Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles that can then be used to score discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider knowledge, you can fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb higher than $500, it’s best to review those frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all comes down to the amount of miles or points in your travel bank for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? First step to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards with a variety of advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your spending habits, and what features are essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards great for travel hacking:
- 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 hit 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 miles and using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some sweet getaway! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from some of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase credit card, then you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within the portal, you’ll get access to virtually every airline, and you can combine points and cash to pay for your trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the balance for it! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the full cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
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? Butbe aware in case you don’t have enough points, you can’t combine points and dollars for flights. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of points away, United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to United’s that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to join your points with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the required amount to qualify for the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through it and are here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Make sure you be charged a fee, typically about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the end in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the minimum spend is to pay for a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due, ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they will reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about paying them off with your credit card. Just make sure you pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Talk to your family and look into any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts using the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you already contemplating to.
There are many methods to get the most from your travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising your rewards
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, use your travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. You’ll not only be able to meet the minimum spend to earn your credit card as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on the expenses.
Utilize your credit card to pay for all your daily expenses
Another way to meet the minimum spend and earn points is using your credit card to pay every day expenditures. This could 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.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Consider a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your 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 wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For example you can use points to purchase a flight directly with the airline could give you a better value than using them to purchase a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer your 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 able to transfer your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a reward program for hotels. This will give you access to a greater range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits which are not accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, discover whether your credit card has any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can earn rewards using your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t share the costs on the same card and make sure to keep track of your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re using it in the most effective method possible. Through all of the methods I’ve described that you can earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.