Are you fed up of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to convert credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, that can then be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your ideal destinations. With a little imagination and some knowledge, you can travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. The miles can be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking take a look at the price. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. When the flights start getting over $500, you’ll need to look into those frequent flyer accounts to find out which airline will give you the best price. It all comes down to the number of points or miles in your travel account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is opening an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards with various advantages 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 some credit card options that can be excellent to use for hacking travel:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit card, you’ll need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different rules, so make certain to verify the details. Then you can begin to rack up miles, and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up your points amount, it’s time to cash them in for some nice vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are a few examples from some of the companies I’ve worked with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through this portal you’ll have access to nearly every airline, and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your travel. You can even book entirely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not possess enough points for the entire price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful that if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine points and dollars for the same flight. If you’re a few points away, United also offers the option to purchase additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines that allows you to book with either JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that allows you to pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Make sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. But don’t fret as we’ve done it 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 to pay your rent with a credit card, do it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually at least 3 percent. It might be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due, ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they can reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration repaying them using an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they understand why you’re taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts with the credit card you have. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you contemplating to.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from the travel credit card and earn miles or points to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use your travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. You’ll not only be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles to cover these costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another method to reach the minimum spending requirement in order to accumulate points by making use of your credit card to pay every day costs. This could include items like groceries, gas or even your phone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or bonus points for certain types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles prudently
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles make sure you use them wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance using points to book a ticket directly with the airline might offer better value than using them for a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater freedom when it comes to making use of your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a hotel rewards program. This will give the benefit of a wider selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.
Additionally, try to discover the card’s benefits. any perks that can save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can get rewards on your own credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and ensure that you’re using this program in the most efficient way possible. Utilizing all of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.