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Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles which can be used to get discounted or even free flights to your desired destinations. With a little bit of imagination and a little bit of insider knowledge, you can travel for free within a matter of minutes.

The Basics of Travel Hacking

Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. The miles can be used to purchase discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards will also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental discounts.

How Does it Work?

The secret to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight consider the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise above $500, you’ll want to check your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the most value. It all comes down to the amount of miles or points in your travel account for each airline.

Get Started with Travel Hacking

Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer various benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and what features are crucial to you.

Top Credit Card Picks

Here are some credit cards perfect for travel hacking:

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve
  • Chase United Explorer
  • JetBlue Mastercard
  • Capital One Venture X

Once you’ve been approved for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be certain to verify the details. From there you can begin to rack up miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!

Are you ready to set sail with your goals?

Once you’ve accumulated your points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some delicious vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the companies I’ve worked with:

Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you have a Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline. You can combine money and points to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for total cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with the credit card of your choice.

 

United

Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying with dollars or points? Butbe aware, if you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points on one flight. No worries though, if you’re just a few points away, United also offers the option of buying additional miles.

JetBlue

Are you looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to United’s that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points, but not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that lets you pool your points together with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.

Reach that Minimum Spend

If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried, 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 to pay for your rent using a credit card, do it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically at least 3 percent. It may be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.

Pay a medical bill

Another great way to hit the minimum spend is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up then ask your relatives if you could pay their medical bills and they can pay you back.

Pay off the loan

If you have any loans, consider paying them off with an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card in full so you don’t end up with more debt.

Ask your family members for help

Talk to your family and look into any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re doing it.

Purchase presents

If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were already thinking of.

There are a lot of methods to get the most of the travel credit card and accumulate miles or points that you can spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are some additional ways to maximize the rewards you earn:

Pay for travel expenses using your credit card

Whenever you’re planning a trip, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. Not only will you achieve the minimum spend for your credit card reward as well, but you’ll also be earning points or miles on the costs.

Use your credit card for everyday costs

Another method to reach the minimum spend in order to accumulate points by using your credit card to pay for daily costs. This can include items like groceries, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full each month so you don’t accumulate interest.

Benefit from bonus categories

Many travel credit cards offer bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, such as dining or travel. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.

Think about a balance transfer

If you have existing debt on a credit card, think about transferring the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will let you pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.

Utilize your miles and points prudently

If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles make sure you use the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the worth of various redemption options. For example using points to book a flight directly with the airline could give you a better return than using them for the purchase of a gift card.

Another option is to get rewards cards that allow you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility in making use of your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or reward program for hotels. This gives the benefit of a larger variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.

In addition, you should discover the card’s benefits. any perks that can save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.

Finally, when you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can earn rewards with your own credit card. Be aware that you cannot share the costs on the same card, and be sure to keep track of your rewards separately.

Overall, the key to maximizing your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program on your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of this program in the most effective method possible. Utilizing all of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards quickly, redeem them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide variety of travel benefits.