Are you fed up of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles that can then be used to score discounted or complimentary flights for your ideal destinations. With a bit of imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the flight is less than $300, it’s best to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to look into the frequent flyer account to find out which airline will give you the best price. It all comes down to the amount of points or miles in your travel bank for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is opening a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that provide various benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be 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 have to meet the limit of spending minimum in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to look up this information. From there you can begin to rack miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated the points amount, it’s time to use them towards delicious vacation! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from some of the companies I have experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase card, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to almost every airline, and you can use a combination of money and points to book your trip. You can book your flight entirely with points if you’ve the balance for it! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the entire cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on the same flight. If you’re only a couple of points away, United also offers the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is like United’s that allows customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars, but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you combine your points with your relatives to earn points twice as fast. Make sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty thrifty and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. But don’t fret as we’ve done 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 credit card, go for it! Just be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually around 3 percent. It may be worth it over the long term when the bonus is large enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for a medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up, ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they will reimburse you.
Repay the loan
If you have any loans, consider paying them off with an credit card. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask family for help
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Just make sure you trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and be ready for giving gifts. Be sure to avoid paying more than you already contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most out of the travel credit card. earn miles or points to spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a vacation, make use of your travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll achieve the required amount for your credit card, but you’ll also be earning points or miles for the costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday costs
Another method to reach the minimum spending requirement and earn points is by using your credit card to pay for everyday costs. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you have existing outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance to the travel credit card which has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the worth of various redemption options. For instance you can use points to book a ticket directly with the airline might provide you with a greater return than using them for an gift card.
Another option is to get rewards cards that allow you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you have a wider range of choices and more freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This will give you access to a larger selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that may not be offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should find out the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will help you save money on travel costs. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
If you’re traveling with a companion and both of you get rewards on your credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card, and be sure you keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
The key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient method possible. By using all of the methods I’ve described that you can get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.