Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into miles which can be used to score discounted or free flights to your dream destinations. With a bit of imagination and a little bit of insider information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles for hotel stays and rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and building out a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking consider the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to check your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the most value. It all comes down to the number of points or miles in your travel bank for each airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets of travel hacking? First step to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer many advantages and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few 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 card you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be sure to look up this information. From there you can begin to rack up miles, and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your goals?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, you’re ready to redeem them for some sweet travel! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve worked with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of an Chase cards, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through it, you’ll have access to nearly every airline, and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to book your trip. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the entire cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars for flights. No worries though, if you’re just a few point short United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable travel experience that includes extra legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to that of United Airlines that allows customers to book using either JetBlue dollar or points but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you combine your points with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Make sure to prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through it and are 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! Make sure you pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It might be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another great way to hit the required spending is to pay for the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up Ask your family members to pay for theirs and they can pay you back.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you have any loans take into consideration paying them off with an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any big expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they understand why you’re doing this.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already contemplating to.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from the travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few additional ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a vacation, make use of you travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to hit the minimum spend for your credit card as well, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover those expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenditures
Another method to reach the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by using your credit card to pay every day expenses. This could be items like groceries, gas, and even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles for certain types of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Make sure you review the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on a credit card, consider transferring the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For instance using points to book a flight directly through the airline may offer better value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will let you have a wider range of choices and more flexibility when making use of your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a reward program for hotels. This will give the benefit of a greater range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, discover the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will reduce your travel costs. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling 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, and be sure to track the rewards you earn separately.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program on your credit card and ensure that you’re using your credit card in the most efficient way possible. By using a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.