Fancy a flutter in America but don’t know where to go? Las Vegas and Atlantic City are arguably two of the best gambling meccas in the USA and even the world.
Despite the fact that Vegas is located in the west of the USA and Atlantic City on the east, these two cities are always trying to compete against each other.
Financially, Las Vegas beats Atlantic City, although the latter saw a positive increase in revenue over the past couple of years.
But with both cities offering a wide variety of bars, licensed casinos, hotels and attractions, it’s no wonder why gamblers and tourists alike struggle to pick between the two.
So where should you roll the dice? To help make your decision a little easier, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide for you to digest.
Often popularised and celebrated in Hollywood films like The Hangover and Rain Man, Las Vegas has all the bright lights to attract gambling newcomers and professionals. But on the east side of the USA, Atlantic City has some rather notable unique selling points too.
Here’s a breakdown on all the key elements you need to consider.
One of the more practical reasons why you may prefer Las Vegas is the fact it has more hotels, resorts and lodges to accommodate people in.
So the chances are you might be able to find a better deal in Sin City.
However, putting up a huge amount of people does mean the main strip on South Las Vegas Boulevard can get extremely busy at times, which can be rather frustrating when you’re trying to find somewhere to eat or a table to start gambling.
One of the biggest draws in Vegas is the sheer quantity of casinos and the MGM Grand. It’s the second largest hotel in the world and has high-end dining options, swimming pools, nightlife, first-class shows and over 1,000 slot machines to accompany the many tables ready to enjoy.
On the other hand, Atlantic City is home to the Borgata, which has 2,000 rooms, 4,000 slot machines and hundreds of tables. It’s also a prime venue for the World Poker Tour.
If you want to give your feet a rest between each casino, you can catch a pedicab in Atlantic City. This is definitely a distinct advantage over the manic streets of Vegas if you’re not a fan of long frantic walks.
Atlantic City has a beach, making it ideal if you need a break from the tables and the opportunity to breathe in some natural sea air.
This also means you can get involved in various water activities and a spot of sunbathing during the day. Although it’s worth noting that in the winter months, Atlantic City does experience snowy conditions. So unless you fancy freezing to death – you might want to stay indoors!
Unfortunately, while Las Vegas has the desert heat and loads of sand, it’ll never have the same beach holiday vibe Atlantic City has.
But Sin City does have a natural wonder itself in the Grand Canyon. Situated just outside of the city, it’s an ideal day trip and excuse to go trigger happy with the camera.
If you fancy a drink or two, both cities have some swanky nightclubs and bars to enjoy. Vegas proudly boasts more options and has something for everyone, including big clubs like Drai’s, Hakkasan at MGM Grand, Light at Mandalay Bay and Tao Nightclub at The Venetian. Whereas Atlantic City offers nightclubs like HQ2, Kiss Kiss, Premier and Haven.
For families, there are lots to do in both cities as well. In Vegas, you can enjoy a Gondola Ride at the Venetian, watch the water show at the Bellagio, see your favourite celebrities at Madame Tussauds, witness dangerous predators at Shark Reef Aquarium or fill your bellies with sweet treats at M&M’S World.
While Atlantic City doesn’t have as many family attractions, you can still take your little one(s) to see Absecon Lighthouse, Lucy the Elephant or Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum.
In the evening, both cities have jaw-dropping shows to revel in. But once again, due to the sheer number of casinos and hotels, Las Vegas has a lot more on offer on a day to day basis.
The main difference between Vegas and Atlantic City depends on which kind of shopper you are.
If you love a good bargain and outlet store, Atlantic City should be at the top of your list. Try heading to Tanger Outlet or The Playground mall to curb your bargain basement shopping fix.
Las Vegas is much more high-end, so if you love a top brand, make sure you save up your money because your card could take a hammering. The Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace or Le Boulevard in the Paris hotel and casino should be your first port of call.
Coming to a conclusion on whether Vegas or Atlantic City is better, boils down to personal preference.
Both similar and vastly different in many ways, you need to consider what you want to get out of the holiday. If you’d prefer a place with more family activities, casinos, hotels and restaurants, Las Vegas might be a better option.
However, Atlantic City’s beach and the chilled coastal vibe has enough charm to keep kids, couples and individuals smiling as well.
For longer stays, Vegas might just lead the way due to the number of activities and casinos on offer, plus the potential to find a better deal.
But if you want to soak up the sun, feel some sand in between your toes and take a trip to the tables, a day out or short stay at Atlantic City is on the money.
Which city gets your vote? Let us know below.
Daryl Charman is a Las Vegas expert, bringing his Sin City knowledge to our loyal readers. Whether you need to know if your Vegas wedding is legally bound, which country has banned gambling or how to cheat the casino industry, Daryl has a wealth of knowledge in the gaming industry.
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