Are you tired of paying an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting way to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles which you can use to get discounted or even cheap flights from your ideal destinations. With a little bit of imagination and some knowledge, you can be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can later be used to purchase cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the cost is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. When the flights start getting higher than $500, it’s best to look into your frequent flyer accounts to find out which airline will give you the most value. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that offer a variety of advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be excellent 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 reach the limit of spending minimum in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make sure to look up the details. From there you can begin to rack 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, you’re ready to use them towards delicious getaway! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the companies I have experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll have access to nearly every airline. You can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to book your trip. You can even book entirely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the total price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying with either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine points and dollars for one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few points away, United gives you the option of buying additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s which allows you to book with either JetBlue either dollars or points but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature where you can combine your points with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to 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 pretty economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. Don’t worry as we’ve done it and are here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able pay your rent using a credit card, do it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile over the long term if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the minimum spend is to cover an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future Ask your family members to pay for theirs and they’ll pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration paying them off with your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and look into 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 doing this.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with your credit card. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you already thinking of.
There are many methods to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel and accumulate miles or points that you can spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising the rewards you earn:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
If you’re planning a vacation, make use of the travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to qualify for a credit card reward, but you’ll also be earning points or miles on these expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily costs
Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement and earn points is by making use of your credit card to pay every day costs. This could be items like groceries, gas or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Be sure to review the rewards program of your credit card and make use of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Review the rewards program for your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example using your points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them for an gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a reward program for hotels. This will give an access larger variety of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that may not be available through your credit card’s rewards program.
In addition, you should determine the card’s benefits. some perks that could reduce your travel costs. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that can be very beneficial when traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a companion, both of you can get rewards on your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t share the costs on the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards separately.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient way possible. Through an array of methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.