Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles, which can be used to get discounted or even cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. The miles can be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the price is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to review those frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the best deal. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have in your travel bank for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets of travel hacking? Your first task is to open the credit card that comes that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards with a variety of benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be great for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit card you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be sure to look up the details. Then you can begin to rack up miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued your points balance, you’re ready to redeem them for some sweet travel! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can combine money and points to book your trip. You can even book completely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the entire cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware in case you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on the same flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re only a couple of point short United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points however, not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature where you can combine your points with your family members and earn 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 like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn a credit card bonus. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able to pay your rent using a credit card, do it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually about 3 percent. It may be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another great way to hit the minimum spend is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up, ask your family members to pay for theirs and they can pay you back.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you have any loans take into consideration paying them off with an credit card. Make sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that 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 have confidence in the person you are talking to and they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all your gifts with your credit card. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready for gift giving. Just make sure you’re not paying more than you already planning to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most of your 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
If you’re planning a trip, use the travel credit card to book your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. Not only will you be able to hit the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card reward and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles on the expenditures.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points utilising your credit cards for every day costs. This can include things like gas, groceries or 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
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange on certain kinds of purchases, such as dining or travel. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the benefits of different redemption options. For instance you can use your points to book a flight directly with the airline could offer better return than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or Hotel rewards programme. This will give an access wider selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits that aren’t available through your credit card’s rewards program.
Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has certain benefits that will help you save money on travel costs. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling with a companion, both of you can earn rewards using your own credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card and make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of this program in the most efficient method possible. Utilizing an array of strategies I’ve outlined that you can earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.