Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles that can then be used to score discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of 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 the art of exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. The miles can be used to buy discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles towards hotel stays or car rental offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the price is under $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to review those frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the best price. All it boils down to is the number of miles or points you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is to open the credit card that comes that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that provide a variety of features and benefits. It depends on the type of airline, your spending habits, and what features are essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are great 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 have to meet the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make 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 set sail with your goals?
Once you’ve accumulated the points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some sweet getaway! Different credit card companies will offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve worked with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to book your trip. You can even book completely with points if you’ve the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not possess enough points for the entire cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for 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 do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars for the same flight. No worries though, if you’re only a couple of points away, United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that lets you combine 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.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done it and are 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 pay a fee, usually about 3 percent. It may be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to pay for a 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 will repay you.
Repay a loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration making payments on them with the credit card you have. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Talk to your family and look into any major expenses in the near future that you can contribute for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re doing this.
If you’re celebrating the holidays take into consideration buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and also be ready for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel. accrue points or miles to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use your travel credit card to book your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to qualify for a credit card reward and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles for the costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenditures
Another method to reach the minimum spending requirement and earn points is utilising your credit cards to pay for daily costs. This could be items like groceries, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points, be sure to use them wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the value of different redemption options. For example using points to book a ticket directly with the airline could give you a better return than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get rewards cards that allow you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you enjoy a greater variety of options and greater flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a hotel rewards program. This will give the benefit of a larger variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not available through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should determine whether your credit card has 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 can be very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with a friend and both of you earn rewards using your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t share the costs on the same card, and be sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
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 making use of it in the most effective way possible. By using all of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.