Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles, which you can use to obtain discounted or free flights to your ideal destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and rewards for airline miles. The miles can be used to buy cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and establishing a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to look into the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all boils down to the number of points or miles in your travel account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to hacking travel? First step to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are many great credit cards that offer various benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and what features are crucial 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 reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to look up the details. Then it’s all about building up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, you’re ready to use them towards nice travel! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are a few examples from some of the companies I have experience with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have a Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to virtually every airline, and you can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your trip. You can even book completely on points if you have enough balance! 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 in cash with every credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option of paying with either points or dollars? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars for the same flight. If you’re just a few point short United also offers the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s which allows customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars but not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that lets you combine your points with your relatives to earn points twice as fast. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn a credit card bonus. Don’t worry, 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 using a credit card, do it! Just be prepared to pay a fee, usually at least 3%. It might be worth it in the long run when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the required spending is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills due, ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they can repay you.
Pay off a loan
If you have any loans take into consideration repaying them using an credit card. Make sure to pay the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Ask your family members to look into any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all your gifts using the credit card you have. So you’ll be able to hit that minimum spend and also be prepared to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you thinking of.
There are plenty of ways to make the most from 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:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next vacation, make use of you travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. You’ll not only achieve the required amount to earn your credit card reward, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover the expenditures.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum spending requirement and earn points is using your credit card to pay for everyday expenses. This could be items like groceries, gas and even your telephone 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 on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Think about a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance onto a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest and simultaneously help you hit the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points prudently
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card and then compare the worth of various redemption options. For instance you can use 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 rewards cards that allow you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you have a wider range of choices and more freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a hotel rewards program. This gives you access to a larger selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, determine the card’s benefits. some perks that could reduce your travel expenses. 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 companion and both of you earn rewards with your own credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards in a separate manner.
The key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of it in the most effective way possible. By using a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.