Las Vegas Deals - How to Get a Cheap Grand Canyon Skywalk Tour
Las Vegas travelers are making the Grand Canyon Skywalk a "must-see" attraction. The glass bridge is truly phenomenal but never pay full retail price. Here's how to find best deals on Skywalk trips.
1. Take an all-inclusive tour. You have three types of tours from which to choose: Bus, helicopter, and airplane Bus is the cheapest; helicopter is the most expensive. Airplane tours are in the middle because they can fly up 17 people at once.
2. Don't buy from third parties. You will pay more if you purchase a tour from a travel agent, an online broker (e.g. Viator), or a hotel concierge. In Vegas, avoid street-side ticket vendors - thereís absolutely no guarantee what youíll end up getting.
3. Buy direct. In essence, you will be getting wholesale pricing, which is the rock-bottom price for which an operator will sell its trips.
4. Book in advance. If possible, buy your trip several months before you expect to take it. Try to avoid booking less than two weeks out. If you make next-day or same-day reservations, you will end up paying a premium.
5. Book over the Internet. Internet reservations save tour operators a lot of money. The good companies pass a significant portion of these savings to you. The sites I used to book trips are safe and secure, and Iíve never had a mix up with my reservations.
I researched the Internet for the best Las Vegas Grand Canyon Skywalk tours deals. Here are my findings:
Grand Canyon Coaches leads the pack. The companyís all-inclusive bus trip to the West Rim with Skywalk tickets costs around $129. Travel is aboard a state-of-the-art luxury bus. Includes professional driver-guide, Skywalk tickets, BBQ lunch, and a tour of Grand Canyon West.
Papillon Helicopters dusted its competitors. The operator offers a complete Skywalk package that weighs in at $375 if purchased on the Internet (that's nearly $100 off the retail price!). When you put this price side by side with its competitors, Papillon comes in 20 percent cheaper. Trip includes VIP Skywalk tickets, lunch, guided tour, and the deluxe EcoStar 130 helicopter, which features a cabin that's 25% larger than that of conventional helicopters.
Grand Canyon Airlines can't be beat. Its Skywalk tour is priced at about $200 per person (retails for $349) and includes the elite Vistaliner aircraft, a fixed-wing plane that's been designed from nose to tail for sightseeing. Includes lunch and a guided-tour of the rim.
The Grand Canyon Skywalk, a joint venture between a Las Vegas businessman and the Hualapai Indian Tribe, extends 70 feet over the edge of the rim and lifts you more than 4,000 feet above the Colorado River. The glass deck is designed to support 800 people at one time but maximum occupancy is 120. Its horseshoe-shaped deck is made of 46 Saint-Gobain Diamant low-iron glass panels that cost $250,000 each. Cameras and personal electronics are banned because if dropped they could chip the deck.
If you're visiting Vegas, make the Grand Canyon Skywalk a "must-see" attraction. Located just 120 east of town, the Skywalk can be reached by bus, helicopter, and airplane. There's a tour for each budget. To get the right deal, book direct on the tour operator's Internet site where costs are going to be at or near wholesale. Then stand back and prepare yourself for what will be the experience of a lifetime.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Travel critic Keith Kravitz reviews Grand Canyon tours. If you found this article about the Grand Canyon Skywalk helpful, check out his tour reviews at http://www.GrandCanyon123.com