Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting way to turn credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which you can use to obtain discounted or free flights to your desired destinations. With a bit of imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll 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 later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and building out frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to look into the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer various advantages and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be perfect to hack travel
- 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 reach the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make sure to look up this information. Then, it’s all about racking miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your points?
Now that you’ve built up your points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some nice travel! Different credit card providers will have different methods of redeeming your points, but here are a few examples from some of the providers I’ve worked with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll have access to virtually every airline, and you can combine points and cash to book your trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not possess enough points for the full cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using any credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost 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? Butbe aware in case you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine dollars and points on one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re only a couple of 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 passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points but not both. But, JetBlue offers a distinct feature where you can combine your points with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able to pay for your rent with credit card, go for it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually around 3%. It might be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to cover a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up Ask your family members to pay their medical bills and they’ll reimburse you.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider making payments on them with the credit card you have. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Discuss your family with them and see if they have any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they know why you’re doing it.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for giving gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel and earn miles or points to be used towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, make use of your travel credit card to book your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. Not only will you be able to hit the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card reward and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on the expenses.
Use your credit card for everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending and earn points is making use of your credit card for every day costs. This could include things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles on certain kinds of purchases, like dining or travel. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance onto a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points make sure you use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and then compare the value of different redemption options. For instance, using 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 rewards cards that allow you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you get a wider selection of options and greater freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a reward program for hotels. This will give an access greater selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, determine the card’s benefits. some perks that could reduce your travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else, both of you can get rewards on your credit card. Be aware that you cannot split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to keep track of your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program on your credit card and to ensure you’re using this program in the most efficient method. Utilizing all of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad assortment of travel-related perks.