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>Nearly every time I go to Las Vegas, I go to see a Cirque show, but since the Criss Angel show was postponed due to technical difficulties, I did not have any show tickets upon my arrival. It’s good to know that Tix4tonight exists at five locations all over the city. You can go in and peruse the flyers or talk to one of their knowledgeable staff about a show that would be to your taste. For last minute or first time show goers, this is a great place to start; you can see the stage version of Mammma Mia or see a classic showgirl performance like X Burlesque for 50% off the list prices. Be sure to print out their coupon for even more savings.

I learned by visitng their Fashion Show Mall location that they even offer dinner discounts with entrees at 50% off; some are for buffets, but others are for full service restaurants like Ah Sin at the Paris, so you can sit outside and watch the beautiful fountains of Bellagio (my favorite thing to see in Las Vegas-go at 8pm for the Bocelli song) while enjoying your (mediocre) meal (do NOT order the sushi, the cooked entrees, like the tempura, are much better); think of the discount price of the meal as payment for a seat to the best free show in Vegas.

Somethings are worth paying full price for (see tomorrow’s post), but sometimes all it costs is time: if you can stand the wait at Paris’ other terrace restaurant, Mon Ami Gabi (it’s usually at least an hour wait because you can not reserve a terrace seat), the food and view of the fountains are fabulous.

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Nearly every time I go to Las Vegas, I go to see a Cirque show, but since the Criss Angel show was postponed due to technical difficulties, I did not have any show tickets upon my arrival. It’s good to know that Tix4tonight exists at five locations all over the city. You can go in and peruse the flyers or talk to one of their knowledgeable staff about a show that would be to your taste. For last minute or first time show goers, this is a great place to start; you can see the stage version of Mammma Mia or see a classic showgirl performance like X Burlesque for 50% off the list prices. Be sure to print out their coupon for even more savings.

I learned by visitng their Fashion Show Mall location that they even offer dinner discounts with entrees at 50% off; some are for buffets, but others are for full service restaurants like Ah Sin at the Paris, so you can sit outside and watch the beautiful fountains of Bellagio (my favorite thing to see in Las Vegas-go at 8pm for the Bocelli song) while enjoying your (mediocre) meal (do NOT order the sushi, the cooked entrees, like the tempura, are much better); think of the discount price of the meal as payment for a seat to the best free show in Vegas.

Somethings are worth paying full price for (see tomorrow’s post), but sometimes all it costs is time: if you can stand the wait at Paris’ other terrace restaurant, Mon Ami Gabi (it’s usually at least an hour wait because you can not reserve a terrace seat), the food and view of the fountains are fabulous.

Cirque Du Soleil has five shows in Las Vegas and they are adding another one with Criss Angel this September (see earlier post for ticket details/discount). If you haven’t seen Mystere, Zumanity or Ka yet (or want to see them again) Cirque is offering up to 35% off ticket prices through August 31, 2008! I would recommend Mystere for Cirque virgins; it is the quintessential Cirque show with technically difficult and amazing feats. For a different kind of Cirque show for adults only (over 18), go see Zumanity, performed in a smaller cabaret atmosphere with erotic overtones; my favorite act was the water ballet in a huge bowl. KA is grand spectacle with Chinese acrobats and fire; the kind of show that you would expect in Vegas. If you prefer the perfect water show, “O”, or the Beatles music show, Love (my two favorite shows), there are no discounts, but both the Mirage and the Bellagio are offering dinner and show packages for the summer. Just call them at 877-274-6958 or go online to get your tickets with the promo code “AAASummer”.

If you are going to get away to any island, how about planning a trip to Kauai, Hawaii? Wanna play golf for $7? Ok, so it’s only 9 holes, but where else can you find a price like that? The Kukuiolono Golf course is public and offers rates far below the average $150 a day to play at other courses on the island.

Maybe you prefer Maui in Hawaii. How about a free walking art tour in Maui? Just ask the concierge at the Four Seasons Resort Maui Wailea for a podcast or if you are there on Friday, sign up for the docent led tour.

If you want to FAR away and want to have your dollar go further than it does anywhere in Europe these days (who wants to pay $6 for an espresso?), how about going to Bali, Indonesia? Although there are beautiful beaches, the people of the island believe the mountains are sacred, so the heart of the island is in the center, in Ubud. This is an artists’ enclave with gold and silver smiths, working among stone and wood carvers. As one of the friendliest and most spiritual places in the world, the best way to stay is at a family run place like the Rumah Roda Homestay. For only $12 per night (yes TWELVE dollars) you get a room in this beautiful family home with garden fresh vegetable meals (from their own garden), and walking distance to a temple. The best part of staying with a family is the family itself; they will explain and include you in their daily routines and temple rituals if you would like to learn about them. To truly know a place and culture, you must meet and get to know the people, so a homestay is the best of all worlds for immersion education.

Whether you go near or far, there are always ways to save your money while expanding your experience.

>Cirque Du Soleil has five shows in Las Vegas and they are adding another one with Criss Angel this September (see earlier post for ticket details/discount). If you haven’t seen Mystere, Zumanity or Ka yet (or want to see them again) Cirque is offering up to 35% off ticket prices through August 31, 2008! I would recommend Mystere for Cirque virgins; it is the quintessential Cirque show with technically difficult and amazing feats. For a different kind of Cirque show for adults only (over 18), go see Zumanity, performed in a smaller cabaret atmosphere with erotic overtones; my favorite act was the water ballet in a huge bowl. KA is grand spectacle with Chinese acrobats and fire; the kind of show that you would expect in Vegas. If you prefer the perfect water show, “O”, or the Beatles music show, Love (my two favorite shows), there are no discounts, but both the Mirage and the Bellagio are offering dinner and show packages for the summer. Just call them at 877-274-6958 or go online to get your tickets with the promo code “AAASummer”.

If you are going to get away to any island, how about planning a trip to Kauai, Hawaii? Wanna play golf for $7? Ok, so it’s only 9 holes, but where else can you find a price like that? The Kukuiolono Golf course is public and offers rates far below the average $150 a day to play at other courses on the island.

Maybe you prefer Maui in Hawaii. How about a free walking art tour in Maui? Just ask the concierge at the Four Seasons Resort Maui Wailea for a podcast or if you are there on Friday, sign up for the docent led tour.

If you want to FAR away and want to have your dollar go further than it does anywhere in Europe these days (who wants to pay $6 for an espresso?), how about going to Bali, Indonesia? Although there are beautiful beaches, the people of the island believe the mountains are sacred, so the heart of the island is in the center, in Ubud. This is an artists’ enclave with gold and silver smiths, working among stone and wood carvers. As one of the friendliest and most spiritual places in the world, the best way to stay is at a family run place like the Rumah Roda Homestay. For only $12 per night (yes TWELVE dollars) you get a room in this beautiful family home with garden fresh vegetable meals (from their own garden), and walking distance to a temple. The best part of staying with a family is the family itself; they will explain and include you in their daily routines and temple rituals if you would like to learn about them. To truly know a place and culture, you must meet and get to know the people, so a homestay is the best of all worlds for immersion education.

Whether you go near or far, there are always ways to save your money while expanding your experience.

With so many of the airlines going bankrupt, merging, and losing any kind of competitive pricing or service features, traveling by air can be a gamble, or worse yet, a nightmare. But there are airlines which offer you a winning solution if you are willing to try another kind of airline.

Sometimes flying with a foreign airline is the best way to go somewhere, even for flights within the U.S.; Virgin America started flights within the U.S. and offers a coach class that rivals most business class seats for $500 round-trip, and first class round-trip tickets for under $1500 including the applicable taxes and fees. The infamous Richard Branson has branched out from his Virgin Atlantic venture to offer flights between East and West Coast cities while offering first class quality at prices below some coach fares. The seats all have entertainment screens so you choose what entertains you instead of the airline selecting your movie for the flight. Nice lighting touches, connectivity at your seat for your electronics, and a sense of humor (one of his planes is named after Stephen Colbert), make this airline a top choice for those who want modern conveniences and value for their flight dollars.

Want to go somewhere exotic on your flight? How about Tahiti? I have traveled to Tahiti and her islands about seven times (so far) and the last three times I have traveled with the Tahitian airline Air Tahiti Nui. It’s wonderful to be greeted with a tiare flower (frangipani) and have the island spirit embodied in the flight staff as they welcome you aboard. Remember that Tahiti is actually east of Hawaii, just further south of the equator, so if you are willing to fly to Hawaii, why not take your passport and go where there are as many visitors in a YEAR as there are in Hawai in a DAY. Who says it’s too expensive? Air Tahiti Nui has packages with air and hotel for $846. This airline also has the individual seat screens and though a bit cramped in coach, they still offer more leg room than Delta in the same class. Air Tahiti Nui also offers flight to Australia, Europe, New Zealand, and a world pass, so there really is no limit to how far you can go once you get a breath of foreign air (travel).

>With so many of the airlines going bankrupt, merging, and losing any kind of competitive pricing or service features, traveling by air can be a gamble, or worse yet, a nightmare. But there are airlines which offer you a winning solution if you are willing to try another kind of airline.

Sometimes flying with a foreign airline is the best way to go somewhere, even for flights within the U.S.; Virgin America started flights within the U.S. and offers a coach class that rivals most business class seats for $500 round-trip, and first class round-trip tickets for under $1500 including the applicable taxes and fees. The infamous Richard Branson has branched out from his Virgin Atlantic venture to offer flights between East and West Coast cities while offering first class quality at prices below some coach fares. The seats all have entertainment screens so you choose what entertains you instead of the airline selecting your movie for the flight. Nice lighting touches, connectivity at your seat for your electronics, and a sense of humor (one of his planes is named after Stephen Colbert), make this airline a top choice for those who want modern conveniences and value for their flight dollars.

Want to go somewhere exotic on your flight? How about Tahiti? I have traveled to Tahiti and her islands about seven times (so far) and the last three times I have traveled with the Tahitian airline Air Tahiti Nui. It’s wonderful to be greeted with a tiare flower (frangipani) and have the island spirit embodied in the flight staff as they welcome you aboard. Remember that Tahiti is actually east of Hawaii, just further south of the equator, so if you are willing to fly to Hawaii, why not take your passport and go where there are as many visitors in a YEAR as there are in Hawai in a DAY. Who says it’s too expensive? Air Tahiti Nui has packages with air and hotel for $846. This airline also has the individual seat screens and though a bit cramped in coach, they still offer more leg room than Delta in the same class. Air Tahiti Nui also offers flight to Australia, Europe, New Zealand, and a world pass, so there really is no limit to how far you can go once you get a breath of foreign air (travel).

Ticket brokers are like stock brokers; they are great when they get you what you want, and terrible when they promise the moon just to earn a commission. There are a few companies I’ve used which not only deliver, but deliver even MORE than what they promise.

My favorite is the travel broker is Flight Centre. I had checked for flights online and over the phone before contacting them for a quote. Not only did they get me a better itinerary, but they beat the price I got directly from the SAME AIRLINE by $50 just to earn my business! The best thing was that I was able to pick up my tickets from a branch office close to my home the next day, without having to wait for mail delivery. Their prices are especially good on all international flights and vacation packages, but try them whenever you don’t have the time or inclination to shop around for your travel arrangements.

For discounts on concerts, plays, and live events, sign up for Goldstar. The service is free and they offer last minute discounts ranging from 10-60% off on popular events like Wicked (they have a special right now for 40% off 25 select dates). I got seats at the Los Angeles Opera starring Placido Domingo for 50% off last season, so they offer something for every taste. Their newsletter gives you advance notice of events, sometimes even before public notice.

If you want (or need) the best seats possible for a reasonable price, then go with VIP Tickets. They do offer discounted seats to some venues like sports, but they are great for getting the best seat in the house if you are willing to pay a bit more for them (about double face value for the front center section). Sometimes it is worth the splurge because there is no other way to get those seats unless you know someone who works on the show. VIP will send out the tickets via messenger and they won’t charge your card until the seats are confirmed. It’s the next best thing to having your personal concierge.

Ticket brokers are like stock brokers; they are great when they get you what you want, and terrible when they promise the moon just to earn a commission. There are a few companies I’ve used which not only deliver, but deliver even MORE than what they promise.

My favorite is the travel broker is Flight Centre. I had checked for flights online and over the phone before contacting them for a quote. Not only did they get me a better itinerary, but they beat the price I got directly from the SAME AIRLINE by $50 just to earn my business! The best thing was that I was able to pick up my tickets from a branch office close to my home the next day, without having to wait for mail delivery. Their prices are especially good on all international flights and vacation packages, but try them whenever you don’t have the time or inclination to shop around for your travel arrangements.

For discounts on concerts, plays, and live events, sign up for Goldstar. The service is free and they offer last minute discounts ranging from 10-60% off on popular events like Wicked (they have a special right now for 40% off 25 select dates). I got seats at the Los Angeles Opera starring Placido Domingo for 50% off last season, so they offer something for every taste. Their newsletter gives you advance notice of events, sometimes even before public notice.

If you want (or need) the best seats possible for a reasonable price, then go with VIP Tickets. They do offer discounted seats to some venues like sports, but they are great for getting the best seat in the house if you are willing to pay a bit more for them (about double face value for the front center section). Sometimes it is worth the splurge because there is no other way to get those seats unless you know someone who works on the show. VIP will send out the tickets via messenger and they won’t charge your card until the seats are confirmed. It’s the next best thing to having your personal concierge.

>Ticket brokers are like stock brokers; they are great when they get you what you want, and terrible when they promise the moon just to earn a commission. There are a few companies I’ve used which not only deliver, but deliver even MORE than what they promise.

My favorite is the travel broker is Flight Centre. I had checked for flights online and over the phone before contacting them for a quote. Not only did they get me a better itinerary, but they beat the price I got directly from the SAME AIRLINE by $50 just to earn my business! The best thing was that I was able to pick up my tickets from a branch office close to my home the next day, without having to wait for mail delivery. Their prices are especially good on all international flights and vacation packages, but try them whenever you don’t have the time or inclination to shop around for your travel arrangements.

For discounts on concerts, plays, and live events, sign up for Goldstar. The service is free and they offer last minute discounts ranging from 10-60% off on popular events like Wicked (they have a special right now for 40% off 25 select dates). I got seats at the Los Angeles Opera starring Placido Domingo for 50% off last season, so they offer something for every taste. Their newsletter gives you advance notice of events, sometimes even before public notice.

If you want (or need) the best seats possible for a reasonable price, then go with VIP Tickets. They do offer discounted seats to some venues like sports, but they are great for getting the best seat in the house if you are willing to pay a bit more for them (about double face value for the front center section). Sometimes it is worth the splurge because there is no other way to get those seats unless you know someone who works on the show. VIP will send out the tickets via messenger and they won’t charge your card until the seats are confirmed. It’s the next best thing to having your personal concierge.

I’m a big Cirque du Soleil fan; I’ve been going to see their shows since 1988 (no, I was not a child at the time: ) and I’ve seen nearly every show that has traveled to Los Angeles or moved in to Las Vegas.

I just bought tickets for the new Cirque du Soleil show opening in September 2008 called Believe that was created with Criss Angel. This show isn’t the usual Cirque acrobatic show, it’s a show of illusions, so if you are looking for a show to take your young children, choose another Cirque show like Mystere, Love or O. The show ads warn that this show is “not for the faint of heart”.

If you join the Cirque Club you will get advance notice of all new shows as well as discounts on some performances. It’s free and they don’t spam you with emails. If you just want to go see this show and not join Cirque’s Club you can call the Luxor directly and they will sell you the preview show tickets (the performances September 1-10th) at the same 25% discounted price. Preview shows are like dress rehearsals before opening day; I think they are better just because everyone in the show is still excited about opening and the show is as fresh as it will ever be.

I got fifth row center seats for September 10th, so great seats are available as of this post, but they probably will not last. Go have fun!

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