Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into miles which you can use to score discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
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 later be used to purchase discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking take a look at the price. If the flight is less than $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to review your frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the best price. It all comes down to the amount of miles or points in your travel bank for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? First step opening the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards that offer a variety of advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards perfect to use for hacking travel:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit or debit card, you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to look up this information. Then you can begin to rack up miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, it’s time to cash them in for some delicious vacation! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to almost every airline. You can combine the points as well as cash in order to book your travel. You can even book entirely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the total price, you can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.
Are you tired 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 either points or dollars? Be careful that if you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars for flights. If you’re just a few points away, United gives you the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is like United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, but not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to combine your points with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through 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 using a credit card, do it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually around 3%. It might be worth it over the long term if the bonus is high enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future then ask your family members if you can pay them for theirs, and they’ll reimburse you.
Pay off a loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration repaying them using an credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Discuss your family with them and see if they have 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 understand why you’re doing this.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready for gift giving. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already thinking of.
There are a lot of ways to make the most out of your travel credit card. You can accrue points or miles to be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a vacation, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll achieve the minimum spend to earn your credit card reward as well, but you’ll also earn points or miles on the expenditures.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards for daily costs. This could be things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Consider a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles, be sure to use the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For instance, using your points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may offer better value than using them for an gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will let you get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or hotel rewards program. This can give you access to a wider selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks which are not offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, discover whether your credit card has any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with a friend each of you will be able to earn rewards using your own credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to track the rewards you earn 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 using this program in the most efficient method possible. Utilizing all of the methods I’ve described that you can get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.