Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which you can use to obtain discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The key to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. When the flights start getting higher than $500, it’s best to look into those frequent flyer accounts and find out which airline will give you the most value. All it boils down to is the amount of miles or points in your travel account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? The first step is to open an account with a sign-up bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards with a variety of advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are great 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 have to meet the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make certain to verify this information. Then, it’s all about racking up miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated your points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some nice getaway! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase card, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll get access to nearly every airline and 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 with points if you’ve the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying full price for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying with dollars or points? But, be careful, if you do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars on the same flight. If you’re just a few point short United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s that allows you to book with either JetBlue either dollars or points however, not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you join your points with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum spend for a 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 an important one! If you’re able to pay for your rent using credit card, go for it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually about 3%. It might be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the required spending is to cover an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due Ask your relatives if you could pay their medical bills and they’ll reimburse you.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about paying them off with the credit card you have. Be sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you trust the person and they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts using the credit card you have. This way you can hit that minimum spend and be ready for giving gifts. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you thinking of.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from the travel credit card. You can accrue points or miles to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few additional ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a vacation, make use of the travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card reward as well, but you’ll also earn points or miles on these costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by making use of your credit card to pay for everyday expenses. This can include things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t pay interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review the rewards program of your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will let you pay off your debts without accruing interest and simultaneously help you hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
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 evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For instance, using points to book a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them for a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This allows you to get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility when making use of your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a reward program for hotels. This can give you access to a larger selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not available through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, discover the card’s benefits. some perks that could 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.
Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else, both of you can earn rewards using your credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure you keep track of your rewards separately.
Overall, the key to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re using it in the most efficient method. By using a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards quickly, redeem rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.