Are you fed up of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, that can then be used to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of imagination and some know-how, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to buy cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles towards hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and establishing a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the flight is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. When the flights start getting over $500, you’ll need to look into those frequent flyer accounts to 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 account for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is opening the credit card that comes with a sign-up bonus. There are many great credit cards that provide a variety of advantages and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be excellent to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be sure to look up the details. From there you can begin to rack miles and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your goals?
After you’ve accrued your points balance, it’s time to use them towards sweet getaway! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve worked with:
Escape through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you own an Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline, and you can combine money and points to book your trip. You can even book completely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes, even if you don’t be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for total price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying with either points or dollars? But, be careful that if you do not have enough points you cannot combine dollars and points for flights. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points away, United provides the option to purchase additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable travel experience that includes extra legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s, allowing you to book with either JetBlue points or dollars, but not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature where you can pool your points together with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Make 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 companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. But don’t fret because we’ve been there and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Just be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually about 3%. It may be worth it over the long term when the bonus is large enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the spending limit is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up then ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they can repay you.
Pay off the loan
If you have any loans, consider making payments on them with the credit card you have. Make sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Ask your family members to look into any big expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re doing this.
If you’re celebrating the holidays, consider buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can hit that minimum spend and be ready for giving gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are many ways to get the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel. earn miles or points to use towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of you travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you be able to meet the minimum spend to earn your credit card, but you’ll also earn points or miles for these expenditures.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenses
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards to pay for everyday costs. This could include items like groceries, gas or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full each month so you don’t pay interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
Think about a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to the travel credit card which has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For example using your points to book a ticket directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them for a gift card.
Another tip is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will let you have a wider range of options and greater flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For example, you may be able to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This can give you access to a larger range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits which are not offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, find out the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will reduce your travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with someone else each of you will be able to earn rewards using your credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to track the rewards you earn separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do 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 using your credit card in the most effective way possible. Through all of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.