As We See It

An update on Strip parking

Do I still have to tip the valet? The ethical answer is yes.

MGM Resorts ruffled feathers in January when it announced a new paid-parking system on the Strip, but executives didn’t expect such intense backlash from Vegas residents. So while the new fee structure for out-of-towners goes into effect beginning June 6, locals’ rates are postponed until December 29—which raises a whole new slew of questions.

How much will it cost? Anyone stopping by an MGM Resorts property for under an hour can self-park for free. The self-parking fee at Aria, Bellagio, Mandalay Bay, MGM Grand, Mirage and New York-New York is $7 for vehicles parked between 1-4 hours and $10 for vehicles parked between 4-24 hours. The self-parking fees at Excalibur, Luxor and Monte Carlo are $5 and $8 for the same time frames. Valet parking will cost $13-$18 at the former hotels (plus the Delano and Vdara) and $8-$13 at the latter (plus Circus Circus).

How do I avoid paying for parking for now? Nevada residents can scan the barcode on their driver’s licenses upon entry or exit for free self-parking at all MGM Resorts properties until December 29 (not including special events). There’s no grace period for valet, however, and cars self-parked overnight (longer than 24 hours) will pay the full parking rate.

What’s this about complimentary parking? MGM M life loyalty program members who achieve Pearl-tier status and higher can self-park at no charge (including special events). Gold, Platinum and Noir levels receive free valet parking.

Do I still have to tip the valet? The ethical answer is yes. With these new fees, lots of folks will probably want to forego tipping the valet runner. In that case, you should probably self-park.

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Leslie Ventura is a staff writer at Las Vegas Weekly and Industry Weekly. She’s picked the brains of rock stars ...

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