This is another guest post from my good friend (and cousin-in-law) Jen. Hope you enjoy it!
I love watching fare sales. Most of the time, I dream and don’t actually book. With work schedules, school schedules and other trips already planned, I usually don’t have the luxury of being flexible and spontaneous enough to jump on a good sale.
I subscribe to Frontier emails and got a notice a few weeks ago about a $15 sale. I plugged in our home airport MCO and looked to see what deals there were. The usual Atlanta, Birmingham, Jackson and places like that popped up. I wasn’t interested in those, but Portsmouth airport (on the border of Maine) caught my eye.
I pulled up the dates of the sale and found roundtrip tickets for the next weekend for only $24 all-in. That’s cheaper than dinner and a movie. I quickly texted my husband and asked him if he was up for an adventure and he replied with a thumbs up. He’s used to my schemes.
Because of his work schedule and a planned vacation we had coming up, he really couldn’t get much time off. However, the flight left Friday evening and returned Saturday evening so he wouldn’t have to miss any work. I booked the two tickets for a total of $48. Since we were only going for one night, we could just carry a change of clothes in our backpacks, so there was no need to pay for luggage.
The next order of business was booking a car. I plugged in our dates and times and quickly found that no rental car was available. It turns out Portsmouth is a TINY regional airport and all the rental companies close early, or so it said online. Our flight would be arriving after the desk would close.
I panicked but decided to call and ask if there was some arrangement for flights arriving later. Despite what the website said, the agent assured me if there was a flight coming in, the rental car desk would be open. This was true. I will note that they only had the exact amount of cars as reservations, and several passengers were upset they couldn’t get a car without a reservation.
We only had one night in Maine, so I wanted to stay somewhere special. In checking Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, I found that many places were already booked up, but there were a few inns that looked like they had that New England charm I was looking for. I settled on the Beach House Inn in Kennebunk and it was perfect. The price was 14,700 Ultimate Rewards points using my Chase Sapphire Reserve card. The charming inn was laid back and right on the beach. Who knew places still had real keys?
After the included breakfast at the inn, we headed up the coast. A friend of mine from Maine recommended the Cape Elizabeth Lighthouse. My husband enjoys photography, so we spent some time there relaxing and taking pictures and enjoying the weather. We were already pushing three digits in Florida, so the weather was such a nice change. Of course, we had to try lobster rolls for lunch, and there was an amazing food truck on site, Bite Into Maine.
After the lighthouse, we drove to Ogunquit, Maine. This is a quaint little tourist town that has a beautiful cliff walk called the Marginal Way that ends at Perkins Cove. Here you can see the fishing boats coming and going as you stroll along the streets, enjoying shopping and several restaurants right on the marina (more lobster rolls.)
While I would’ve loved to have a few more days in this beautiful region of the US, I say one day is better than no day, especially when you can get there for $24. I do hope to go back with the kids for a longer stay. I’ll be keeping an eye out for another sale. Note that Orlando to Portsmouth route is soon to be discontinued, but flying into Portland would also be a good option for visiting this area.
Readers, have you ever flown somewhere for just one night?
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.