Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles, which you can use to score discounted or complimentary flights for your ideal destinations. With a little bit of imagination and some knowledge, you can 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 buy cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight consider the cost. If the flight 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 over $500, you’ll need to check the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the most value. It all comes down to the number of miles or points you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? The first step is to open a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards with various features and benefits. 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 that are excellent 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 need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so make sure to look up the details. From there it’s all about building up miles, and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your goals?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, you’re ready to use them towards nice getaway! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you have an Chase credit card, then you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll get access to virtually every airline. You can make use of a combination of money and points to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full cost, you are able to buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? 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 that if you don’t have enough points, you can’t combine points and dollars for one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few points away, United also offers the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to United’s that allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, but not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can join your points with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and are here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Just be prepared to be charged a fee, typically around 3%. It may be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future Ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they will repay you.
Repay the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration paying them off with an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any major expenses in the near future which you could help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re doing this.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be ready to give gifts. Be sure to avoid paying more than you already thinking of.
There are plenty of ways to make the most out of your travel credit card and accumulate miles or points that you can use towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising the rewards you earn:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use you travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. You’ll not only be able to meet the minimum spend for your credit card as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover these costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is by using your credit card to pay daily expenses. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, like eating out or travelling. Check out your credit card’s rewards program and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance, using your points to purchase a flight directly with the airline could offer better value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another option is to get rewards cards that allow you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will allow you to have a wider range of options and greater flexibility in making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or Hotel rewards programme. This can give an access greater selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, find out the card’s benefits. any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with someone else each of you will be able to earn rewards using your own credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards in a separate manner.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re using this program in the most efficient way possible. Utilizing all of the strategies I’ve listed in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.