Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which can be used to obtain discounted or free flights to your dream destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider information, 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 later be used to purchase discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight consider the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise above $500, you’ll want to look into the frequent flyer account and find out which airline will give you the best deal. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? First step to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are plenty of great credit cards that offer many features and benefits. It depends on the type of airline, spending habits and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are excellent 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 qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to look up this information. Then you can begin to rack up miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, it’s time to cash them in for some delicious vacation! Different credit card companies will offer different ways to redeem your points, but here are a few examples from some of the providers I have experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase card, you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within the portal, you’ll get access to nearly every airline, and you can combine the points as well as cash in order to pay for your travel. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the full cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using any credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? But, be careful that if you do not have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars for the same flight. If you’re only a couple of point short United provides the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. However, JetBlue has a unique feature where you can pool your points together with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. Don’t worry, 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 pay your rent using a credit card, do it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually around 3%. It might be worth it over the long term if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the minimum spend is to cover the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills due, ask your relatives if you could pay their medical bills and they’ll pay you back.
Pay off a loan
If you’re a borrower you owe, think about repaying them using your credit card. Just make sure you pay the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Discuss your family with them and look into any large expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re celebrating the holidays, consider buying all of your gifts with your credit card. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and also be prepared for gift giving. Be sure to avoid spending more than you thinking of.
There are many methods to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel and accrue points or miles to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ways to maximize the rewards you earn:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of the travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. Not only will you be able to meet the required amount for your credit card and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles for the costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay for everyday costs
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending and earn points is by making use of your credit card for everyday expenses. This could include things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. Check out your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing debt on a credit card, think about transferring the balance to a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will let you pay off your debt without accruing interest and simultaneously assist you in reaching 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 Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For example you can use your points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may provide you with a greater return than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to get a wider selection of options and greater freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a reward program for hotels. This will give you access to a larger variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine if your credit card offers certain benefits that will help you save money on travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a companion and both of you earn rewards using your credit card. Just remember that you can’t share the costs on the same card and make sure to track your rewards separately.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient way possible. Through an array of strategies I’ve listed, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.