Monday, March 23, 2015

Viva Las Vegas Advice for First-Timers and Everyone Else, Too

Last year, I went to my first Viva Las Vegas and had the time of my life. It is intense. Viva is a marathon, not a sprint, so it helps to plan ahead. I've been combing the Viva Las Vegas Facebook group for tips (I'm not a four-, nine, or even -18-year veteran like a lot of the people going!) and compiling my own so we can all have an amazing time. Please come say hi if you're there!

You already know you need outfits for day and night, and likely a third for late night. This isn't about the clothes; this is about the other really, really important stuff to get you through.

You will need:
- Band-aids and more bobby pins than you think you might need. Blisters and stray hairs happen.
- Your own bottles and a flask: If you like to drink, do it right--with more affordable, stronger drinks than what's available at the bars in the hotel. You'll also probably want to have your own bottles of water.
- Chafing cream and/or a good deodorant: Deodorant on the inner thighs is great for chafing, but if you're fancy, buy the chafing cream.
- Extra hangers. Even if you're not sharing a room with a few other ladies, you simply won't have enough hangers for all your stuff.
-Snacks. Of course, you can buy snacks once you arrive, but it can be hard to get around without a car. If you have the space in your luggage, bring it along!

Last year at the car show

Doing Stuff at Viva
- Plan before you go. I've made a Spotify playlist with a lot of the bands I'm not familiar with, so I know who I'll go see when I get there. Download the Viva app for your phone so you can easily get event reminders, but I like to actually underline things in the program.
- Join the Facebook group. That way, you can get a better idea of the events happening, especially the ones that aren't in the program, like meetups at specific bars in the Orleans.
- Get to the pool party early and don't leave for any reason. The line gets crazy long, you might not get a chair, and it's really hard to get back in.
-Stay up a little bit later each night. Viva is really, really exciting, but if you go hard all at once, you might not make it through the last night. I found that if I stayed up just a little bit later each night, I was able to function and didn't *eh hem* sleep through the last night like some of my friends did. I was on the dance floor until about 7:30 a.m. I don't think that's too shabby.

Going "off-campus"
- I highly recommend Frankie's Tiki Room, for the atmosphere, the drinks, and the collectible tiki mugs.
- The Neon Museum is incredible, and a great way to learn about Vegas history.
- Downtown Las Vegas is the old, kitschy section of the city. Not nearly as glitzy as the Strip, but there's plenty to see. I didn't make it last year but maybe I will this year.

A few other important tips from the Viva Las Vegas Facebook group (have you joined this group yet? Join this group):

"Bring something you can play a CD on (laptop or discman if those even still exist) and buy the VLV compilation disc as soon as the vendor area opens. Give the disc a listen and note bands whose tracks you really like. Helps you to prioritize which ones to see."

"Buy anyone who crossed an ocean to get to Viva a drink."

"Pack a hangover kit."


  1. Great post! I planned last year and turns out I didn't plan enough! I seriously underestimated how much is going on at once. -Trying to go to more little events this year and make more new friends! :)

  2. Great tips!! I can't wait to hit up Viva again and dance and listen to all that great music. I never thought of the Spotify idea, I'm going to do that tonight as I'm stuck on who I want to listen to (I have several lined up but there are still so many that I just don't know.).

    Another great tip, is request a fridge for your room. It's a small fee a day but its great for storing drinks, leftovers (that don't need to be heated up) etc.

    1 week!! See you there :)


    1. Oh my goodness, I completely forgot about the fridge! And my friends and I talked about that when we left Viva last year. Thanks for reminding me :)


Thanks so much for your comments!