While I have never lived personally in Las Vegas, I have visited multiple times, especially Clark County. I spent a good deal of time there during my past visits, plus I know people who have lived in Vegas. I feel like even though I am/was only a tourist, I have a pretty good feel of what the city is like.
I talked with the people I know who have lived in Vegas to get an inside look at what living there was like. I also took a survey on Instagram to try and find other people’s positive and negative things about living there. Here are the top 17!
17. No Seasons
Las Vegas is just one huge desert.
Though many people do not mind it, it can be unbearable for others. It starts off with seven months of unbearable heat, and sometimes, though not often, in the winter you can find yourself in frigid temperatures.
There is a lot of hot and a tiny bit of cold and it is definitely not ideal.
16. The Desert
Many people also have an issue with the lack of greenery. The city is big enough and the temperature is high enough that the only green stuff around can be found inside casinos, if you are lucky.
There are palm trees and grass but that’s about it as far as foliage goes. Because of how hot and dry it is, people often resort to using desert-themed yard decorations. They take out the grass and put in gravel and instead of trees and they put in rocks. It only adds to the severe lack of vegetation.
Apparently this can also lead to aging. The dry Las Vegas air sucks the moisture out of everything, including your skin which can make the wrinkles come early.
If you are planning to move to Vegas, stock up on moisturizers and humidifiers.
15. Bad Traffic
Most states have one rush hour. In Las Vegas, every hour is rush hour!
Because it has an ‘always on and going’, 24-hour work environment, Las Vegas is always jammed with people trying to get to and from work, and people trying to get to and from the city. There is a much smaller amount of police officers on patrol which makes it difficult to keep speeders and aggressive drivers in check. The freeway systems are also somewhat poor.
Many people could avoid this issue with the use of public transportation, but there really is not any of that in Las Vegas. There is no train or subway system as there is in New York and several other places.
There is a bus system, but a one-way ticket can cost around $2 which is more expensive than a lot of other places.
14. Low-Class and Unsavory
Though a capital of entertainment, Las Vegas has also been referred to as scummy, low class, and soulless. There are bad people everywhere, it is true, but there is a large number of lowlifes in Vegas.
Drugs are on the streets, often in plain view, prostitution is normal, and there is plenty of immorality that is constantly advertised.
Many places that could be family-friendly have been filled with cigarette smoke, addicts, dealers, and in some places just literal filth. That is not to say that there aren’t good people in Vegas because there are good people everywhere.
However, in bigger city areas of Las Vegas, there are plenty of characters you surely would not want to meet up with.
Addiction is rampant in Vegas: It is called Sin City for a reason, after all. Las Vegas is widely known for its vices, gambling being among the most prominent.
You can find places and situations to do it in pretty much anywhere, whether it’s in the casinos, restaurants, grocery stores, or even at home. Fine dining is okay once in a while, but the problem is, most of Vegas’s fancy restaurants reside in casinos where the temptation is always nigh.
A large issue that comes with gambling and even that contributes to the gambling problem is the alcohol that comes with it.
As casinos are the most popular gambling destinations, there are dozens of ‘free’ drinks that come with your attendance. With alcohol clouding your judgment, it is very easy to be sucked into bets you would never have made if you were in your right mind.
This is not a likely scenario for everybody, but it does happen.
12. Desert Pests
While things like mosquitoes and flies are not as much of a problem, there is still the issue of other undesirables lurking nearby.
Cockroaches can often be found in a Las Vegas home. These insects are often much worse than ants or other pests because they carry pathogens and diseases. Plus, they’re on the larger end of the scale and nothing is worse than giant bugs.
Another more prominent pest problem in Las Vegas are the scorpions.
No, I am not joking. Infestations can and will occur often if you do not take the proper measures to prevent them. Scorpions like to hide in damp areas, such as bathrooms, outdoor wood or debris piles that have gotten wet, and others.
On the occasion that you do find a scorpion in your house, you will have to contact professionals to take care of it.
The Las Vegas crime rate is actually lower than a lot of cities such as Los Angeles, but the sex trafficking rate is much higher, due to the normalization of prostitution.
“The FBI has identified Las Vegas as one of 13 High Intensity Child Prostitution Areas. In their 2017 annual report, The Nevada Coalition to Prevent the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children give an estimate of 5,687 victims of child sex trafficking in Nevada.”
Many people have said that they’ve just been walking down the street and have seen people hyped up on harmful substances. Uses of opioids have gone down, but illegal drug use has nearly tripled in frequency.
There were 7.5 deaths per 100,000 people across the state of Nevada in 2016 from Psychostimulants.
2016 saw a 32% increase in deaths from Psychostimulant use.
There were 8.9 deaths per 100,000 people across the state of Nevada in 2016 from Prescription Opioids.
Deaths from prescription Opioids fell 9 percent in 2016 across the state of Nevada. (source).
9- Lack of Moral Entertainment
There are plenty of casinos and strip clubs, it’s true, but for people who prefer cleaner methods of entertainment (especially families with small children).
There are plenty of bowling alleys and movie theaters, but the problem is that many of them can only be found inside casinos and you definitely don’t want to be taking your kids in there.
Aside from bowling alleys and movie theaters, there aren’t a whole lot of places to go that aren’t inside casinos, unfortunately.
Most fancy restaurants are located inside casinos as well.
Las Vegas ranked 13th as one of the most polluted cities from ozone pollution. There is no public transportation aside from the bus system, and moving vehicles can definitely add to this issue.
The ALA (American Lung Association) came out with several statements warning the public about the lack of safe, breathable air.
“The 2019 report also found year-round particle pollution levels lower than the 2018 report. Nationwide, the best progress in this year’s report came in reducing year-round levels of particle pollution.”Source
7- Lack of Community
Vegas is a melting pot, it is true, but many people have also described the city as very transient. When settling down, it can quickly become lonely because a lot of people there either do not have time or just don’t care about getting to know other people.
Those who have moved to Vegas in hopes of finding a sense of community have reported that they had to put themselves “out there” much more than they should have had to or wanted to.
6. Poor School Systems
The population in Las Vegas is steadily increasing, and to make up for that, they are trying to build dozens of schools all over to make up for the rising number of students.
The problem with this is that there are not nearly enough teachers to fill vacancies, and it is proving rather difficult to find them. Their starting salaries are $27,000 a year which doesn’t sound very promising to most.
In addition, they have a difficult time finding affordable housing that isn’t lower class which contributes highly to the issue. As one surveyor put it, “frustration is a permanent condition here”.
5. Cheap housing, cheap conditions
The rent and housing costs may be cheaper here than in other places, but the quality is not always worth the low price. Many people on internet forums and Instagram surveys plus people I know have described lots of the living areas in Vegas as “ghetto”.
Unfortunately, due to issues with employment and a poor economic system, several people find themselves with no alternative to a ghetto-like apartment or house because it is the best they can afford.
4. Price of Living
If you want to have any sort of stability, you will need a job that pays at least $18 an hour and that is not always a guarantee. If you are lucky enough to be a professional with a career that gets you roughly $40,000 to $50,000 a year you will survive, but it will still require you to keep a strict budget.
If you are unemployed seeking employment, it is definitely not the place to be. Nevada’s maximum unemployment benefit is only $407 weekly. If you are paying for food, rent, utilities, and a car on top of everything else, living is going to be pretty rough.
Fuel is one of the most expensive elements for a citizen of Las Vegas, with gas going up to $3.22 per gallon as of August 2019 which is 14% over the national average. (source).
That, combined with maintenance and car insurance costs can be fairly pricey.
3. Economics and Employment
Despite large amounts of money brought in from tourists, the job market is less than ideal in Vegas. Most service jobs are pretty low-paying. Hotels and casinos do not offer much by means of employment because a large portion of them are run by companies and big corporations, and these jobs are unionized which makes hiring somewhat difficult.
There are jobs, however. There are plenty of part-time options which many companies often opt for so they do not have to pay benefits, plus it cuts payroll costs.
Unfortunately, this is sometimes not efficient for many people to live off of. Some end up having to get 2-3 part-time jobs at a time to cover all of their expenses which is far less than ideal. Job seekers and entrepreneurs need to find work permits and licenses for everything.
2. Las Vegas is Not Family Friendly
Las Vegas is the city that never sleeps.
It is open and running 24/7, with casinos, bars, clubs, and all kinds of places for people to visit. While this might be okay for the adults, where are you going to take your kids during the day? I’ve already mentioned that most movie theaters, bowling alleys, and several restaurants are embedded inside fancy casinos.
There tends to be a lot of smoke and unsavory characters around. Definitely not a place you want to take your kids for a family night out.
In addition, it can be a pretty scary place to walk around at night, depending on where you are. If you are out for an evening walk, DO NOT GO ALONE.
There are plenty of good people everywhere, but there are definitely bad ones too. If you must go out at night, have someone with you at all times.
1. Prostitution is Normal in Las Vegas
Prostitution, though illegal, has become a somewhat normal practice in several parts of Las Vegas. And that is not the only problem. You may be handed a filthy pamphlet anywhere in the city, and anywhere you look is basically plastered with adult images.
Again, this is difficult for families with any number of children because it’s hard to find places of entertainment that are not filled with inappropriate images and even people.
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