely not a wise option for you. Also, idiots should stay off of the roads and sidewalks, but since idiots don’t read my column, this will not apply to any of you.
I enjoy the freedom of renting a car.
Certainly for the trips with the poker buddies, where we’re always moving from one game to the other, but also for trips with my beautiful bride. We choose not to have a bankroll sufficient to staring at a slot machine for 60 hours of a 72-hour trip, so having transportation at the valet’s fingertips is always automatic for me.
However, for whatever reason, once I arrive at the McCarran Rent-A-Car Center, I would always schlep over to the company of my reservation and wait in line (or fumble with the kiosk). Not only was this almost always frustrating, but it was also a waste of valuable Vegas Time.
When my wife and I went to Las Vegas for the Super Bowl this past February (and what a whirlwind that was) I decided to “check in” with Alamo from home before we left. Going through the process from my recliner while watching a Vegas film offering (you can never go wrong with a DVD of the Sinatra version of Oceans 11) seemed too good to be true. I mean, it didn’t seem right not to have anyone hassling me for the insurance options.
When we arrived at the car rental center, even though I had all of the bar coded paperwork with me, I was sure there would be some hassle. But there was none. We walked off the shuttle bus, past all of the counters with the poor saps waiting in line, met the attendant that looked at our form and pointed to the correct row of cars. We got a red one (because as we all know, red ones get better parking spots), drove to the checkout booth, then VOILA! Vegas!
Armed with confidence this time around, I was able to impress my friends. They kept wondering why were walking past the 6-person deep Alamo line.
[Images: Michael James, Creative Alliance]