Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, that can then be used to score discounted or free flights to your dream destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider knowledge, you can travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The key to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review your frequent flyer accounts to find out which airline will give you the most value. It all boils down to the number of miles or points in your travel bank for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that provide 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 cards excellent to use for hacking travel:
- 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 need to hit the minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be certain to verify this information. Then it’s all about building up miles, and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
After you’ve accrued your points amount, it’s time to use them towards sweet vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve worked with:
Take a trip through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of a Chase card, you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within the portal, you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can use a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the total price, you can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying using dollars or points? But, be careful that if you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars on flights. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of point short United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars, however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue offers a distinct feature that lets you pool your points together with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done it and we’re here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able to pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Just be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually at least 3%. It may be worth it in the end in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach 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 their medical bills and they will reimburse you.
Pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration repaying them using an credit card. Be sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re doing it.
If it’s 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 ready to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were already thinking of.
There are a lot of methods to get the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel. You can accrue points or miles to spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few additional ways to maximize your rewards:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use your travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. Not only will you be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover the costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by making use of your credit card for daily costs. This could include things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, including dining or travel. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of 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 credit card, you might want to transfer that balance to the travel credit card which has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debt without accruing interest and simultaneously help you hit the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the worth of various redemption options. For example, using points to book a ticket directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a hotel rewards program. This gives you access to a greater variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not available through the rewards program on your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine whether your credit card has any perks that can save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling with someone else each of you will be able to earn rewards with your credit card. Be aware that you cannot share the costs 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 making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective method. Through a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for travel experiences that are worth it and take advantage of a broad assortment of travel-related perks.