Are you fed up of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which can be used to get discounted or even free flights to your ideal destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. The miles can be used to pay for cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and building out frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight consider the cost. If the flight is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to check those frequent flyer accounts to find out which airline will give you the best price. It all comes down to the amount of points or miles in your travel account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening a credit card with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide various benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some 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 spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to get the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to check for this information. Then you can begin to rack up miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your points?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, it’s time to use them towards delicious getaway! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from some of the companies I’ve had experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase card, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full 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.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying with either points or dollars? Be careful in case you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points on one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few point short United also offers the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to that of United Airlines which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars but not both. But, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to join your points with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for the credit card bonus. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and are here to share 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 credit card, then do it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually around 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to cover the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up then ask your relatives if you could pay their medical bills and they will pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you’re a borrower, consider paying them off with the credit card you have. Be sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any big expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready for gift giving. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you already thinking of.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from your travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you be able to hit the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card reward and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles to cover the expenditures.
Utilize your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum spend and earn points is making use of your credit card to pay for daily expenditures. This can include things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Take advantage of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, including dining or travel. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points prudently
When you’ve earned a significant amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For instance using points to book a ticket directly with the airline might provide you with a greater return than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to have a wider range of choices and more flexibility in you want to redeem 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 greater selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, find out if your credit card offers any perks that can reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that are invaluable when you travel.
Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else each of you will be able to get rewards on your credit card. Be aware that you cannot share the costs on the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to maximizing your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of it in the most effective method. Utilizing an array of strategies I’ve listed, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.