Los Angeles and Las Vegas are 250 to 300 miles apart, depending on where you start in the sprawling LA metro area.
Most people who make the trip do it by automobile, but you can also go in a bus or a luxury shuttle. Or fly there. Despite the rumors or a fast train line that pop up every few years, there is no commercial train service between these two cities, so that just isn't possible.
How to Get from Los Angeles and Las Vegas
Here's a quick rundown of your options.
- Flight: 1 hour 10 minutes, from $45
- Bus: 5 to 8 hours, from $20
- Luxury Shuttle: 6 hours, from $45
- Car: 4 to 5 hours, 270 miles
If you're in a hurry, a flight looks like the fastest way to go, but by the time you add on getting to the airport early and waiting for luggage when you arrive, it's not much faster. And the hassle factor is high.
You may be surprised to find that airfare between Los Angeles and Las Vegas costs only a little more than taking the bus. That's especially true if you shop around and book a month in advance. It may not be much faster when you factor in early arrival at the airport and time spent collecting your baggage, though.
Southwest Airlines flies to Las Vegas from Los Angeles, Burbank, Orange County or Ontario. They often have the cheapest airfare, but they don't participate in any of the online travel sites. Check directly with their website, where you can also find hotel and airfare packages that make planning your trip easy.
You have lots of options for the airport you use in LA. The airport code for Las Vegas is LAS. Los Angeles is LAX, Burbank is BUR, Orange County is SNA, and Ontario ONT. Jet Blue also offers flights from Long Beach (LGB). If it's close enough to be convenient, Burbank is the area's least-annoying airport.
Direct buses can take a little as five hours (with one rest stop) or as long as eight if they make a lot of stops along the way.
Greyhound is a far more appealing option than it once was, with WiFi, express trips and prices as low as their competitors.
Megabus has seats sometimes as cheap as $1 if you reserve well in advance, but it is usually more than that. They pick up at LA's Union Station downtown and drop off at the Las Vegas RTC South Strip Transfer Terminal which is near the airport.
GotoBus takes about 5 hours. Because they offer a variety of locations on different routes, take care when booking a round trip to be sure it takes you back to where you started from.
Flixbus also offers bus service several times a day. On the LA end, they stop in five locations, including some on the Westside. Stops in Las Vegas include the Strip near Caesar's and downtown Las Vegas. If you travel at midnight or make your reservations a couple of months ahead of time, it’s especially inexpensive.
By Luxury Shuttle
You can take a luxury shuttle to Las Vegas, too. It's a nicer way to go than the bus options you'll see at the end of this guide and best thought of as a less-stressful alternative to flying.
You can settle down in a 44-passenger shuttle coach with complimentary snacks and beverages, the latest movies to keep you entertained, reclining seats and onboard attendant service.
The shuttle makes one trip per day each way, picking up and drop off at hotels in LA and Las Vegas. It's primarily designed for city-to-city transport and isn't good for a one-day trip.
To find one, do an online search for "luxury shuttle Los Angeles to Las Vegas" to turn up several companies that offer shuttle service.
By far the most popular way to make the trip between Las Vegas and LA is by driving.
If you're driving, the exact route you take between LA to Las Vegas will depend on where you start in the Los Angeles area. Pick the most direct route going east to connect with I-15 (the most commons ones are I-215, I-10 or I-605). Once you get on it, I-15 will take you straight to Las Vegas.
You might not believe that it snows in the desert, but as recently as 2017, CalTrans was considering closing I-15 near the California-Nevada state line because of snow and ice in the mountain pass. Check road status on California highways between Los Angeles and Las Vegas at the Department of Transportation website, use the CalTrans app, or call 800-427-7623. Enter each highway number separately to get information about road repairs and closures.
If your automobile contains restless children or if you're a fan of old-fashioned ghost towns, you may want to stop at Calico Ghost Town just east of Barstow for a quick stretch of the legs.
Part of your journey will follow the path of historic Route 66. You may be in a hurry to get from city to city, but if you've got a bit more time, check out what there is to see.
What to Do in Las Vegas
We've all heard that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but the TripSavvy Guide to Las Vegas has expert tips for how to make those things happen. Find out where to eat cheap, which shows are worth the money, which pool parties you can't miss, and how to visit the Hoover Dam (it's okay to need a break from the casinos).