Are you tired of paying an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s a fun way to convert bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles that can then be used to score discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a little creativity and some insider information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. The miles can be used to pay for discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also let you redeem miles for hotel stays and car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and building out frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s best to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to review those frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the most value. It all comes down to the number of points or miles you have in your travel bank for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to travel hacking? First step opening the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide many benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, spending habits and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be 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 card, you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so be certain to verify the details. From there, it’s all about racking up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, it’s time to cash them in for some delicious vacation! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points, but here are some examples from a few of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase card, you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll get access to virtually every airline. You can make use of a combination of points and cash to book your next trip. You can even book entirely on points if you have the balance for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the full cost, you are able to buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using any credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware, if you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on the same flight. If you’re only a couple of points away, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. However, JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. Don’t worry as we’ve done it and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able to pay for your rent using credit card, then do it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It may be worth it in the end if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to pay for a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up Ask your family members to pay their medical bills and they can reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower you owe, think about 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 accrue additional debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and see if they have any big expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts using the credit card you have. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel and earn miles or points to spend on airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more ways to maximize the rewards you earn:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll achieve the minimum spend for your credit card reward and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles on the costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay for everyday costs
Another method to reach the minimum spend and earn points is making use of your credit card for everyday expenditures. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer bonus points or miles for certain types of purchases, like eating out or travelling. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a credit card, consider transferring that balance to a travel credit card with an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For instance, using your points to purchase a flight directly with the airline could provide you with a greater 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 choices and more flexibility when redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This can give an access larger range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks that aren’t available through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, find out whether your credit card has certain benefits that will reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with a companion, both of you can get rewards on your own credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card, and be sure you keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and ensure that you’re making use of it in the most effective way possible. Utilizing all of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and take advantage of a broad assortment of travel-related perks.