Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which can be used to obtain discounted or free flights to your dream destinations. With a little imagination and some knowledge, you can be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to review your frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the most value. It all boils down to the number of miles or points in your travel account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? The first step is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards with a variety of benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards excellent to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit or debit card, you’ll need to hit the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different guidelines, so make sure to look up the details. From there, it’s all about racking up miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your goals?
After you’ve accrued your points balance, you’re ready to use them towards nice vacation! Different credit card companies will have different methods of redeeming your rewards, here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve worked with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have a Chase cards, you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through the portal, you’ll have access to almost every airline. You can make use of a combination of money and points to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the full cost, you are able to book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars for flights. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of points short, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s, allowing you to book with either JetBlue points or dollars but not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to combine your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. Don’t worry, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able to pay your rent using credit card, then do it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically around 3 percent. It may be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to cover the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they can reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration repaying them using the credit card you have. Make sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and look into any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. So you’ll be able to meet the minimum spending limit and also be prepared for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you contemplating to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. accumulate miles or points that you can spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. 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, make use of the travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. You’ll not only achieve the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card reward and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles for these costs.
Use your credit card for all your daily costs
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending and earn points is by using your credit card for everyday costs. This could be things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accrue interest charges.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points for certain types of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance to a travel credit card with an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles, be sure to use them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the worth of various redemption options. For example you can use your points to book a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater return than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This allows you to have a wider range of options and greater flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This can give you access to a larger selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits that aren’t offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
In addition, you should find out whether your credit card has certain benefits that will help you save money on 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 someone else and both of you earn rewards using your own credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of your rewards separately.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re using it in the most effective way possible. Utilizing a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.