Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s a fun way to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into miles which you can use to get discounted or even cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a bit of imagination and some information, you’ll be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can later be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles for hotel stays and car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and to establish a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight take a look at the price. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to review the frequent flyer account and find out which airline will give you the best deal. It all comes down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is opening the credit card that comes that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards with many features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards great to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit card you’ll need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to get the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be sure to check for the details. Then it’s all about building up miles, and then using them to book your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your points?
After you’ve accrued the points amount, it’s time to use them towards nice travel! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from some of the ones I have experience with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have an Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll have access to virtually every airline and you can use a combination of money and points to book your travel. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the balance for it! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for entire cost, you are able to buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars for flights. If you’re a few points short, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows passengers to book flights using 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 family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Make sure to prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty thrifty and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried because we’ve been there and are here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able pay your rent with credit card, go for it! Just be prepared to be charged a fee, typically at least 3%. It might be worth it in the end if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the minimum spend is to pay for the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they can reimburse you.
Pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about making payments on them with an credit card. Make sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full so you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Talk to your family and look into any big expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they know why you’re doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts using the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and be ready for gift giving. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you already thinking of.
There are a lot of methods to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. earn miles or points to use towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are some additional ways to maximize your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of the travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles to cover these costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is utilising your credit cards to pay every day expenses. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Think about a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance onto the travel credit card which has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles make sure you use the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card, and evaluate the benefits of different redemption options. For instance, using your points to book a ticket directly through the airline may give you a better return than using them for an gift card.
Another tip is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to have a wider range of options and greater flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a reward program for hotels. This can give an access larger selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t available through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, determine the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection and other benefits that can be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with a companion, both of you can earn rewards with your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure you keep track of your rewards separately.
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 ensure that you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient method. By using a combination of the strategies I’ve listed in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and benefit from a wide assortment of travel-related perks.