Over the course of 4.2 glorious miles, the Strip along Las Vegas Boulevard packs 28 unique casino resorts into an oasis of gambling and gluttony.
Millions upon millions of visitors flock there every single year, and when they do, walking up and down the main drag is an essential part of the experience. You’ll see street-side buskers performing musical acts and comedy shows, adults in superhero costumes entertaining the kiddos, and vendors hawking everything from oversized cocktails to T-shirts, hats, and other tchotchkes to commemorate your trip.
Everywhere you look, walking on the Strip offers a new wonder to behold and new experiences to savor. What’s not to love about this utterly unique stretch of Americana?
Well, if you don’t pack and prepare properly, there’s plenty of problems that can plague those who visit Las Vegas. For a variety of reasons, venturing out into the wilds of The Strip without a good game plan is never a good idea.
The list below highlights six essential items to bring along whenever you’re taking a stroll down Las Vegas’ most iconic attraction.
1 – As Much Ice-Cold Water as You Can Carry
Right off the bat, first-time visitors to the Strip often find themselves struggling to cope with Las Vegas’ scorching temperatures.
As the table below shows, between April and September, visitors walking the Las Vegas Strip encounter brutal conditions that border on the unbelievable.
Las Vegas Average Temperatures by Month
|January||58° F (14° C)||34° F (1° C)|
|February||63° F (17° C)||39° F (4° C)|
|March||69° F (21° C)||44° F (7° C)|
|April||78° F (26° C)||51° F (11° C)|
|May||88° F (31° C)||60° F (16° C)|
|June||100° F (38° C)||69° F (21° C)|
|July||106° F (41° C)||74° F (23° C)|
|August||103° F (39° C)||74° F (23° C)|
|September||95° F (35° C)||66° F (19° C)|
|October||82° F (28° C)||54° F (12° C)|
|November||67° F (19° C)||43° F (6° C)|
|December||58° F (14° C)||34° F (1° C)|
And remember, those are just the ambient air temperatures. When you factor in the convection oven effect created by asphalt and concrete—not to mention people jam-packed together in a confined space—the actual temperature at surface level on the Strip can easily top 120 degrees.
Earlier this year, the National Weather Service (NWS) issued a citywide extreme heat advisory, warning people to stay indoors when possible, while monitoring themselves for symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. The latter condition can be deadly, even for healthy adults who have exhibited no prior problems before heading out into one of the hottest places in America.
With that in mind, folks who want to walk outside should definitely invest in a thermos capable of carrying at least 36 ounces of ice-cold water. In fact, grab two of these bad boys and carry them in your backpack at all times. Hydration is of utmost importance when the temperature is hitting triple digits, and no, frozen margaritas by the yard don’t count.
2 – A Portable Phone Charger
Sightseeing is what the Strip is all about, and in 2019, that means snapping as many selfies and Instagram stories as you can.
But after a few hours, you’ll probably find your phone battery drifting toward the danger zone. Trust me, there’s nothing worse than lining up that perfect shot of your family in front of the Bellagio fountains, only to find your phone has crapped out and can’t take photos.
To avoid this sorry state of affairs, I recommend carrying a portable charger capable of powering up any mobile device. You charge these suckers to full capacity overnight in your room, then stash it in your backpack or bag for safe keeping. Then, when you notice your phone is almost out of juice, simply connect the portable charger for a quick pick-me-up.
3 – At Least $200 in Cash for Spending Money
The Strip is a hub of commerce and commercial activity, so you’ll find no shortage of vendors playing their trade up and down Las Vegas Boulevard.
But many of these street-side salespeople work the old-fashioned way, with hand-to-hand cash transactions.
Those famously oversized cocktails, a ballcap reading “Viva Las Vegas,” or a hand-drawn caricature of you with your loved ones, all of these staples are typically sold on a cash-only basis.
A couple of Benjamins should be enough to get you through a daylong walk up and down the Strip, but be careful when it comes to flashing that cash…
4 – A “Dummy” Wallet to Trick Pickpockets
One might imagine that the days of sly pickpockets preying on oblivious tourists are long gone, but that’s far from the case in Las Vegas.
In fact, the scumbags who “earn” their living by stealing from strangers have made Sin City their capital for as long as drunk jackpot winners have stumbled around the Strip.
Back in 1990, local son Wayne B. Yeager wrote the definitive Bible on the subject. His book, Techniques of the Professional Pickpocket, offered concise instructions through which aspiring thieves can hone their craft.
And although the book was aimed toward pickpockets rather than their victims, Yeager did manage to offer sage advice for anyone looking to protect themselves:
“You can’t steal a man’s money as long as he has his mind on it.”
Knowing this, you should always have your mind on your money when you’re taking a lap on the Las Vegas Strip.
Carrying a “dummy” wallet in your back pocket is essential. This decoy won’t have any of your IDs, credit cards, or cash inside, so if somebody does happen to get the jump on you and lifts your wallet, they’ll still walk away empty-handed.
5 – A Map Directing You to Your Casino(s) and Attractions of Choice
The Strip can be a madhouse during peak hours, with thousands of people all struggling to do the same thing—find their way to wherever it is they’re trying to go.
And unless you’ve been here several times before, navigating the corridors, walkways, and elevated bridges that have been deliberately designed to confuse can be quite difficult indeed.
To save time and avoid the hassle of trying to find your way, just bring a map listing all of the Strip’s major sites and destinations with you on your walk.
6 – A Token of Good Luck
Whether you believe in lucky trinkets and charms is a matter of personal preference, but this is Las Vegas after all…
It can’t hurt to bring a special talisman with you when you walk the Strip, and if your next spin on one of your slot machine games does happen to trigger a sizable score, you can always thank me later.
The Las Vegas Strip is like nowhere else on planet Earth, and in more ways than one. The crowds, the casinos, and the commotion combine to create an environment unlike any other, which can be tough for rookies and regulars alike should they arrive unprepared. Armed with this list, you won’t be one of them though. Take the time to pack your backpack or bag with the essential items needed to make your walk a success!