Trip Planning: $511.59 + 15,000 Points= Trip for 3 to Charleston, SC

charleston south carolina
image: google maps

Back in December I wrote about booking a flight to Charleston with JetBlue after big changes were announced.

We just got back from our trip and I wanted to write a little trip planning post to show exactly what we booked and spent to make this long weekend come together.

During our time in Charleston, we toured a few plantations, ate too much tasty food and visited a bunch of other interesting sites. We enjoyed our visit and would like to visit again in the future…

FYI- This is Kim, Lucas and my first trip to South Carolina.

Trip Planning:

The Flights:

I’ve been wanting to visit Charleston for years but the price never seemed right. I tried finding flights with Southwest when Kim and I had the Companion Pass but it was never available for the dates we needed or there was some other issue the rare time it was.

When I came across a tweet from The Flight Deal about a deal for flights for New York- Charleston, I decided to go for it.

Our flights were with JetBlue, flying direct both ways.

  • New York (JFK) to Charleston (CHS)
  • Charleston (CHS) to New York (JFK)

The cost for each ticket to fly from New York to Charleston came to $116.20 for a total cost of $348.60.


There were a bunch of options for hotels using points but we couldn’t pass up staying with a Club Carlson property. However, since we were only staying 3 nights in hotels, this meant we had to switch. (Due to the Club Carlson credit card offer of stay 2+ nights, get the 2nd night free on award bookings, we never stay an odd amount of nights using points.)

This wasn’t a big deal since I had an IHG Chase Anniversary Night expiring that I wanted to get rid of.

Here are the hotels I booked:

  • Nights 1 & 2: Radisson Hotel Charleston Airport
  • Night 3: Holiday Inn Express: Charleston Downtown- Ashley River

I used 15,000 Club Carlson Gold Points to book the first two nights. (If I wasn’t a Club Carlson credit card holder, the cost would’ve been double.) If I had chosen to pay for the hotel, it would’ve cost $81.75 per night for a total of $187.60.

Our third night cost us a Chase Anniversary Free Night. (I guess we could price this at $49 since that is the cost of the annual fee.) If I had chosen to pay for the stay, the HI would’ve cost $208.85 making it $238.24 with tax.

Total Cost: 15,000 Gold Points + One Chase Anniversary Free Night ($49)

Car Rental:

I searched and searched but couldn’t find any cheap deals for a rental car. Autoslash had nothing, Priceline and Hotwire were pricey so I kept on checking. I settled on the usual, Hertz for our 3 day rental.

I booked an intermediate car for 3 days which came to a total of $113.99.

Total Trip Budget:

  • Flight: $348.60
  • Hotels: 15,000 Club Carlson Gold Points + Chase Free Anniversary Night ($49)
  • Car Rental: $113.99

Our total out-of-pocket trip planning expenses came to $511.59. (That’s including the IHG Chase annual fee.)

While this wasn’t one of our cheapest domestic trips in recent years, it is still a pretty good price for three people to fly and stay in Charleston. It would’ve been nice to spend less but sometimes you have to pay a bit more to visit a place that you’d really like to visit…

2 thoughts on “Trip Planning: $511.59 + 15,000 Points= Trip for 3 to Charleston, SC

  1. Interesting, I failed to realize they had a Radisson near the airport. We ended up at Country inn and Suites for two nights which was fine. I will have to keep that in mind.

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