Are you fed up of spending an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which you can use to obtain discounted or free flights to your dream destinations. With a little bit of imagination and some knowledge, you can be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards will also allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight consider the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb higher than $500, it’s best to review those frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best price. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide various benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards excellent to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit card you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to look up the details. Then it’s all about building up miles, and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your goals?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, it’s time to use them towards delicious getaway! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Escape through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of a Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll get access to nearly every airline, and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to book your trip. You can book your flight entirely with points if you’ve the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option to pay with dollars or points? But, be careful in case you don’t have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars for one flight. No worries though, if you’re a few point short United also offers the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points but not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for the credit card bonus. But don’t fret as we’ve done it and are here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It might be worth it in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to pay for the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills due, ask your family members to pay them for theirs, and they’ll repay you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you have any loans take into consideration making payments on them with the credit card you have. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family for help
Talk to your family and look into any major expenses in the near future which you could 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 it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all your gifts with the credit card you have. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most from using your credit or debit card for travel. You can earn miles or points to use towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing the rewards you earn:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use you travel credit card to book your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. You’ll not only achieve the minimum amount of spending required to qualify for a credit card bonus, but you’ll also earn points or miles for those expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday costs
Another method to reach the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards to pay every day expenses. This can include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full each month so 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, like eating out or travelling. Check out your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
Think about 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 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 spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
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 worth of various redemption options. For example, using your points to book a ticket directly with the airline could offer better value than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This will give the benefit of a greater variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, determine whether your credit card has certain benefits that will reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend each of you will be able to earn rewards with your credit card. Be aware that you cannot split the cost on the same card, and be sure to track the rewards you earn separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re using this program in the most efficient method. By using a combination of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide assortment of travel-related perks.