25,967 Points + Club Carlson Free Night + $315.98= Trip for 2 to Indianapolis

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This summer was one of the odder ones for travel for the Michael W Travels family.

With Kim grounded from flying until Baby W Travels arrives, Lucas and I set off on three little adventures. The way it worked was that for three weeks in a row, we flew on a Monday morning and got back home early Friday evening.

We basically came home each week to visit Kim for the weekend!

Our first trip was to Cancun, Mexico– a destination I wouldn’t have picked but for the price, how could I turn the trip down! For our second trip, we headed to Boise, Idaho.

Our third and final summer escape was to Indianapolis, Indiana. Lucas and I got back from the trip a couple of weeks ago and I still wanted to share all of the trip planning details.

When I mentioned that we were going to Indianapolis (just like Boise), I was asked why we were going there.

 I basically chose Indy for similar reasons as Boise.

  1. I’ve never been to the state of Indiana and it wasn’t a place that Kim minded we visit without her.
  2. I have lots of Southwest points and a Companion Pass expiring on 12/31/16. Flights to Indianapolis didn’t seem to be pricey but for our last trip I wanted a destination that I could fly to direct on Southwest.
  3. Indianapolis seemed to have some solid, kid- friendly things to do.

Here are the details of what went into my trip planning for Indianapolis, Indiana.

The Flights: We flew roundtrip with Southwest Airlines

We flew:

  • New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA) to Indianapolis International Airport (IND)
  • Indianapolis International Airport (IND) to New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA)

I originally booked the flight for 13,581 Southwest points. I kept checking the prices when the airline ran sales and eventually got the flight for 10,967. (To get the refund, I called Southwest and they basically refunded the original points and rebooked me at the lower amount.)

Taxes for the flight cost $11.20 per person. Since I booked my flight with the Southwest Companion Pass, all I paid for Lucas was tax!

This brought the total cost for our flights to 10,967 Southwest points + $22.40.

Hotel/ Accommodations:

During the trip, we needed 4 nights of accommodations. Due to a couple of expiring offers that I had along with a promo, I ended up booking 3 places for our stay. This was definitely not ideal but also not really a big deal since we had a rental car. It also kept costs down for the trip.

Here are the properties we stayed at:

  1. Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham– I had a credit expiring with Hotels.com for $46.77 so I searched there for a moderately priced room. I was able to book the Microtel for $71.76. My credit brought the stay down to a bargain $24.99.
  2. Super 8 Indianapolis– There was an offer from Wyndham Rewards to earn 5,000 bonus points for booking a stay through the app. This enticed me enough to book a one night stay at Super 8. The cost of came to $69.03.
  3. Country Inn & Suites Indianapolis Airport South (2 nights)- I had a Club Carlson free night certificate expiring in the middle of August and no other trips planned. Since Kim isn’t traveling for now,  I used my e-certificate to book one of nights. For the second night I used  15,000 Gold Points.

The total cost for 4 nights in Indianapolis came to $94.02 + one Club Carlson Free Night E-Cert & 15,000 Club Carlson Gold Points.

Car Rental:

The toughest part of booking this trip was finding a decent deal on a car rental. I looked for weeks and waited until a few days before our trip to book a car. I was checking various sites like Hotwire, AutoSlash and CarRentals.com and couldn’t find anything cheaper than $210+.

Finally I found a rental with AutoSlash for $206 and reluctantly booked it. A day or so later, AutoSlash e-mailed me with a better deal so I switched it. I ended up booking with Payless and the 4 day rental came to $199.56.

Definitely no bargain but even the lady at the rental desk said prices have been extremely high recently. She thought it might be due to a NASCAR race, the Brickyard 400 which took place the previous weekend, ending the day before we arrived in Indy.

Total Trip Costs: 25,967 Points + 1 Club Carlson Free Night + $315.98

Overall, this was a very economical getaway. If not for a pricey rental car, I feel this trip could’ve been around $100 cheaper. Lucas and I had a nice time in Indy. The city has a bunch of kid- friendly things to do so it was definitely a fun visit. It was also nice to get to visit another state!

Have you visited Indianapolis?

Other Trip Planning Posts:

2 thoughts on “25,967 Points + Club Carlson Free Night + $315.98= Trip for 2 to Indianapolis

  1. John- Definitely a great idea. From what I recall, off-airport rentals were around $20-30 cheaper plus around 20+ minutes drive from the airport. Probably a wash when paying for the Uber roundtrip but definitely could be a great idea elsewhere.

  2. Why not rent from an off airport location and take an Uber, i do this all the time in high priced car rental cities

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