Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your ideal destinations. With a little creativity and some insider information, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the flight is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to review the frequent flyer account to find out which airline will give you the most value. It all boils down to the amount of miles or points in your travel bank for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? First step opening a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that offer many benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your spending habits, and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are great 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 need to reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be sure to look up this information. From there it’s all about building up miles, and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued your points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some sweet travel! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are some examples from a few of the ones I’ve worked with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you own an Chase card, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll have access to virtually every airline, and you can use a combination of points and cash to pay for your travel. You can even book completely with points if you’ve the balance for it! 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 any credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option to pay with either points or dollars? But, be careful that if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine points and dollars on one flight. No worries though, if you’re just a few points short, United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers a comfortable and enjoyable travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. However, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. 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 anything like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. But don’t fret because we’ve been there 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 your rent using a credit card, do it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually around 3 percent. It might be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another great way to hit the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future, ask your family members to pay their medical bills and they can pay you back.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you have any loans take into consideration paying them off with your credit card. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full so you don’t end up with additional debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and see if they have any major expenses in the near future that you can contribute for. Just make sure you trust the person and they know why you’re doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays take into consideration buying all of your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already thinking of.
There are plenty of ways to get the most out of your travel credit card. accrue points or miles to use towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few additional ways to maximize your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a vacation, make use of the travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. You’ll not only be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card, but you’ll also earn points or miles on these expenditures.
Use your credit card to pay for your everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is making use of your credit card to pay every day expenses. This can include items like groceries, gas or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Take advantage of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance to a travel credit card with an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles make sure you use the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance you can use points to book a ticket directly with the airline could give you a better value than using them for an gift card.
Another tip is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility in making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This can give the benefit of a larger variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not available through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, determine if your credit card offers any perks that can reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a companion each of you will be able to earn rewards using your credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know the rewards program on your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of this program in the most efficient method. Through an array of methods I’ve described that you can earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.