Souvenir Travel Pins

Are you tired of spending a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles, which can be used to score discounted or cheap flights from your ideal destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.

The Basics of Travel Hacking

Travel hacking is all about trading credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. The miles can be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car deals.

How Does it Work?

The secret to success in travel hacking is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to check your frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the number of miles or points in your travel account for each airline.

Start with Travel Hacking

Ready to learn the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that provide many advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your habits with spending and what features are essential to you.

Top Credit Card Picks

Here are a few credit card options that can be 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 or debit card, you’ll need to reach the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so be sure to check for the details. From there, it’s all about racking miles and using them to book your dream trip!

Ready to jet-set with your points?

Now that you’ve built up the points amount, it’s time to use them towards sweet getaway! Different credit card companies will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are a few examples from some of the providers I’ve had experience with:

Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you’re a holder of a Chase cards, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll have access to virtually every airline and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to book your travel. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full cost, you still can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using the credit card of your choice.

 

United

Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points for one flight. If you’re just a few points short, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.

JetBlue

Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points however, not both. But, JetBlue offers a distinct feature where you can join your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before trying to hack the system.

Hit that Minimum Spend

If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through it and we’re 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 a credit card, do it! Make sure you pay a cost, which is usually about 3%. It could be worthwhile in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.

Make a payment on a medical expense

Another great way to hit the required spending is to cover a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due Ask your family members if you can pay them for theirs, and they will reimburse you.

Pay off the loan

If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider making payments on them with your credit card. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accumulate more debt.

Ask family members for assistance

Talk to your family and look into any large expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Make sure that you are able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for doing it.

Purchase presents

If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all of your gifts with your credit card. This way you can hit that minimum spend and be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not paying more than you thinking of.

There are many ways to make the most out of the travel credit card. You can accumulate miles or points that you can spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising your rewards

Make travel reservations using your credit card

If you’re planning a trip, use your travel credit card to book your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. You’ll not only be able to meet the required amount for your credit card, but you’ll also earn points or miles on the costs.

Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday costs

Another method to reach the minimum amount of spending and earn points is making use of your credit card for every day expenditures. This could be things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.

Make the most 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 credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.

Think about a balance transfer

If you’re in the middle of a outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will let you 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 carefully

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 then compare the value of different redemption options. For example you can use your points to purchase a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them for the purchase of a gift card.

Another suggestion is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will allow you to have a wider range of choices and more flexibility when 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 a Hotel rewards programme. This can give an access wider variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits that aren’t offered through your credit card’s rewards program.

In addition, you should determine whether your credit card has certain benefits that will reduce your travel costs. Many cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that can be very beneficial when traveling.

When you travel with a companion each of you will be able to earn rewards with your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.

The key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re using this program in the most effective way possible. Through all of the strategies I’ve outlined that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.