Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s a fun way to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles which can be used to obtain discounted or free flights to your desired destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider information, you’ll be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. The miles can be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise above $500, you’ll want to check those frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best price. It all boils down to the amount of miles or points in your travel account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? First step opening an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer various benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards perfect to use for hacking travel:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
If you’ve been approved for a credit card you’ll need to hit the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different guidelines, so make sure to look up the details. From there, it’s all about racking up 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 amount, it’s time to cash them in for some sweet travel! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points, but here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve had experience with:
Getaway through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of an Chase cards, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to virtually every airline. You can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your trip. You can book your flight entirely on points if you have the balance for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the entire price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United you can choose the option to pay with dollars or points? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine points and dollars for one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few point short United also offers the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra legroom as well as free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars however, not both. However, 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 quickly. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried, we’ve been through it and are here to share 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, go for it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to pay for a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up, ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you have any loans take into consideration paying them off with your credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Discuss your family with them and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to have confidence in the person you are talking to and they know why you’re doing this.
If you’re celebrating the holidays, consider buying all your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and also be prepared to give gifts. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already contemplating to.
There are many methods to get the most of your travel credit card. accrue points or miles to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use your travel credit card to book your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as other travel costs. In addition, you’ll be able to hit the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card reward as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover the expenditures.
Make use of your credit card to pay for everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards for everyday expenditures. This can include things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t pay interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles for certain types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review the rewards program of your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Consider a balance transfer
If you have existing outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfer. This will let you pay off your debt without accruing interest and simultaneously help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and then compare the value of different redemption options. For instance using points to purchase a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you have a wider range of options and greater flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a reward program for hotels. This will give the benefit of a larger range of flights, hotels, and other travel perks which are not available through the rewards program on your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine the card’s benefits. any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
When you travel with a friend 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 keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
Overall, the key to maximizing your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program of your credit card and make sure you’re making use of it in the most effective method possible. Through an array of strategies I’ve listed, you’ll be able to earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.