Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your dream destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight consider the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to review the frequent flyer account and determine which airline offers you the best price. It all boils down to the number of miles or points you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer a variety of advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be excellent for travel hacking:
- 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 credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to check for the details. Then you can begin to rack miles and using them to book your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
Once you’ve accumulated your points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some delicious getaway! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from a few of the ones I have experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through the portal, you’ll have access to virtually every airline, and you can make use of a combination of money and points to pay for your next trip. You can even book completely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the total price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option to pay with dollars or points? Be careful in case you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points for the same flight. No worries though, if you’re a few point short United also offers the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to that of United Airlines that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points, but not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as fast. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and we’re here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able to pay for your rent using a credit card, do it! Make sure you be charged a fee, typically around 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the end if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another great way to hit the required spending is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they can reimburse you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you have any loans, consider repaying them using your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays take into consideration buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready for gift giving. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you thinking of.
There are many ways to make the most out of your travel credit card. accrue points or miles to use towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use your travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight, rental car, and other travel costs. You’ll not only be able to hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus, but you’ll also be earning points or miles for these expenses.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenditures
Another method to reach the minimum spending requirement and earn points is by using your credit card to pay for every day costs. This could include items like groceries, gas, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Be sure to review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you are currently in outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer that balance to the travel credit card which has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles prudently
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the worth of various redemption options. For instance, using points to book a flight directly through the airline may provide you with a greater value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another suggestion is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This can give you access to a wider range of flights, hotels as well as other travel perks which are not accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
Additionally, try to find out the card’s benefits. some perks that could help you save money on travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that can be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a friend each of you will be able to get rewards on your credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card. Also, make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and make sure you’re making use of this program in the most effective method possible. Utilizing an array of methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide assortment of travel-related perks.