Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your ideal destinations. With a little bit of imagination and a little bit of insider information, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to look into the frequent flyer account to see which airline can give you the most value. It all boils down to the amount of points or miles in your travel account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is opening an account with a sign-up bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that provide 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 card options that can be perfect to use for hacking travel:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit or debit 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 rules, so be sure to look up this information. Then it’s all about building miles and using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some delicious getaway! Different credit card providers will have different methods of redeeming your points, but here are a few examples from some of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase cards, you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll have access to nearly every airline. You can make use of a combination of money and points to book your trip. You can even book completely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for total cost, you are able to purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with any credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying with dollars or points? But, be careful that if you don’t have enough points you cannot combine dollars and points for the same flight. If you’re just a few points away, United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to United’s that allows you to book with either JetBlue points or dollars, but 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. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and we’re here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able to pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually around 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the minimum spend 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 will repay you.
Repay a loan
If you have any loans take into consideration paying them off with your credit card. Be sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they know why you’re doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all your gifts using your credit card. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and also be prepared for giving gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were thinking of.
There are plenty of ways to get the most from your travel credit card and accrue points or miles to spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of you travel credit card to book your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel expenses. Not only will you achieve the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card reward as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles for the expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another method to reach the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by using your credit card for daily expenditures. This can include things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a credit card, think about transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the worth of various redemption options. For instance, using your points to book a ticket directly with the airline could offer better value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you have a wider range of choices and more flexibility in making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a reward program for hotels. This gives the benefit of a wider range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks that may not be offered through your credit card’s rewards program.
Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has any perks that can save you money on travel-related costs. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with a companion and both of you earn rewards with your own credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of this program in the most effective way possible. Through an array of strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.