Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, which can be used to score discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of imagination and some information, you’ll travel for free 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 cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for successful travel hacking is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and building out a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to look into the frequent flyer account and see which airline can give you the most value. It all comes down to the amount of miles or points you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that provide many advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and what features are essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are great to use for hacking 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 hit the limit of spending minimum in order to qualify for the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so make certain to verify the details. Then, it’s all about racking up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated your points balance, you’re ready to redeem them for some nice getaway! Different credit card companies will have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are some examples from some of the companies I’ve worked with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have a Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through the portal, you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can combine money and points to book your travel. You can even book entirely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware, if you do not have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points on one flight. If you’re a few points away, United also offers 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 flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points but not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that allows you to join your points with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty thrifty and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. But don’t fret, 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 pay your rent with credit card, go for it! Make sure you pay a cost, which is usually at least 3 percent. It might be worth it in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another great way to hit the spending limit is to pay for a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due, ask your family members to pay them for theirs, and they’ll repay you.
Pay off the loan
If you have any loans take into consideration repaying them using an credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing this.
If you’re celebrating the holidays take into consideration buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to meet the minimum spending limit and be ready for giving gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already contemplating to.
There are many ways to get the most of the travel credit card. accrue points or miles to spend on airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few additional ideas for maximizing the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll achieve the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card reward, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover the costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenses
Another method to reach the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is using your credit card to pay for daily expenditures. This can include items like groceries, gas, and even your phone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing debt on a credit card, consider transferring that balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For example 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 your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility when redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This will give the benefit of a larger selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks which are not offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, find out if your credit card offers some perks that could save you money on travel-related costs. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with someone else 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 and make sure you keep track of your rewards separately.
Overall, the key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and make sure you’re using this program in the most efficient way possible. Utilizing all of the strategies I’ve outlined, you’ll be able to earn rewards quickly, redeem rewards for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad range of travel perks.