Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s a fun way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles, which can be used to score discounted or free flights to your desired destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles for hotel stays and car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight consider the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review the frequent flyer account and see which airline can give you the most value. It all boils down to the amount of miles or points in your travel account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is opening a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide various features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most important 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 card you’ll need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to check for the details. From there, it’s all about racking miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated your points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some delicious getaway! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are a few examples from some of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through the portal, you’ll have 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 enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using any credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points for one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re only a couple of point short United provides the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars but not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. 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 companion Becca, you’re probably pretty economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done it and we’re here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able to pay your rent using a credit card, do it! Make sure you pay a cost, which is usually around 3%. It might be worth it in the end if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up then ask your family members to pay their medical bills and they’ll pay you back.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you have any loans take into consideration making payments on them with the credit card you have. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Ask your family members to look into any major expenses in the near future 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 of your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready for giving gifts. Be sure to avoid paying more than you planning to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel and accumulate miles or points that you can use towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more suggestions for maximising your rewards
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to qualify for a credit card and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on the expenditures.
Use your credit card for everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points making use of your credit card to pay for everyday expenses. This can include things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. 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’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the worth of various redemption options. For example, using your points to book a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them for 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 allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or reward program for hotels. This can give an access larger variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t offered through your credit card’s rewards program.
Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has some perks that could help you save money on travel expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection and other benefits that are invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with a companion, both of you can earn rewards with your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
The key to maximizing your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re using this program in the most effective method possible. Through a combination of the methods I’ve described 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.