Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles which you can use to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider knowledge, you can travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. The miles can be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and building out frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking consider the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to review your frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the best price. It all comes down to the number of miles or points in your travel account for each airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards with many benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are excellent for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make certain to verify the details. From there it’s all about building up miles, and using them to book your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your points?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some nice getaway! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Escape through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you have a Chase card, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll have access to virtually every airline and you can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your next trip. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got the balance for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using any credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using either points or dollars? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points you cannot combine dollars and points for the same flight. If you’re just a few points away, United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points but not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can verify that you are a family member before trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried because we’ve been there and are here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able pay your rent with credit card, go for it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically at least 3%. It could be worthwhile in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another great way to hit the required spending is to cover a medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your family members to pay them for theirs, and they will pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower you owe, think about making payments on them with an credit card. Just make sure you pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for taking the initiative.
If you’re celebrating the holidays, consider buying all your gifts with the credit card you have. So you’ll be able to meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready for giving gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you planning to.
There are many ways to make the most of the travel credit card. You can accumulate miles or points that you can spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional ways to maximize your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use you travel credit card to book your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you achieve the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on the expenditures.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum spend in order to accumulate points making use of your credit card for every day costs. This could be things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, such as dining or travel. Be sure to review the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Consider a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring the balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card, and evaluate the benefits of different redemption options. For instance you can use points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may offer better return than using them for an gift card.
Another tip is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will let you enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility when redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or reward program for hotels. This can give you access to a larger selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that aren’t available through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to find out the card’s benefits. any perks that can help you save money on travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with a friend each of you will be able to get rewards on your own credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card, and be sure you keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know the rewards program on your credit card and to ensure you’re using your credit card in the most effective method possible. Through a combination of the methods I’ve described that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.