Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to turn credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into miles that can then be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your ideal 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 the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The key to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the flight is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to look into those frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles in your travel account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets of travel hacking? First step opening a credit card with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide many benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards perfect for travel hacking:
- 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 hit the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to look up the details. From there, it’s all about racking up miles, and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
After you’ve accrued the points amount, it’s time to use them towards delicious travel! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your points, but here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase credit card, then you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll have access to nearly every airline. You can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your trip. You can book your flight entirely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the entire cost, you are able to purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flights? 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 cannot combine points and dollars for flights. No worries though, if you’re just a few points away, United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points but not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can combine your points with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Be sure to prove you’re really family before trying to hack the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn a credit card bonus. But don’t fret as we’ve done it and we’re 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! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually about 3%. It could be worthwhile in the end if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses due then ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will repay you.
Make a payment to pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower you owe, think about making payments on them with your credit card. Be sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they understand why you’re doing it.
If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts using your credit card. 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 were planning to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most of your travel credit card. You can accrue points or miles to spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more ways to maximize the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a vacation, make use of you travel credit card to pay for 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 for your credit card bonus as well, but you’ll also earn points or miles for those expenditures.
Use your credit card for everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum spend and earn points is making use of your credit card for everyday expenses. This could be things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, including dining or travel. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance onto an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For instance, using your points to book a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them to purchase a gift card.
Another option is to get rewards cards that allow you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will allow you to have a wider range of options and greater freedom when it comes to making use of your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This gives the benefit of a greater variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.
In addition, you should determine whether your credit card has some perks that could 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 are very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend each of you will be able to earn rewards with your credit card. Make sure you don’t divide the cost with 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 reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program on your credit card and make sure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective method possible. Utilizing all of the methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.