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 an exciting way to convert credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles which can be used to get discounted or even free flights to your dream destinations. With a bit of imagination and some information, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to buy discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the flight is less than $300, it’s best to pay in cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. When the flights start getting higher than $500, it’s best to review your frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best deal. It all boils down to the amount of points or miles you have in your travel bank for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening an account with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards with various advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards 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 card, you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make sure to check for the details. From there, it’s all about racking up miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your points?
Once you’ve accumulated your points balance, you’re ready to use them towards nice vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase credit card, then you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll have access to virtually every airline and you can combine points and cash to pay for your trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the balance for it! Sometimes even if you do not possess enough points for the full cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using any credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware, if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine points and dollars for flights. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few points away, United provides the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars however, not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done 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 for your rent using a credit card, do it! Make sure you be charged a fee, typically around 3%. It may be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the required spending is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up Ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will pay you back.
Repay the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider making payments on them with the credit card you have. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they know why you’re doing it.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts using cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to hit that minimum spend and also be ready to give gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most from using your credit or debit card for travel. accrue points or miles to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ways to maximize your rewards:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of your travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel expenses. Not only will you be able to hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover the costs.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenses
Another method to reach the minimum spend and earn points is using your credit card for daily expenditures. This can include things like gas, groceries, and 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
Many travel credit cards offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, like eating out or travelling. Be sure to review the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles, be sure to use the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For example, using points to book a flight directly with the airline might give you a better value 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 allow you to have a wider range of options and greater freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a hotel rewards program. This can give the benefit of a wider selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t available through the rewards program of your credit card.
In addition, you should find out the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with someone else and both of you earn rewards using your own credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to track your rewards in a separate manner.
In the end, the most important thing to do to reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of this program in the most effective way possible. Through all of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.