Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into miles which can be used to obtain discounted or complimentary flights for your dream 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 all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. The miles can be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The key to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight take a look at the price. If the price is under $300, it’s best to pay cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to review those frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best price. It all comes down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets of travel hacking? First step opening the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are many great credit cards that provide many benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be perfect to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make sure to check for this information. Then it’s all about building miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
After you’ve accrued your points amount, it’s time to use them towards delicious travel! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve worked with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have an Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within the 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 completely on points if you have the balance for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option to pay with dollars or points? Butbe aware that if you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars on one flight. If you’re only a couple of point short United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s, allowing you to book with either JetBlue points or dollars, but not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that lets you pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Be sure to prove you’re really family before trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. But don’t fret, 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 credit card, go for it! Just be prepared to be charged a fee, typically about 3%. It might be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the minimum spend is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your family members if you can pay them for theirs, and they can pay you back.
Pay off a loan
If you have any loans you owe, think about paying them off with your credit card. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Ask your family members to see if they have any major expenses in the near future which you could help pay for. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re celebrating the holidays take into consideration buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready to give gifts. Be sure to avoid paying more than you contemplating to.
There are a lot of ways to get the most from the travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, make use of the travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll achieve the minimum spend to earn your credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover the expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday costs
Another method to reach the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards to pay everyday expenditures. This can include things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Take advantage of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Be sure to review your rewards program on your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on a credit card, think about transferring the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For instance you can use your points to book a ticket directly through the airline may offer better value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a reward program for hotels. This can give the benefit of a wider selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that may not be offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should discover the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will help you save money on travel costs. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else each of you will be able to get rewards on your credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure to track the rewards you earn separately.
The key to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of it in the most efficient method possible. Through 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.