Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can 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 obtain discounted or free flights to your ideal destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and rewards for airline miles. The miles can be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for successful hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to look into your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have in your travel account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets of travel hacking? The first step is to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer many advantages and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be perfect 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 or debit card, you’ll need to reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to get the bonus. Every card has different rules, so make certain to verify this information. Then it’s all about building up miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
Once you’ve accumulated your points amount, it’s time to use them towards delicious travel! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase card, you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can combine money and points to book 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 total price, you can 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 your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying with dollars or points? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points for the same flight. If you’re just a few points away, United gives you the option of buying additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue dollar or points but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you join your points 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 and my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty frugal and it can be challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through 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 credit card, then do it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another excellent way to meet the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future Ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they will pay you back.
Pay off a loan
If you have any loans you owe, think about making payments on them with your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you already thinking of.
There are a lot of methods to get the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel and earn miles or points to use towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more suggestions for maximising the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a vacation, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. You’ll not only achieve the minimum spend for your credit card reward, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover these costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum spending requirement in order to accumulate points by making use of your credit card to pay for every day expenditures. This could include things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you are currently in outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will let you pay off your debt without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance using your points to book a flight directly with the airline might offer better value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility when making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or reward program for hotels. This will give you access to a wider range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks that aren’t available through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, discover whether your credit card has certain benefits that will help you save money on travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with someone else, both of you can earn rewards with your credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of 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 understand the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective method possible. Through an array of methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.