2018 WSOP Planning Part I: Preparing for a Long, Hot Summer in Sin City

The WSOP is the NCAA Tournament of poker. Each year, players and fans who haven’t been paying attention to the game the past year descend upon the desert in hopes of striking it rich.

Las Vegas, the greatest travel destination in America, is the site of the 2018 World Series of Poker, as it has been the past 48 years. Despite the insanely hot summer temperatures that exceed 100 degrees on most days, Sin City is the perfect town to host poker’s most prestigious annual extravaganza.

But if you aren’t properly prepared for the summer, you’ll have a miserable experience.

Stay Hydrated

Drink water. Lots of it. Las Vegas is in the middle of the desert, which means it’s going to be hot and sunny everyday. Even late at night, temps will still be in the upper 90s. Some people claim the weather isn’t bad because it’s a dry heat in Las Vegas. Those people have never been to Las Vegas.

While I do prefer dry heat to humidity, which is what I dealt with growing up in Iowa, the summers in Vegas are brutal. Saying “110 degrees isn’t bad in dry heat” is like saying “it’s just herpes, it won’t kill you.”

Bring Food to the Rio

There is plenty to eat at the Rio, including a new cafe that will open during the WSOP inside the convention center. And you can pay for a meal package with All-American Dave, a healthy eating food truck that WSOP players love.

But unless you have an unlimited budget, it’s best to bring a prepared meal with you to the Rio. All-American Dave is great and there are some quality restaurants inside the Rio, but you’ll average $20 a meal, which will…ahem…eat into your bankroll. If you’re renting a house in town, prepare healthy meals and bring them with you to the table each day. If that isn’t feasible and you can afford an expensive but tasty and healthy meal, I recommend purchasing a meal package from All-American Dave.

Regardless of your budget, avoid greasy fast-food. Poker is a grind. You need to be well nourished to play your best. McDonald’s is cheap and, like many of you, I occasionally have a late-night craving for some Chicken McNuggets, But I’m usually disciplined enough to avoid the temptation. Unfortunately, you won’t find many healthy restaurants in the touristy areas. Most of the grub is greasy and fattening, especially on Fremont Street. But if you get away from the Strip, you’ll find a decent, healthy meal at places like Greens and Proteins.

Seek Value, Not a Cheap Price in Housing

You can get a dirt cheap place to stay in Vegas, whether it’s in a weekly rental at the Siegel Suites or some ghetto apartment. If you stay at one of those places, you’ll definitely get what you paid for. But you won’t realize until you stay there that what you paid for is bed bugs and your room robbed.

Many homeowners rent out their house during the summer specifically for poker players. They aren’t usually too expensive if you have a roommate or two. Going home to a comfortable bed each night is important for poker players who have to wake up the next day prepared for a long day of poker.

Author: Jon Sofen