Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. 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 cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider knowledge, you can fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. The miles can be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and building out frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight take a look at the price. If the cost is less than $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to review the frequent flyer account to find out which airline will give you the best deal. All it boils down to is the number of miles or points in your travel bank for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that offer many advantages and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards perfect to hack travel
- 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 qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to look up the details. Then, it’s all about racking up miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
Once you’ve accumulated the points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some nice vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, 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 book your trip. You can even book entirely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for total cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying with either points or dollars? Be careful, if you do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars on one flight. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of point short United gives you the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s that allows you to book with either JetBlue dollar or points but not both. However, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that lets you join your points with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried because we’ve been there and are here to share some of our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able pay your rent using credit card, then do it! Just be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually at least 3 percent. It may be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the required spending is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future then ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will reimburse you.
Pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration making payments on them with an credit card. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all your gifts using your credit card. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already thinking of.
There are many ways to get the most of the travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ways to maximize your rewards
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of your travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. Not only will you achieve the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles for those costs.
Use your credit card for everyday expenses
Another way to meet the minimum spend and earn points is by using your credit card to pay for every day expenses. This can include items like groceries, gas and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance onto the travel credit card which has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also assist you in reaching the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and then compare the value of different redemption options. For example using your points to book a flight directly through the airline may provide you with a greater 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 your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will allow you to enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility when making use of your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or reward program for hotels. This can give you access to a wider variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine whether your credit card has some perks that could save you money on travel-related expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with someone else, both of you can earn rewards using your own credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card and make sure you keep track of your rewards separately.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of 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 earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.