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Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s a fun way to convert credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into miles which can be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider know-how, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.

The Basics of Travel Hacking

Travel hacking is all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. The miles can be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car discounts.

How Does it Work?

The most effective method for successful hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the cost is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise above $500, you’ll want to look into your frequent flyer accounts and see which airline can give you the best deal. It all boils down to the number of miles or points in your travel account for every airline.

Start with Travel Hacking

Ready to learn the secrets of travel hacking? Your first task is opening a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are many great credit cards that provide many features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most 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

After you’ve been accepted for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make certain to verify this information. Then, it’s all about racking up miles, and using them to plan your dream trip!

Ready to jet-set with your goals?

Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, you’re ready to use them towards nice getaway! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the ones I have experience with:

Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you have a Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll get access to virtually every airline and you can combine money and points to book your trip. You can book your flight entirely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for full cost, you are able to book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.

 

United

Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine dollars and points for flights. If you’re a few points away, United also offers the possibility of purchasing additional miles.

JetBlue

Looking for a flight within the United States? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is like United’s, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars, however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue offers a distinct feature that allows you to combine your points with your family members and earn points twice as fast. Just make sure you can establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.

Hit that Minimum Spend

If you’re like me or my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. Don’t worry as we’ve done 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 about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile over the long term if the bonus is high enough.

Pay a medical bill

Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to cover an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses coming up then ask your relatives if you could pay their medical bills and they’ll reimburse you.

Pay off the loan

If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider making payments on them with an credit card. Be sure to pay the credit card balance completely so that you don’t accrue more debt.

Ask your family members for help

Ask your family members to see if they have any large 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 taking the initiative.

Buy presents

If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts using cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you already thinking of.

There are plenty of ways to get the most out of your travel credit card and accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising your rewards

Pay for travel expenses using your credit card

If you’re planning a trip, make use of you travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. Not only will you achieve the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover those expenditures.

Use your credit card to pay for your everyday expenditures

Another method to reach the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is by using your credit card to pay for daily expenses. This could be things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay the balance off in full each month so you don’t accumulate interest.

Make the most of bonus categories

Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles on certain kinds of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.

Take into consideration a balance transfer

If you’re in the middle of a debt on a 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 the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously assist you in reaching the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.

Utilize your miles and points carefully

When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points make sure you use them wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For example, using your points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them for the purchase of a gift card.

Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of options and greater freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This gives an access greater selection of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that aren’t accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.

Additionally, try to discover whether your credit card has some perks that could help you save money on travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.

When you travel with someone else, both of you can earn rewards using your credit card. Just remember that you can’t share the costs on the same card, and be sure to track your rewards separately.

In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient way possible. By using a combination of the methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.