Are you tired of paying an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert bonus and sign-up incentives into miles that can then be used to get discounted or even free flights to your dream destinations. With a little bit of imagination and some knowledge, you can travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to purchase cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight consider the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. When the flights start getting higher than $500, it’s best to look into your frequent flyer accounts and find out which airline will give you the best deal. It all boils down to the amount of points or miles you have in your travel account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? First step opening the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are many great credit cards that offer many advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are great to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit or debit card, you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so be sure to look up the details. Then it’s all about building miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your points?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, it’s time to use them towards nice travel! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the ones I have experience with:
Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase card, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline. You can combine points and cash to pay for your travel. You can even book completely with points if you’ve the balance for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the total 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 your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying with dollars or points? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars on flights. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of points short, United also offers the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Just make sure you can verify that you are a family member 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 economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn credit card bonuses. But don’t fret, we’ve been through it and are 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 your rent using credit card, go for it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It might be worth it in the long run when the bonus is large enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another great way to hit the minimum spend is to pay for a medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills due, ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they can pay you back.
Pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration repaying them using the credit card you have. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family for help
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts using cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to hit that minimum spend and be ready for giving gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you contemplating to.
There are many ways to get the most of the travel credit card and accumulate miles or points that you can spend on airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of your travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you be able to meet the minimum spend to earn your credit card, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on these expenses.
Use your credit card to pay for your everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum spend in order to accumulate points using your credit card to pay every day expenses. This could be things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange on certain kinds of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and then compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example you can use points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may provide you with a greater value than using them for a gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or reward program for hotels. This can give an access larger variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.
In addition, you should determine if your credit card offers any perks that can help you save money on travel expenses. Some 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 a friend each of you will be able to earn rewards with your credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card, and be sure to keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program on your credit card and to ensure you’re using this program in the most effective method possible. Through an array of strategies I’ve listed in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.