Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into miles that can then be used to get discounted or even free flights to your desired destinations. With a little creativity and some insider information, you’ll 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 as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to look into the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all comes down to the number of miles or points in your travel bank for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is opening a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards with various features and benefits. It all depends on your preferred airline, your spending habits, and what features are essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be 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 reach the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be certain to verify the details. Then, it’s all about racking miles and using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some sweet getaway! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the companies I have experience with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have an Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through it, you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can combine money and points to book 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 with the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware that if you do not have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points on the same flight. If you’re only a couple of points away, United provides the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. However, JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to join your points with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Be sure to prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for the credit card bonus. Don’t worry, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share our tricks and tips.
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 fee, usually around 3%. It may be worth it over the long term if the bonus is high enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up then ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they’ll repay you.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower, consider paying them off with the credit card you have. Be sure to pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and see if they have any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Just make sure you trust the person and they are aware of the reason for taking the initiative.
If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can hit that minimum spend and also be ready for gift giving. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already planning to.
There are many ways to get the most out of the travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some 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 you travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you be able to hit the minimum spend for your credit card, but you’ll also be earning points or miles on the expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is utilising your credit cards for every day expenses. This could include things like food, gas or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, like dining or travel. Be sure to review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a credit card, consider transferring that balance onto an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will let you pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points wisely
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points, be sure to use them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example you can use points to book a ticket directly with the airline might offer better return than using them for an gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or hotel rewards program. This can give the benefit of a greater selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has some perks that could help you save money on travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with someone else each of you will be able to earn rewards using your credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of your rewards 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 your credit card in the most efficient way possible. Through an array of strategies I’ve outlined that you can earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.