Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles which can be used to score discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little bit of imagination and some know-how, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to buy discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking take a look at the price. If the cost is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to check those frequent flyer accounts to find out which airline will give you the best price. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles you have in your travel bank for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets of travel hacking? First step to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are many great credit cards that offer various features and benefits. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards excellent for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit card you’ll need to reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make sure to check for this information. From there you can begin to rack up miles, and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated your points amount, it’s time to use them towards sweet travel! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from some of the providers I have experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
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 the portal, you’ll have access to nearly every airline, and you can combine money and points to book your travel. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full price, you can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with any credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying with dollars or points? Be careful, if you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on one flight. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of points short, United provides the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is like United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to combine your points with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Just make sure you can verify that you are a family member before trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. But don’t fret as we’ve done it and we’re here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able to pay your rent using credit card, then do it! Just be prepared to be charged a fee, typically about 3%. It could be worthwhile in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they will pay you back.
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 the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with your credit card. This way you can hit that minimum spend and be ready for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most of the travel credit card. You can accrue points or miles to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing your rewards
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use the travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. Not only will you be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card reward, but you’ll also be earning points or miles for those expenditures.
Make use of your credit card to pay for everyday expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum spending requirement in order to accumulate points making use of your credit card to pay everyday expenditures. This could include things like food, gas, and even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accrue interest charges.
Benefit from bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or bonus points for certain types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Be sure to review the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For instance using points to book a flight directly with the airline could provide you with a greater value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you enjoy a greater variety of choices and more freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a Hotel rewards programme. This will give you access to a greater variety of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, find out the card’s benefits. some perks that could reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can earn rewards with your own credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card and make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to maximizing your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re using your credit card in the most efficient way possible. By using all of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.