Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles which can be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider knowledge, you can travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. The miles can be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or car rental offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus 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 best to pay in cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review those frequent flyer accounts to find out which airline will give you the best deal. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles you have in your travel account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover 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 that offer many features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are great to use for hacking 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 minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make certain to verify this information. Then it’s all about building up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
After you’ve accrued your points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some delicious travel! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll have access to almost every airline. You can use a combination of points and cash to book your next trip. You can even book completely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the full cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying full price for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United you can choose the option to pay with either points or dollars? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points for the same flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few points away, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows customers to book using either JetBlue dollar or points but not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that lets you 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.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. But don’t fret as we’ve done it and are here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able to pay your rent with a credit card, do it! Just be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually at least 3%. It could be worthwhile in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future then ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they will repay you.
Repay the loan
If you have any loans take into consideration repaying them using your credit card. Just make sure you pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Ask your family members to see if they have any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Make sure that you are 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 take into consideration buying all your gifts with the credit card you have. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are many methods to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. accrue points or miles to use towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing your rewards
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use you travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. Not only will you achieve the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card bonus as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on those expenditures.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenses
Another way to meet the minimum spend and earn points is by utilising your credit cards to pay everyday costs. This could include things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, such as dining or travel. Be sure to review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer that balance to a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also assist you in reaching the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the benefits of different redemption options. For instance, using your points to book a ticket directly with the airline could offer better value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to have a wider range of choices and more flexibility in making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This will give an access larger variety of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks which are not available through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should find out if your credit card offers any perks that can reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend and both of you earn rewards using your credit card. Just remember that you can’t share the costs on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
The key to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of it in the most efficient method possible. By using a combination of the methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.