Are you tired of spending a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting way to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into miles which can be used to get discounted or even cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a bit of imagination and a little bit of insider knowledge, you can 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 discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking take a look at the price. If the price is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. When the flights start getting over $500, you’ll need to look into those frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the best deal. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have in your travel account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is opening an account with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards with various features and benefits. It all depends on your preferred airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are great 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 have to meet the limit of spending minimum in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so make certain to verify this information. Then it’s all about building miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, you’re ready to use them towards sweet vacation! Different credit card providers will have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I have experience with:
Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through the portal, you’ll get access to almost every airline, and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to book your next trip. You can even book completely with points if you’ve the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for entire cost, you are able to book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option to pay with dollars or points? Be careful in case you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points for one flight. No worries though, if you’re just a few points short, United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable travel experience that includes extra legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done 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 to pay your rent with credit card, go for it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It could be worthwhile over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future, ask your family members if you can pay them for theirs, and they can reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you’re a borrower you owe, think about paying them off with the credit card you have. Be sure to pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and be ready to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not paying more than you already planning to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. You can accumulate miles or points that you can use towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of the travel credit card to book your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel expenses. Not only will you be able to hit the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles for the costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is by utilising your credit cards to pay for everyday costs. This could be things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and avail 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 that balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest and simultaneously help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points, be sure to use the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example you can use points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better return than using them for an gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will let you enjoy a greater variety of options and greater freedom when it comes to making use of your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or Hotel rewards programme. This can give the benefit of a greater variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will help you save money on travel expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with a companion and both of you earn rewards with your credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure you keep track of your rewards separately.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and make sure you’re using this program in the most efficient method possible. Through an array of strategies I’ve outlined, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad range of travel perks.