Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your ideal destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can then be used to purchase discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and building out a frequent flyer mile program on a select 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 to book a higher-priced flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to look into your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is to open an account with a sign-up offer. There are many great credit cards with a variety of benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, your spending habits, and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some 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 or debit card, you’ll need to hit the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make sure to look up the details. From there it’s all about building up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, it’s time to cash them in for some delicious vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are a few examples from some of the ones I have experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of a Chase card, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll have access to nearly every airline, and you can use a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your trip. You can even book completely on points if you have the balance for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t have enough points to cover the total 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 flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option of paying with dollars or points? But, be careful that if you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars on one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few points short, United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra legroom and free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars, however, not both. However, JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. But don’t fret, we’ve been through it and are here to share some of our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able to pay your rent using credit card, then do it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually around 3 percent. It may be worth it in the end in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another great way to hit the required spending is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up, ask your family members to pay for theirs and they can repay you.
Repay the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider paying them off with an credit card. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Discuss your family with them and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re doing it.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts using your credit card. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. You can earn miles or points to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of the travel credit card to book your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to hit the minimum spend for your credit card reward, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover those costs.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenses
Another way to hit the minimum spend and earn points is utilising your credit cards for every day expenditures. This could be things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t pay interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Make sure you review the rewards program of your credit card and take advantage of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points wisely
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 example you can use your points to book a ticket directly through the airline may offer better return than using them for a gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you have a wider range of options and greater flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a hotel rewards program. This will give an access wider range of flights, hotels as well as other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, discover the card’s benefits. some perks that could save you money on travel-related expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else and both of you earn rewards with your own credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to keep track of your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to maximizing your travel rewards is to know the rewards program on your credit card and make sure you’re using this program in the most effective way possible. By using a combination of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.