Are you tired of spending a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel woes. 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 cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider know-how, you’ll be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to purchase cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight consider the cost. If the flight is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to review the frequent flyer account and determine which airline offers you the best price. It all comes 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 ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards that offer various advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, your spending habits, and what features are essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards excellent for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit or debit card, you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure 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 then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some sweet travel! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from a few of the companies I have experience with:
Take a trip through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you own a Chase credit card, then you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through this portal you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can use a combination of points and cash to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for total price, you 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 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 dollars and points on flights. If you’re only a couple of points away, United provides the option of buying 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 space and complimentary snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to United’s that allows customers to book using either JetBlue dollar or points but not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through it 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! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually around 3%. It might be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the required spending is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up then ask your family members if you can pay them for theirs, and they’ll repay you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you have any loans, consider paying them off with the credit card you have. Just make sure you pay the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any big expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for giving gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you were contemplating to.
There are many methods to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. earn miles or points to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional ways to maximize your rewards
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, make use of your travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. You’ll not only achieve the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles on those expenses.
Use your credit card to pay for your everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum spend to earn rewards is by utilising your credit cards to pay for every day costs. This could include items like groceries, gas or even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full each month so you don’t pay interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange on certain kinds of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review the rewards program of your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a credit card, you might want to transfer that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and then compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance you can use your points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This will allow you to have a wider range of choices and more flexibility when redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This will give you access to a wider variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not offered through your credit card’s rewards program.
Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling with a companion, both of you can earn rewards with your own credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card and make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and make sure you’re using it in the most effective method possible. Through a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.