Are you fed up of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can later be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking consider the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb higher than $500, it’s best to review your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is opening an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that provide many advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be excellent for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit or debit card, you’ll need to hit the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to look up the details. From there it’s all about building up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your goals?
After you’ve accrued your points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some delicious travel! Different credit card companies will have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the providers 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 via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll get access to virtually every airline and you can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your trip. You can even book completely with points if you’ve the balance for it! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the entire price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars on flights. If you’re only a couple of points short, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points, however, not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can pool your points together with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through it and are here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able to pay your rent with a credit card, do it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically at least 3%. It might be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills due Ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they can repay you.
Repay the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about repaying them using an credit card. Be sure to pay off the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t end up with additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future which you could help pay for. Just make sure you trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing this.
If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all of your gifts with the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Be sure to avoid spending more than you thinking of.
There are many methods to get the most out of the travel credit card. You can earn miles or points to spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ways to maximize your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you achieve the required amount for your credit card reward, but you’ll also earn points or miles for these costs.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is by using your credit card to pay for every day expenditures. This can include things like gas, groceries, 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
Many travel credit cards offer bonus points or miles on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance to a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles prudently
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles, be sure to use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example, using your points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them for a gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility when redeeming 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 an access greater range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks that aren’t offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to discover the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a companion each of you will be able to get rewards on your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards separately.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know the rewards program on your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective method possible. Utilizing an array of methods I’ve described that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and take advantage of a broad assortment of travel-related perks.