Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking is the answer to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way 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 little bit of creativity and some insider know-how, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles towards hotel stays or car rental 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 for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking consider the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. If your flights begin to climb over $500, you’ll need to check the frequent flyer account and determine which airline offers you the best deal. It all comes down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? The first step is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide many 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 a few credit card options that can be excellent for travel hacking:
- 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 limit of spending minimum in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make sure to check for this information. From there, it’s all about racking miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your points?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, it’s time to cash them in for some nice getaway! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase credit card, then you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your trip. You can even book entirely with points if you’ve the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the total cost, you are able to buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option to pay with either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points for flights. No worries though, if you’re a few point short United provides the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue offers a distinct 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 into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done 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 pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually around 3%. It may be worth it in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up Ask your family members to pay for theirs and they’ll repay you.
Pay off the loan
If you have any loans you owe, think about making payments on them with an credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Just make sure you trust the person and they understand why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready to give gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already planning to.
There are plenty of ways to make the most from the travel credit card. accrue points or miles to spend on airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of your travel credit card to book your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you achieve the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card reward, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover the expenses.
Use your credit card for everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points utilising your credit cards to pay for daily costs. This could include items like groceries, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and take advantage of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Take into consideration a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles, be sure to use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For instance, using points to book 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 an rewards card that permits you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a reward program for hotels. This can give an access greater variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should discover whether your credit card has certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can earn rewards using your credit card. Be aware that you cannot split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and make sure you’re making use of this program in the most efficient method. Through an array of strategies I’ve listed in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad range of travel perks.