Vegas Glitz and Glam on a Budget – Finding a Great Deal at the Bellagio

A friend and I are planning a trip to Vegas (woo hoo!). Yesterday, I spent some time searching for deals at the Cosmopolitan. Today, I’m going to see what I can come up with at the Bellagio.

Screen shot 2013-08-25 at 7.04.58 PMSince deal-hunting can sometimes be a time-consuming activity, I’m walking you through my deal-finding process to give you a few ideas for how to find a great rate of your own.

Rooms for our dates are currently pricing out at $229/night. This is more than I want to spend, so I’m going to use all of my tips and tricks to find a lower price.

• The recent partnership between Hyatt and M Life means some good things in Vegas. My Hyatt Diamond status was matched to M Life Platinum, and when I checked M Life room rates for our stay dates, I was offered a 25% discount. ($171.75 instead of $229).

Screen shot 2013-08-20 at 5.25.50 PM• Staying here would net me some Hyatt points, which I value at about 2 cents apiece (this is the average redemption value that I get from my Hyatt points). Currently, I’ve got Hyatt Diamond status. Plus, I’ve got the Hyatt Visa. So using the $171.75 rate, I would get 5 points per dollar (base earnings on the rate) plus a 30% bonus (from my status), plus 3x points on my actual spend (from my Visa), for a total of 1,633 points (860 + 258 + 515). Using my 2 cents per point valuation, this is worth about $30.

• My M Life status would net me some other perks such as priority reservations and the ability to cut the cab line…which would be nice, but not essential, and not worth any real cash savings to me.

• Another option would be to book this room through American Express Fine Hotels and Resorts (FHR) program. Since the Bellagio is a luxury property, it is an FHR hotel. FHR is a benefit of the Amex Platinum card which offers several valuable perks with each stay. (Note: the Amex Platinum card has a hefty annual fee of – gulp! – $450, but if you wait for a large signup bonus offer of 75K or 100K Membership Rewards points, all of the card’s included benefits plus the signup bonus points create a situation where the card more than pays for itself).

Through the FHR program, rooms are typically priced comparably to what you can find on the hotel’s own website. Indeed, I checked for my example date and the price was exactly the same ($229). However, additional benefits include:

Screen shot 2013-08-20 at 2.25.34 PM• This means that using the FHR program, we would get an added value of at least $130 (the special amenity plus breakfast).

How Low Can Our Rate Go?

If we booked through M Life, our rate would be $171.75, plus $30 worth of Hyatt points. So I’m going to call that $140.

If we booked through Amex FHR, our rate would be $229, plus a $130 credit. In other words, $99.

Both of those rates sound good to me. However, I am going to wait until we get closer to the date before I lock anything in. I set up a search on tripBAM and so I’ll know if the price drops…and if it does, I’ll pounce.

Vegas, baby!


  1. says:

    You get Hyatt points and stay credits even with FHR, so you should consider that in your calculations.

    Also, there’s no reason not to book the Bellagio now and lock in a rate. FHR will match rate drops and you can cancel without penalty up to around 48-72 hours before arrival. It’s a common strategy in Vegas to book a good rate with one or more hotels and then monitor rates. You can always call to get a better rate, and cancel reservations you don’t need. This mitigates the risk of rates going up. The only disadvantage is that they usually charge you the first night when you reserve, and you don’t get that back until you cancel.

    • Points Pixie says:

      Hi Louie – Good details, thanks. Agree that the Hyatt points and stay credits will come in handy. They would be especially helpful to meet a Diamond challenge.

  2. Congrats on going to Vegas! You’re going to have a great time. Are you familiar with this?

    • Points Pixie says:

      Zoe – Thanks! Yes, I have heard about the $20 trick. I was going to write about it because I’m a little scared to try it…but I might, for blog research purposes 😉

  3. Oh I love the Bellagio! I’ve put on a number of events there at that hotel, really enjoyed it. I vaguely recall being impressed with the room amenities but I don’t remember now why.

  4. Points Pixie says:

    Rebecca – If I stay there, I will write about the amenities and then perhaps you will remember.

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