myVEGAS: Is It Worth It?

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In Las Vegas, comps (“complimentaries” or freebies) are handed out to those gambling a certain amount (a lot) of money. Depending on how much you spend, you could be comped a free meal, a show ticket, or even your room for the length of your stay. Even low rollers like me can score free drinks while playing the penny slots. This is part of what makes gambling fun. I mean, who doesn’t like free stuff?

Except this is just one of the many ways Vegas psychs people out. Because in this case, “free” isn’t really free. It’s more like the casino version of a cashback credit card or an airline rewards card. You’re being rewarded for spending money by getting something in return that is worth a fraction of what you spent. If you’re playing max bet at bartop video poker, you’ll get a free drink, all right, but if you’re not winning, you can run through $60 in 30 minutes of play or less. That’s a pretty expensive “free” drink.


But it’s not just money that can lose its value in the chasing of comps. You’ve heard the expression “Time is money”? You have to consider what your time is worth, too. Which brings me to the reason why I am writing today’s post: The online game called myVEGAS.

More and more Vegas visitors are chasing comps via a Facebook game called myVEGAS. This is a free game, so it costs you no money (in theory), but you can rack up points that can be exchanged for real-world comps in Vegas, like meals, shows, drinks and even rooms. Sounds like a screaming deal, right?


myVEGAS wheel spin results

There’s a daily wheel spin for points.

My Experiment Using myVEGAS

I have to admit, I don’t play online games, so I found the popularity of myVEGAS baffling at first. Don’t people have better things to do with their time? I thought. Last spring, I decided to sign up for myVEGAS to see what all the fuss was about. I wrote down my initial thoughts during my first few rounds playing the game. Here’s what I wrote, verbatim:

Oh God. It IS fun. I played the game for 15 minutes and I can easily see why people get hooked on this. It’s like playing slots in Vegas on someone else’s dime—and you win a lot more than you do on real machines! Good Lord, it’s insidious! It’s like drug dealers handing out free samples of crack so they can get you hooked and keep you coming back for more! AUGH!

After years of diligently hiding every reference of every fricking Facebook game that my friends have ever played, now Facebook thinks I actually want to see that stuff again. No, Facebook, I don’t want to play Farmville! FML.

After that I forgot to record my thoughts, but I can easily tell you what I like and don’t like about myVEGAS.



Annoying pop-up trying to coax me into buying points.

What I like:

  • It’s fun to play slots for free.
  • It’s cool that you can earn freebies for playing.
  • There’s an auto-spin button so you can set a certain bet and the game will play itself for 10, 25, 50, 100 or 200 spins while you go off and do something else. Thank God for automation.

What I don’t like:

  • Every single time I logged into myVEGAS, I would have to click through 3-4 pop-up boxes that wanted me to buy things or hand over my credit card number to Facebook. I have found no way to shut those boxes off permanently.
  • The variety of games is limited, so after awhile, I got sick of playing the same games all the time.
  • The games often caused my computer to freeze, and I’d have to reboot it.
  • There are certain restrictions for redemptions that I find limiting, like you can only redeem 3 things in a certain period of time and you can’t redeem for more than one of the same thing at a time.
  • Most importantly, you have to play for a very long time to accumulate the amount of rewards points needed to get any of the good comps.


This game is seriously time-consuming

I quickly learned there were sneaky ways of accumulating points faster, but they were all things I wasn’t willing to do, like:

  • Bug my Facebook friends to play, too
  • Create a fake Facebook account and friend thousands of other myVEGAS players (total strangers to me) to accumulate more points every day
  • Sign up for a credit card I don’t want
  • Buy game points
  • Share my credit card with Facebook

So I had to earn my points the old-fashioned way: Slowly, over time.


redemption printout

Printout of my buffet redemption. (Totally not worth it, by the way.)


By the time of my July trip to Vegas, I had enough points to redeem for something small. But I couldn’t do it, because everything I wanted was constantly “sold out.” No matter what time of day or day of the week I checked, they were always sold out. I finally learned that they roll over the comps every day at 7am Vegas time, or 10am Eastern time (my time). So I started checking at 10am. STILL SOLD OUT. What kind of racket is this? I thought. I gave up.

I thought about disabling the app on Facebook at that time. But I had another trip coming up in October and I knew I wouldn’t be able to write about myVEGAS until I’d actually gone through the process of redeeming points. So I kept playing. By September, I had earned enough points to redeem them for:

  • a free Saturday night stay at the Luxor
  • a free breakfast at the Luxor’s buffet
  • a free margarita at Tacos & Tequila at the Luxor

Shockingly, all were available at 7pm on a Saturday night. I clicked “redeem” and felt triumphant.


Luxor room

I scored this room at the Luxor on a Saturday night as a myVEGAS comp.


The redemption process itself went smoothly. I called the number that myVEGAS gave me to book my Saturday night hotel comp. It was a bit of a hassle to make 2 different bookings, because I booked the other 5 nights on a special offer I received through my Mlife (MGM Resorts’ loyalty club) account. But everything worked out just fine.

I printed up my redemptions for the free drink and buffet. I brought them to the Mlife counter at the Luxor to get them loaded onto my players card. All I had to do was tell the staff at the buffet and at Tacos & Tequila that I had the comp on my card. In both places, it worked without a hitch. (Note: Redemptions don’t include gratuities, so remember you still need to tip your server.)


T and T

The house margarita was undrinkable. What a waste of a comp.

Is It Worth It?

That depends on how much free time you have and whether you enjoy spending it playing online games, and how diligent you are about finding ways to get around the rules to increase your freebies with less effort. I personally found it to be a huge waste of time.

Of the 3 comps I received, only the Saturday night stay at the Luxor was of any value (my fault for two bad choices, I guess). Even then, I would have been better off just paying cash. Here’s why:

  • Cost of Luxor breakfast buffet: $16.
  • Cost of margarita: $12.
  • Approximate cost of Saturday night stay at the Luxor (guesstimate, I forgot to write it down): $150
  • Number of hours at my day job to earn the money to pay for these things: 6.35.
  • Approximate number of hours spent playing myVEGAS to earn these things (calculated as 180 days x 40 minutes per day average, a conservative estimate): 120.
  • Value of 120 hours of my time based on my salary: $3,326


If it’s true that “time is money” then I spent $3,326 on an undrinkable margarita, a terrible breakfast, and a hotel room at the Luxor for one night. Those are pretty damn expensive “freebies” if you ask me.

But that’s just my opinion of myVEGAS. What’s yours–love it, hate it, or haven’t tried it?


46 thoughts on “myVEGAS: Is It Worth It?

  1. ContactRida

    wow. thank you for taking the time to really investigate this. i prefer to pay for the ‘comps’ than play for them. hopefully i will get lucky again on Priceline and get another great hotel deal. great post!

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      I think the people who are making it work for them are people who are really into online games to begin with, Jeff. If that’s the case, sure, why not get some freebies, too? But otherwise, it’s just not worth it.

  2. Scarletcat

    I’m impressed you took the time to get enough points for the Saturday room! Impressive work and thank you for it!

    I too have found it a waste of time for the “comp” available. It’s the first and only FB game I’ve tried and it has left me quite underwhelmed. I’ve tried the “long awaited” mobile app recently and if anything could top the FB game it’s that. I thought this would be an easy way to add some points to my MLife account, but I’m still waiting to see any benefit in 4 months of play.

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      I’m with you, Scarletcat. I never would have seen it through to the redemption of points if I weren’t planning to blog about it, I’d have given up after about a month.

  3. Craig

    Personally I like the game. It’s free, the ‘ comps ‘ are free and not ‘paid for ‘ comps since I didn’t spend a cent to get them. Yes, time is money, but I’m not spending company time playing the game , so I don’t think that applies here. I’m looking forward to eating my rewards and if I don’t like what I redeemed the points for? No big deal since it was free. I can always go to Earl of Sandwich and get a decent sandwich for $6 any time of day.

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      Hi, Craig! I’m so sorry for the delay getting your comment on the site. It got caught up in my spam filter for some reason. Glad to hear from somebody who does think the game is worth it. Have you redeemed any comps yet? How were they?

  4. Nicole

    I started playing myVEGAS when it came out last year as a brainless time killer when sitting around in front of the TV in the evening. The rewards in the beginning were great! Better food options and two tickets to shows at lower redemption amounts. Now it seems most of the “good” comps are always sold out. I said to my husband just tonight that we should see what we can get for our upcoming trip in January and then I’m done! Then I said, “OH! I should see if Vegas Solo is updated!” 😉

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      I, too, have noticed a decline in good comps, Nicole. And hey, I’m really honored that you thought of me as soon as you thought of your Vegas trip. Thanks! 🙂

  5. Kayday

    There’s also the problem that many of these “freebies” require you to buy something else in order to redeem them (“free” drink with entree purchase, for example). Figuring that in, my “free” absinthe at Sage cost around $200. That’s a lot of money to find out I really don’t like absinthe after all! (Good thing the dinner was terrific.)

  6. Phyllis

    I am not into online games by any means, I never bought any chips, I played in my spare time as did other members in my group. We played for about 2 months and I had enough for two free buffets in Vegas. The other people in my group had about the same. It was simple and we saved about 60 bucks.

      1. Elane Dickenson

        I enjoy playing on-line slot machines, so before I discovered this one I frittered on others that just accumulated points with no place to spend them. With MyVegas I got a free “O” ticket and two good buffets on my last trip for time I probably would have wasted anyway. For someone like me, who just enjoys the game for itself, it’s well worth the time.

        1. Gray Cargill Post author

          Yes, Elane, I think that’s what it all boils down to. It’s not worth doing it just to try to get comps. But if you enjoy spending your time that way and would do it regardless, then you might as well get comped for it!

  7. Marc

    I’ve been thinking about MyVegas for a couple weeks and needed to re-read this. You covered everything I needed. The valuation of time is great because time really is money for me.

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      I’m glad you found it helpful, Marc. Obviously, everyone will have a different opinion, depending on how much time vs. money they have, how much they enjoy playing online games, etc. but for me, it just wasn’t worth the outlay of time.

  8. Tina Christie-Rowlings

    I have been playing MyVegas from close to the beginning… last May, I was able to get a ticket to see Zarkana (was on one of the couches, 3 rows from the stage), the buffet at Excalibur (so not worth it), and a free pastry at Jean-Philippe Patisserie (excellent)….. I enjoy playing the games, something to do while watching TV…. This May, I will be spending 3 nights at The Aria, all comped by the game, and only have to pay the resort fees…..

  9. Andrew Fry (@andrewfry72)

    Booking 9 months ahead has given me a lot of casual lunchtime MyVegas playtime to accumulate enough points for a free breakfast buffet, Five50 pizza & beer and one Signature Pastry at Jean Philippe Patisserie. Hopefully I will find the self control not to redeem them all in one day…

  10. Andrew Fry (@andrewfry72)

    One thing caught me out – visiting the the MLife desk in Aria to redeem my rewards, I was told to choose there and then which specific day each reward was to be used. Panicking a bit I chose three consecutive days. I managed to redeem the buffet (very good), Five50 pizza (excellent) but ended up missing out on the pastry as I was away from the hotel all day.

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      Yikes, Andrew, that is a bummer. Couldn’t you have gone to the MLife desk each time you wanted to use something instead of all at once? That’s a pain, too, but then at least you’d know you wouldn’t miss out on the reward.

  11. neminem

    Amusingly, I started playing myvegas about a month ago, after Cracked linked to this post. I thought I would mention my thoughts, which is that, yes, time is definitely money, but time isn’t all worth the *same* amount of money. A game I can run in the background while doing other things on the computer at home on the weekend, that time “costs” a lot less than the time I’m at work. After all, at work I can’t do other fun things at the same time, I’m stuck in my chair working. I’ve *run* MyVegas for probably dozens of hours at this point, but it’s not all time I was actually devoting specifically to playing it. Maybe a few hours of decision-making, a couple hours spread out over many hours of occasionally clicking a button, and the majority of the time spent with my computer crunching numbers, while I was off doing other things. 😉

    I don’t remember *exactly* how long I’ve been playing it – maybe closer to 2 months than 1 – but still. I already have about 150k coins. I’m going to keep playing until I just have 3 nights at Luxor for free (technically, for 28 bucks a night, with the “resort fee”, but still, that is crazy cheap for any hotel that isn’t absolutely disgusting. Luxor isn’t amazing, but at least when I stayed there a couple years ago, it also wasn’t awful. Anyway, if I were staying just about anywhere in Vegas, I’d have to pay the resort fee extra on top of a non-comped room rate, anyway.)

    I definitely have no desire to go anywhere near any of the free drinks/food – after all, they’re only giving those away because they need people to show up. Places selling food/drinks that don’t suck, don’t need to give crap away to get customers. (I do, however, intend to get my wife to play enough to pick up a couple of those cheap 2-for-1 show deals.)

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      neminem – Thanks for your perspective. I know a lot of people agree with you about time spent on myVegas. I have heard the comps are getting weaker than they used to be, though. Too bad. Luxor is a pretty great deal, in my opinion. I haven’t stayed in the Pyramid rooms, but I had a Tower room that was ridiculously cheap and in great shape, so I wasn’t complaining.

      1. Sandy

        What happened if when I left the Caddy Shack game while it’s running 100 times and I wasn’t around to “tee off” do I lose all the coins previously accumulated? Start all over?

        1. Gray Cargill Post author

          No, it just sits there until you come back to it, Sandy. I’ve done that many times myself. Maybe if you turned off your computer when it was stuck in tee off mode, I don’t know about that, but if you just are delayed getting back to it, it’ll wait for you. 🙂

    2. Lea

      Just wanted to reply to disagree with the part of Neminem’s comment that stated any restaurant giving away free food or drinks must “suck” and be unable to get customers. This is a very broad statement and not true–especially when it comes to Vegas dining. There’s a reason thousands of restaurants across the country participate in things like Groupon and give away coupons—because it actually MAKES them money, bringing in new clientele.

      Most of the food/drink freebies on MV are establishments inside Vegas resorts. They’re bringing in people who may not have eaten there without the freebie, and they usually bring paying customers with them, as, statistically, you’re more likely to be in Vegas as a couple/group. Not only is there a high chance they’ll make the money back from other people in their group (or buying add ons), but it gets you into their casino. You’ll walk by the tables/slots to get to the restaurants, and may gamble. Bingo! There’s not many stand-alone offers on myVegas, and it’s all very calculated- resorts wouldn’t offer comps if it caused them to lose money or break even- this is Vegas after all! I wouldn’t judge food based on if a deal is being offered, but rather go on Google or Yelp and read reviews. There’s some crappy food joints offering deals, but there’s also some reeeallllyyy good ones (in the higher point range, which is another good indicator).

      1. Gray Cargill Post author

        Agreed, Lea. I’ve seen some great coupons/discounts/comps for things I consider to be very worthwhile. It doesn’t happen a lot, but it does happen. It’s not always because they don’t have the business or need the business, it’s about reaching different consumers. Look at Restaurant Week; most of those restaurants aren’t participating (offering 3 course meals at a great discount) because they suck or need the business. They’re doing it for charity and to reach new clientele. It works out for them, certainly, but they would have plenty of business without doing it.

  12. emantha

    When you redeemed points for your free room were you asked to pay a resort fee?
    My co-worker got a free room with her MyVegas points for the Luxor They asked her to pay a resort fee. How is it a free room if you are asked to pay a resort fee?

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      I can’t recall off the top of my head, emantha, since it was well over a year ago, but I want to say that I did have to pay resort fees. Maybe someone who has redeemed more recently would know better? I certainly agree with you that if you have to pay the resort fee (which is not optional), then it’s not a “free” room at all.

    2. Jacqueline

      I redeemed some points for a couple of nights at the mirage a couple of weeks ago.
      Yes, when you redeem it, it shows on the fine print (on the app and the email with the instructions) that you have to pay the resort fee (and tax). Came out to $32 a day for me.
      Not exactly free, but resort fees are added on your bill also when you book through the regular means also – so I may be used to it because of that. Still, money saved for other things. 🙂

      1. Gray Cargill Post author

        Hi, Jacqueline – Those darn resort fees. Grr. It’s hard to get a hotel room completely free these days because of those. But as you say, at least you got the Mirage for $32/night. That’s a pretty good price for that property!

    3. Phil

      It’s usually a small fee. The most I’ve paid is $25. Even in Atlantic City , you pay the local NJ taxes and they have now asked that you pay a resort fee.

  13. Bob S.

    I have been playing for over a year now and have accumulated 280,000 loyalty coind and plan on using them for the 2 free premium seats at KA and two tickets to Tourney of Kings at Excalibur for a trip I booked in July. I found no issue just hitting 200 auto spins on my phone and letting the game do its thing. Hopefully i get good seats for the KA show.

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      Wow, you guys with your over 200,000 rewards points make me a little envious. If only it weren’t so time-consuming to get them. Still, free seats to Ka is a pretty good reward. Congrats to you, Bob.

  14. Allen T

    Hi Just chiming in here. Just randomly playing via the app (not on fb) and logging in every day to get bonus money/rewards I have accumulated over 210000 reward points. I have not spent a penny in actual money. With my Vegas trip not scheduled until May of 2016, I should have enough for some great rewards. I think it is totally worth it and gave recommended it to friends.. Also, they added the MyVegas app for Blackjack and both games total your rewards together…

  15. Phil

    We are big users of MyVegas Comps. I agree with you , that 3 redemptions at a time suck but things have changed. You can now redeem ( but only from the Statoins Casinos ) unlimited breakfast or lunch comps. There’s a catch though BUT you get around it easily. You must use them in a 24 hour rotation. For example , if you had breakfast at Palace Station at 8am , you can’t go back until after 8am one day , the next day you have to wait past 8 am. So 810 even. Once the 24 hours had passed you’re good to go. Same applies to lunch. We get the high end buffets for our “Choose only 3 ” for example MGM Grand (52000 gold coins ) and for the rest of the stay , we get the stations. Example , Palace Statuon and Sunset station. We basically played the game for 3 years ( we are both retired lol ) and each earned over 300,000 coins, THEN , we planned our trip. When we used this method , we kept our reciepts ( the have to give you a reciept to be accountable ) and when our trip was over , was added them up. We did not have to spend $3276 of our liquid cash. This includes show and entertainment rewards.
    Not to bad if you have free time on your hands. We appreciate and respect your point of view also 🙂

    1. Gray Cargill Post author

      Thank you, Phil. You’ve obviously made very good use of myVEGAS. I mean, wow, over $3K? That’s amazing. Things have definitely changed with the game since I wrote this, including, as you note, new partners like the Stations casinos. For people with a car in Vegas, you can take advantage of many more rewards per trip. I still am not happy with the majority of food, beverage and show rewards that are “buy one, get one” (those are no good for solos) and it appears there is less availability for comped nights among the MGM resorts, which is a shame. Still, if you have lots of free time and don’t mind playing the game, you can get something in return for your time. Just choose wisely. 🙂

  16. Julianne Baxter

    Yes, there are less comped rooms available as rewards, but as we travel to Vegas a couple times per year we just go around the MLife offers. Right now we were planning a trip and I have 2 comp nights available a several of the resorts. So I only pay the resort fees/taxes about $35 per night (Fri & Sat nights) at the Monte Carlo. When you are staying at an MLife resort, then your buffet options are much cheaper and they are available for singles…not all BOGO. Same with show tix, the free ticket is way more than the BOGO, but it is available. I play daily during my TV or kitchen time. It’s a nice way to waste minutes while waiting for the water to boil LoL!

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