Are you tired of spending a fortune on airfare? Well, good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, which can be used to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your dream destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider knowledge, you can fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and car rental offers.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and establishing frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight consider the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise above $500, you’ll want to check the frequent flyer account to see which airline can give you the most value. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have in your travel bank for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is opening a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards with a variety of features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards excellent to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit card you’ll need to hit the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be certain to verify this information. Then you can begin to rack up miles and using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, it’s time to use them towards nice vacation! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from some of the providers I have experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline and you can make use of a combination of money and points to book your trip. You can book your flight entirely with points if you’ve the balance for it! Sometimes even if you do not possess enough points for the total price, you can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option to pay with dollars or points? But, be careful that if you don’t have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars on the same flight. If you’re a few point short United also offers the option of buying additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows you to book with either JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. However, JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you join your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. But don’t fret, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share some of our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able to pay your rent using credit card, then do it! Make sure you pay a cost, which is usually about 3%. It might be worth it in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another great way to hit the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future Ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they’ll pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration repaying them using the credit card you have. Be sure to pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future which you could help pay for. Just make sure you have confidence in the person you are talking to and they understand why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already thinking of.
There are a lot of ways to make the most from using your credit or debit card for travel and earn miles or points to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional ways to maximize the rewards you earn:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, use you travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. You’ll not only be able to hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card reward, however, you’ll also earn points or miles for those expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay for everyday costs
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending and earn points is making use of your credit card to pay every day expenses. This can include items like groceries, gas and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t pay interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Be sure to review the rewards program of your credit card and take advantage of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance onto a travel credit card with an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and then compare the worth of various redemption options. For example you can use points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility when redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This will give you access to a larger range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits that aren’t available through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, find out whether your credit card has any perks that can save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with a friend each of you will be able to get rewards on your credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card and make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of it in the most efficient method possible. Utilizing an array of strategies I’ve outlined, you’ll be able to earn rewards fast, exchange them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.