Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles, which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of imagination and some knowledge, you can fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for 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 most effective method for successful hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the price is under $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise above $500, you’ll want to check the frequent flyer account and see which airline can give you the best deal. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles in your travel bank for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is to open an account with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards that offer various features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, spending habits and what features are essential 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 or debit card, you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be certain to verify this information. From there, it’s all about racking up miles, and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated the points amount, it’s time to cash them in for some sweet vacation! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from a few of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have an Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll have access to almost every airline. You can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your travel. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? Be careful, if you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine points and dollars for flights. If you’re 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 offers a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points but not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to join your points with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty thrifty and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. But don’t fret, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able to pay for your rent with credit card, go for it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually at least 3 percent. It may be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due then ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they will pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about repaying them using an credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and look into any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you contemplating to.
There are plenty of methods to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel and earn miles or points to be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of your travel credit card to book your hotel, flight, rental car, and other travel costs. Not only will you be able to meet the required amount to qualify for a credit card and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on these expenditures.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday costs
Another way to hit the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is by making use of your credit card to pay every day costs. This could be things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accrue interest charges.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points prudently
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points, be sure to use the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For instance, using your points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may offer better value than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to have a wider range of choices and more freedom when it comes to making use of your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or reward program for hotels. This can give the benefit of a larger range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits which are not offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, discover if your credit card offers some perks that could save you money on travel-related expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with a friend and both of you earn rewards with your credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card and make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of this program in the most efficient way possible. Utilizing an array of methods I’ve described that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.