Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting way to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles which can be used to obtain discounted or complimentary flights for your dream destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider information, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for successful hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and building out a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the flight is less than $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 review those frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all comes down to the amount of points or miles in your travel bank for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning 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 benefits and features. It is all dependent on the 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 great to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit card you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so be sure to look up the details. Then it’s all about building miles and using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued your points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some delicious travel! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are a few examples from some of the providers I have experience with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase card, you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline. You can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to book your trip. You can even book completely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the entire price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful, if you do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars on one flight. If you’re just a few point short United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows customers to book using either JetBlue dollar or points but not both. However, JetBlue has a unique feature where you can pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as fast. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before 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 economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. 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 an important one! If you’re able to pay for your rent with a credit card, do it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It might be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up Ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they can reimburse you.
Repay the loan
If you’re a borrower you owe, think about making payments on them with an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card completely so that you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Just make sure you trust the person and they are aware of the reason for taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready to give gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you planning to.
There are many methods to get the most of your travel credit card. accrue points or miles to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use you travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to hit the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover the expenses.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum spend and earn points is using your credit card for everyday expenses. This could include things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles for certain types of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a 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 allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles make sure you use them wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance you can use points to book a ticket directly with the airline could provide you with a greater return than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility in making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a Hotel rewards programme. This gives you access to a larger range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits that may not be offered through your credit card’s rewards program.
In addition, you should discover the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will reduce your travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that could be invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with a companion each of you will be able to earn rewards using your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card and make sure to track the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know the rewards program on your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective way possible. By using a combination of the strategies I’ve listed in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad range of travel perks.