Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles which can be used to get discounted or even cheap flights from your ideal destinations. With a little bit of creativity and some insider know-how, you’ll be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. These miles can then be used to pay for discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is to open a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards that offer a variety of benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are 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 reach the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of guidelines, so make sure to check for the details. Then, it’s all about racking miles and using them to book your dream vacation!
Ready to jet-set with your points?
After you’ve accrued the points amount, it’s time to use them towards nice travel! Different credit card companies will offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve worked with:
Take a trip through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you’re a holder of an Chase credit card, then you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can combine points and cash to book your trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the entire price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying with dollars or points? Butbe aware in case you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points for one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points short, United gives you the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to that of United Airlines which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you combine your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. But don’t fret, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share our tips and tricks.
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 about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to pay for a medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future then ask your relatives if you could pay for theirs and they can reimburse you.
Repay the loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration making payments on them with 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 have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for taking the initiative.
If you’re celebrating the holidays you should consider purchasing all your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready for gift giving. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you already contemplating to.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from your travel credit card. You can earn miles or points to be used towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional ideas for maximizing the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use you travel credit card to book your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. Not only will you be able to hit the required amount for your credit card and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles for these expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenses
Another method to reach the minimum spend in order to accumulate points utilising your credit cards to pay for daily expenditures. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t accumulate interest.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange for specific types of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Take into consideration the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing 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 transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points prudently
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points, be sure to use the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the value of different redemption options. For instance, using points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better 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 points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This gives an access greater range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits that aren’t offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine whether your credit card has any perks that can reduce your travel costs. Many cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else and both of you earn rewards with your credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to keep track of your rewards separately.
Overall, the key to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program on your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient method. By using a combination of the strategies I’ve listed, you’ll be able to earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.