Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking could 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 which you can use to obtain discounted or free flights to your ideal destinations. With a bit of imagination and some information, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can later be used to buy cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in travel hacking is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and to establish frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight take a look at the price. If the cost is under $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to look into the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the most value. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles you have in your travel bank for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? First step to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are many great credit cards that provide a variety of advantages 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 cards that are perfect to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit card, you’ll need to reach the minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so make sure to look up this information. From there it’s all about building up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, you’re ready to redeem them for some delicious vacation! Different credit card companies will have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you have a Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within the portal, you’ll have access to almost every airline. You can make use of a combination of money and points to book your next trip. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for entire price, you can purchase flights through 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 realize that when booking directly through United you can choose the option of paying with dollars or points? Be careful in case you do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars for one flight. If you’re a few point short United also offers the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable travel experience that includes extra space and complimentary snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points however, not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty frugal and it can be challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and are here to share some of our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able pay your rent with a credit card, do it! Make sure you be charged a fee, typically at least 3%. It could be worthwhile in the long run when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another great way to hit the required spending is to cover an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up Ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they’ll reimburse you.
Repay a loan
If you have any loans you owe, think about paying them off with your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Talk to your family and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and also be ready to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to make the most out of your travel credit card and earn miles or points to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, make use of the travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. You’ll not only be able to meet the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card bonus, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover those costs.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenses
Another way to meet the minimum spend in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards to pay everyday costs. This could be things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t pay interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a credit card, consider transferring that balance to a travel credit card with an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points, be sure to use the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For instance using points to book a flight directly with the airline might offer better 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 rewards to different loyalty program. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility when making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a hotel rewards program. This will give the benefit of a wider range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks that may not be offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has any perks that can help you save money on travel costs. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with a friend each of you will be able to earn rewards using your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of 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 on your credit card and make sure you’re making use of this program in the most effective method. Through a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and benefit from a wide assortment of travel-related perks.