Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to turn credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, which can be used to get discounted or even free flights to your dream destinations. With a little imagination and some knowledge, you can fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards permit you to use miles for hotel stays and car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight take a look at the price. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to look into those frequent flyer accounts and see which airline can give you the best price. It all comes down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? First step opening a credit card with a sign-up bonus. There are many great credit cards that offer many benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be great to use for hacking 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 get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be certain to verify the details. Then you can begin to rack up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some delicious getaway! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of an Chase card, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll get access to almost every airline. You can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your travel. You can book your flight entirely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using any credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option to pay with dollars or points? Butbe aware in case you don’t have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points away, United also offers the option to purchase additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as fast. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. 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 huge one! If you’re able pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically about 3%. It may be worth it over the long term when the bonus is large enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the required spending is to pay for the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future then ask your family members to pay them for theirs, and they can pay you back.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration paying them off with an credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and see if they have any big expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they understand why you’re doing this.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. So you’ll be able to hit that minimum spend and also be ready for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you thinking of.
There are many ways to make the most from your travel credit card. You can earn miles or points to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ways to maximize your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, make use of you travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. In addition, you’ll be able to hit the minimum amount of spending required to qualify for a credit card bonus, but you’ll also be earning points or miles on those costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay for everyday expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is by using your credit card to pay everyday costs. This could include things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or bonus points for certain types of purchases, like eating out or travelling. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
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 an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles prudently
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles, be sure to use them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For instance, using your points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better return than using them for a gift card.
Another tip is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or reward program for hotels. This will give an access greater variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits that may not be accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
Additionally, try to find out the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with a companion, both of you can get rewards on your credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective way possible. Utilizing all of the strategies I’ve listed that you can earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.