Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, that can then be used to score discounted or free flights to your desired destinations. With a little bit of imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or car rental offers.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight take a look at the price. 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. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review those frequent flyer accounts and see which airline can give you the best deal. It all boils down to the amount of points or miles in your travel bank for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets of travel hacking? First step opening the credit card that comes that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that provide a variety of benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be perfect 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 hit the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make certain to verify the details. From there, it’s all about racking up miles, and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some delicious getaway! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within the portal, you’ll get access to almost every airline, and you can make use of a combination of points and cash to book your trip. You can book your flight entirely using points if you’ve got the balance for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option to pay with either points or dollars? Be careful that if you don’t have enough points, you can’t combine points and dollars for flights. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few points away, United provides the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars but not both. However, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that lets you pool your points together 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.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. Don’t worry as we’ve done it and are here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able to pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually about 3 percent. It may be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the spending limit is to pay for the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up Ask your relatives if you could pay their medical bills and they can reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration making payments on them with your credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any big expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you thinking of.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from your travel credit card. You can accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few more ways to maximize your rewards:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. In addition, you’ll achieve the required amount for your credit card bonus as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover the costs.
Use your credit card for everyday expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is using your credit card to pay for daily expenses. This could be things like food, gas or even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and make use of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on 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 let you pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles prudently
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance using your points to purchase 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 rewards to different loyalty program. This will allow you to enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or Hotel rewards programme. This can give an access larger selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, discover if your credit card offers any perks that can save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be invaluable when you travel.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a friend and both of you earn rewards with your credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card and make sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program on your credit card and make sure you’re using this program in the most efficient method possible. By using all 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 take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.