Trip Introduction: Seventy Two Hours in Florida, USA via Alaska Airlines


The southern state of Florida is a little harder to get to from my home in the Pacific Northwest as compared to California which is an easy 2 – 3 hour flight down our home in Vancouver. When MrsWT73 had an aerospace conference to go to in Fort Lauderdale, the decision was easy in terms of making the most of a free hotel to visit a state that I don’t usually get the opportunity to see.

Trip Introduction: Seventy Two Hours in Florida, USA via Alaska Airlines

Trip Background:

Between wonderful alpine winter skiing up at Whistler where the snow was really dumping, MrsWT73 had an aerospace conference to attend to in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States of America. Her work trips are usually of the business meeting variety, and typically at the last minute. I’ve had minimal luck in the last two years in tagging along to any exotic destination. However, the travel gods were shining down on me for this trip as the dates were set in advance and with no parenting duties this weekend, it was off I went.

Airfare Planning:

I happened to locate a reasonable fare with Alaska from Vancouver to Fort Lauderdale via Alaska’s hub in Seattle at Seattle Tacoma International Airport. Like all Alaska Airlines fares, it earned 100% Elite Qualifying Miles and and 50% Redeemable Qualifying Miles MVP bonus into Alaska Mileage Plan. While Alaska Airlines isn’t known for being the cheapest carrier, it was the most direct route from the Pacific Northwest to the Florida State. At the time, it was Alaska Airlines’ longest distance flight. My flight came to $309 USD in base airfare and $122.95 in taxes and fees for a reasonable total of $431.95 USD. I was even able to use a $100 USD discount code from our past flight delays with Alaska Airlines on our Mexico – Easter Island adventure. I credited these flights to Alaska Mileage Plan.

Hotel Planning:

A large portion of the hotel stay at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina was covered as a result of MrsWT73’s conference being hosted at the hotel. The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina was a a nice hotel on the water that had a nice environment being surrounded by water marina on two sides of the property.

Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina

The Hilton Fort Lauderdale was credited to the Hilton Honors program.

We added on an extra day in Miami at the St Regis Bal Harbour property. We used Marriott Bonvoy (Starwood Preferred Guest at the time) Cash and Points availability to book a room here. The usual cash rates at the St Regis Bal Harbour are over $1,100 USD. We redeemed 15,000 Starwood Preferred Guest points (now 45,000 Marriott Bonvoy Points) and $275 USD plus taxes which was an exceptional deal at the time.

The St Regis Bal Harbour, Miami, Florida, USA
The Beach at the St REgis Bal Harbour

With that in mind, off I went. . . I left all this fantastic Whistler skiing weekend weather behind!

This post is one chapter on our trip to Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States of America. This trip was enhanced through Alaska Mileage Plan and through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.

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If you regularly visit Florida in the United States of America, do you have any tips for getting outsized value from your visit ?

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