William Becker, Co-Founder of Motel 6, Dies

A few years back, a friend shared a secret with me that has changed the way I travel to Las Vegas. After spending weeks in advance of my second trip to Sin City searching through numerous cheap hotel websites to find the best deal, I asked this friend for advice — what’s the cheapest place to stay on or near Las Vegas Boulevard?

I’m a budget traveler, almost to a fault — partly by choice, partly by poverty, but mostly by nature. On family trips as a child, Dad would use coupons at Taco Bell. I mean really, can you get much cheaper than a $0.59 taco? I digress.

“Dude, just stay at the Motel 6,” my friend tells me (that’s how all Southern Californians talk, isn’t it?), “it’s right off the strip and cheap as hell!”

He was right. It was right off the strip, on Tropicana. I could throw a baseball and hit the MGM. The orange spandex-clad girls of the newly opened Hooters Hotel and Casino were tantalizingly close, almost too close. Cheap as hell, too — weekend rates were about $80 a night, compared to at least double that anywhere else on the strip. Since I found out about the Motel 6 on Tropicana, I I’ve stayed there every time I’ve been to Vegas. It’s small, sure — but clean. And man, is it cheap!

That’s my Motel 6 story. Rest in peace, Mr. Becker. We’ll leave the light on for ya.

[News via World Hum]