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Orlando Cheap Flights: Here’s How to Book With Miles, Points, or Cash

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Orlando Cheap Flights: Here’s How to Book With Miles, Points, or Cash

Million Mile SecretsOrlando Cheap Flights: Here’s How to Book With Miles, Points, or CashMillion Mile Secrets Team

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INSIDER SECRET:  When you use credit card miles or points to pay for your flights, you can earn frequent flyer miles on your free flight.  And if the cash price of the flight is cheap, you could end up using fewer points compared to booking an award flight with airline miles.

A trip to Disney to see Mickey or Universal Studios to visit Harry Potter is on many must-do lists. These theme parks in Orlando, Florida are perennial favorites!

While park tickets can be pricey, your flights don’t have to be. A trip to Orlando is well within reach if you want to redeem miles and points from the best credit cards for travel! And there are lots of ways to find those Orlando cheap flights with miles, points, or cash.

Disney World is expensive, so you’ll want to know all the ways to get Orlando cheap flights

How to Get Orlando Cheap Flights

We’ve written our tips to save money at Disney World. Now we’ll show you the best ways to use your points.

We’ll also give you tips about budget airlines. And how to offset the cost of your flights!

If you want to visit the theme parks, Orlando International Airport (MCO) is the best airport to fly into. Luckily, it’s a decent-sized airport with direct flights to many destinations in the US and one-stop flights from almost anywhere.

Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest, Spirit, and United Airlines all fly into Orlando from destinations across the US.  Let’s take a look at some options to get there.


Southwest is a great option, especially if you have the Southwest Companion Pass. The pass allows you to bring a companion with you on any Southwest flight for only the cost of taxes (~$6 each way in the US) on both paid and award tickets. Yes, that means you can redeem your Southwest points for your flight, pay ~$6 in taxes, and bring a companion along for no additional points and ~$6 more!

Use your Southwest Companion Pass to fly to Orlando and visit Universal Studios Volcano Bay Waterpark!

Southwest flies from Orlando to 40+ destinations within the US all year and they fly to 10+ more destinations seasonally.

Let’s take a look at some typical cash and points prices on popular one-way Southwest routes for late-summer travel.

  • Indianapolis (IND) to Orlando – $82 to $117 or 4,911 to 7,401 points
  • Las Vegas (LAS) to Orlando – $159 to $216 or 10,449 to 12,553 points
  • Denver (DEN) to Orlando – $95 to $166 or 5,854 to 11,006 points

Remember that with either option, you can bring a companion with your Southwest Companion Pass for only an additional ~$6 in taxes. Read our step-by-step guide about how to get the Southwest Companion Pass if you want to find out more.

Another thing that’s great about Southwest is that you can redeem your points as long as there’s a seat available. You don’t have to worry about award availability like you do with other airlines! That means that even if you are traveling with your family of 5 during the holidays or spring break, you can use points for everyone. It just may cost more points because the points cost is tied to the cash price on Southwest.

Remember you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest at a 1:1 ratio.

American Airlines

American Airlines flies into Orlando from 9 airports in the US. Depending on where you are flying from, the cheapest award tickets will be with either American Airlines miles or British Airways Avios points. You can book American Airlines flights with British Airways Avios points because they are partners.

Since you’ll be saving so much on your flights, consider staying at the Hilton Orlando Resort and floating down the lazy river

One of the best uses of British Airways Avios points is for short flights on American Airlines. That’s because a one-way coach award ticket is only 7,500 British Airways Avios points for flights up to 1,151 miles. This applies to American Airlines flights from:

  • Charlotte
  • Chicago
  • Dallas
  • Miami
  • New York (LGA)
  • Philadelphia
  • Washington, DC National (DCA)

If you have a longer flight or a connection, you’ll be better off booking with American Airlines miles.

For example, a winter one-way flight from Charlotte to Orlando on American Airlines costs $376, but you can book this same flight for only 7,500 British Airways Avios points!

British Airways Avios points are easy to earn. You can transfer from Chase Ultimate Rewards, AMEX Membership Rewards, or Marriott Bonvoy.

If you are looking at booking a connecting flight or have one of the longer American Airlines flights, your better bet is going to be to use your American Airlines miles to book your ticket. American Airlines charges 12,500 American Airlines miles for a one-way award flight from anywhere in the continental US, or 25,000 American Airlines miles round-trip.

United Airlines

United Airlines flies direct to Orlando from 8 destinations in the US. For the most part, United Airlines charges 12,500 United Airlines miles for a one-way award flight from the mainland US. And 25,000 United Airlines miles for a round-trip flight.

But these prices only apply for travel before November 15, 2019. For flights after that date, United will price awards dynamically. So you should expect the price to vary according to the cash price of the flight. You’re likely to find cheaper awards during low seasons and outrageously priced flights during times of high demand.

No visit to Orlando is complete without seeing Mickey and Minnie at Disney’s Magic Kingdom

Earning United Airlines miles is easy.  And United Airlines is a Chase transfer partner.


Delta flies 13 direct flights to Orlando all year, and an additional 2 seasonal routes. Even though there is no longer a Delta award chart, you shouldn’t discount Delta for your trip to Orlando.

For example, you can get a one-way flight from Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) to Orlando for only 9,500 Delta miles. The flight does have one stop, but that’s still a great deal.

You Can Get Great Deals on Flights to Orlando With Delta Miles!

The same flights would otherwise cost $324. And there are regular Delta SkyMiles deals award sales with cheaper prices (subscribe to our newsletter to get updates on them).

Buy Cheap Flights to Orlando With Cash

If you’re low on miles, or want to save them for an international trip, another option is to travel with a budget airline.

Allegiant Air

Orlando is a focus city for Allegiant Air. They operate a limited schedule. But if they fit your travel plans, you could get a good deal!

Note: Allegiant Air flies into Orlando-Sanford Airport (SFB), NOT Orlando International Airport (MCO).

Sanford Airport is ~60 minutes from Orlando (depending on traffic), so you’ll need to arrange a shuttle or car service. Or pick up a rental car when you land.

Allegiant flies into Orlando-Sanford direct from 61 US airports and 12 more airports seasonally. And they’re typically cheaper than major airlines. For example, you can often find one-way flights to Orlando for $100 or less.

Be aware of extra fees with Allegiant Air, though. They charge for your carry-on bag, snacks, and even to use a credit card to book your flight!

Frontier Airlines

Frontier Airlines often has great sales including “penny fares” which when you include taxes come out to $15 one way on select routes. You can get a good deal!

Frontier flies year-round from 48 US destinations to Orlando, and 10 more destinations seasonally.

Frontier sales are a great way to book cheap flights to Orlando. With this sale there were dozens of flights to Orlando available for $79 or less

As with other budget airlines, be on the lookout for extra fees.


JetBlue flies to 21 destinations in the US to Orlando all year long, and beyond to a number of Caribbean and Central American destinations.

You could fly from Atlanta to Orlando for a week-long trip this fall for only $107 per person round-trip.

Keep an eye out for JetBlue fare sales, because sometimes you can snag a very cheap flight! And if you want to redeem JetBlue points you can transfer them from Chase Ultimate Rewards, but remember JetBlue award seat prices are tied to the cost of a paid ticket.

JetBlue won’t charge you extra to bring on a full-size carry-on bag, but they do have checked bag fees.

Spirit Airlines

Spirit has a bad reputation, but they offer some incredibly cheap flights! Spirit has direct flights to Orlando from 30 destinations in the US.

You can book a flight from Detroit to Orlando this fall for only $185 per person round-trip.

As with other budget airlines, don’t forget that Spirit is notorious for charging additional fees. Make sure you account for those before you commit yourself to a Spirit flight.

Use Flexible Points to Pay for Cash Flights

Redeem Citi ThankYou Points With the Citi Premier

Another helpful trick is to redeem Citi ThankYou points for flights. If you have the Citi Premier℠ Card you’ll get 1.25 cents per Citi ThankYou point when you book flights through the Citi ThankYou Travel Center.

Note: You can also get 1.25 cents per ThankYou point when using them to book flights through the Citi ThankYou Travel Center with the Citi Prestige® Card, but this benefit is disappearing from this card on September 1, 2019.

If you want to visit Sea World during peak travel times, you can redeem your ThankYou points through the Citi travel site with no blackout dates!

That means that a $300 flight will cost 24,000 Citi ThankYou points. So a family of 4 could fly to Orlando for under 100,000 Citi ThankYou points.

Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

Chase offers a similar way to redeem your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for flights. If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, your Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1.25 cents each if you book through the Chase travel portal.  And if you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can do even better with a rate of 1.5 cents per point.

So with the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’ll pay only 20,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points for the same $300 flights. That means that you can actually fly a family of 5 to Orlando for 100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points!

The Chase Sapphire Reserve also offers up to a $300 annual travel credit that can be used for anything travel related, including flights!

Redeem Points for Travel Statement Credits

You could consider cards like the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card or Barclaycard Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard® if you prefer to redeem points and miles for travel statement credits after booking flights directly with your card.

Aquatica isn’t as well known as many other Orlando parks, but it’s sure to be a day of fun!

If you have the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, you can redeem Arrival miles for statement credits toward flights (and other travel expenses) of $100 or more. To do this, you simply pay for your flights with your Arrival Plus. When the charge posts on your account, you can redeem points at a rate of 1 cent per mile against your airfare. And you’ll get a 5% mileage rebate on the redemption!

It’s a similar process with the Capital One Venture card. Pay for your flights with the card, then “erase” the charge with your Capital One miles within 90 days of purchase. There’s no minimum redemption amount unless you’re using your Capital One miles to partially pay for a purchase.

Bottom Line

To fly to Orlando, you can redeem miles with airlines like American Airlines, United Airlines, Delta, British Airways, or Southwest. Also remember that you can take a friend or loved one for nearly free when you have the Southwest Companion Pass.

British Airways Avios points can save you a lot of money when you use them for short flights on American Airlines.

You can redeem Barclaycard Arrival miles, Capital One Venture miles, Chase Ultimate Rewards points, or Citi ThankYou points for paid flights.

If you don’t want to redeem miles, consider flying on a budget airline such as Allegiant Air, Frontier Airlines, or Spirit Airlines.

What’s your favorite way to save money on flights to Orlando?

For the latest tips and tricks on traveling big without spending a fortune, please subscribe to the Million Mile Secrets daily email newsletter.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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