Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to convert credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles which can be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little imagination and some know-how, you’ll be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and rewards for airline miles. The miles can be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the flight is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to look into the frequent flyer account and determine which airline offers you the best price. It all comes down to the amount of points or miles in your travel account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets of travel hacking? The first step is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards with many advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are excellent 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 spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so make certain to verify this information. Then it’s all about building up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your points?
Now that you’ve built up your points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some nice travel! Different credit card companies will have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are some examples from some of the companies I’ve worked with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have an Chase credit card, then you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to nearly every airline. You can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your next trip. You can book your flight entirely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full 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 tired of paying full price for your flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying with dollars or points? Be careful in case you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on one flight. No worries though, if you’re just a few points short, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows you to book with either JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that lets you join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Be 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 anything like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done it and are 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 with credit card, then do it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually at least 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up, ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they’ll repay you.
Pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration making payments on them with an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for doing this.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and also be prepared for giving gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you already contemplating to.
There are many methods to get the most from using your credit or debit card for travel. accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, use the travel credit card to book your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. Not only will you be able to meet the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover the expenditures.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday expenditures
Another method to reach the minimum spend to earn rewards is using your credit card to pay everyday costs. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full each month so 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, including eating out or travelling. Check out your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you are currently in 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 transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles, be sure to use them wisely. 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 could offer better return than using them for an gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or reward program for hotels. This can give an access wider variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits that aren’t accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to discover if your credit card offers any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can earn rewards with your credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card and make sure to track your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of 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 all of the strategies I’ve listed that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.