What happens in Las
Vegas stays in Las Vegas. Weve seen the ads, which must be working
since the city is bustling with growth. But what do travel agents
think about the destination? Travel Weekly polled some 1,200
readers to find out.
Agents said Mexico
(55%), Orlando (51%), and Hawaii (45%) are more popular
destinations than Las Vegas among clients.
They said Las Vegas
biggest drawbacks are the perceptions that it is an inappropriate
family destination (56%) or a gambling-only destination
One agent said, It
is a destination that is important to a certain segment of our
clients. We are having trouble selling it as a family vacation,
especially with all the television programs that entice the
My clients impressions of
Las Vegas have decreased since the commercials for Las Vegas have
become more sleazy, said another agent. For example, the wake-up
call commercial, where the guy does not know where he is spending
the night, implies one-night stands. When I suggest Vegas, I have
at times been shot down because of these commercials with the
response that Vegas is too sleazy and approaching
percent said Vegas bookings in 2004 are tracking the same as in
2003; 60% said they expect them to remain the same in 2005. The
best booking opportunity for Vegas is as a gambling vacation (77%).
Romance/weddings/honeymoons (50%) also presents an
Not long ago,
marketers abandoned the family-vacation positioning in favor of a
naughtier image. So will Vegas gamble pay off? Business appears to
be good, but for how long is hard to tell.
One agent said Las
Vegas has become too pricey.
used to be viewed as a value vacation
with good hotels; inexpensive, great food; and a variety of
entertainment, the agent said.
We now see the
difference in hotel prices, and its no longer the deal it once was.
People are getting sticker shock when we price Las Vegas, and they
decide that for a little more they can do an all-inclusive in
Cancun or take a three-day cruise.