Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which you can use to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little imagination and some information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and building out frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb higher than $500, it’s best to review your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the number of miles or points you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets of travel hacking? Your first task is opening the credit card that comes that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards with a variety of benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, spending habits and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are perfect to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit or debit card, you’ll need to hit the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so make sure to look up the details. From there you can begin to rack up miles and using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some sweet vacation! Different credit card companies will offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from some of the companies I have experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you have an Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll have access to nearly every airline. You can combine points and cash to book your next 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 total cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying with either points or dollars? Be careful in case you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points on the same flight. If you’re a few points short, United provides the option of buying additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing you to book with either JetBlue points or dollars but not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that allows you to pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried because we’ve been there and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able pay your rent using a credit card, do it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It could be worthwhile in the end if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses due Ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they’ll reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about paying them off with an credit card. Be sure to pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays, consider buying all your gifts with the credit card you have. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you planning to.
There are many ways to get the most from your travel credit card. earn miles or points to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising your rewards
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
If you’re planning a vacation, make use of you travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card bonus, but you’ll also earn points or miles to cover those expenses.
Utilize your credit card to pay for all your daily costs
Another way to meet the minimum spend to earn rewards is utilising your credit cards to pay everyday costs. This could include items like groceries, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t pay interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or bonus points for certain types of purchases, like dining or travel. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and make use of any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
Consider a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and then compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance using your points to book a ticket directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them for an gift card.
Another tip is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to have a wider range of choices and more freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a reward program for hotels. This can give you access to a wider selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not available through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, find out if your credit card offers some perks that could help you save money on travel expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a companion and both of you get rewards on your credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective way possible. Utilizing a combination of the methods I’ve described that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.