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 an exciting method to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into miles which you can use to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a little imagination and some information, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing frequent flyer miles on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight take a look at the price. If the flight is under $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review those frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the most value. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is to open a credit card with a sign-up bonus. There are many great credit cards that provide many features and benefits. It depends on the type of airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are great 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 need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so make sure to look up this information. Then it’s all about building up miles, and using them to plan your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your goals?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some sweet vacation! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your points. Here are some examples from some of the companies I’ve had experience with:
Escape by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase card, you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through this portal you’ll get access to virtually every airline, and you can make use of a combination of points and cash to book your travel. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t have enough points to cover the entire cost, you still can book flights using 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 flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? But, be careful, if you do not have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars for flights. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points away, United also offers the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines that allows customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. However, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can join your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Just make sure you can verify that you are a family member before trying to hack into the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done 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 to pay for your rent using a credit card, do it! Make sure you pay a fee, usually around 3 percent. It might be worth it in the end in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the minimum spend is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future then ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will pay you back.
Pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about repaying them using 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 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. Make sure that you are able to are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re doing this.
If it’s the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts with the credit card you have. So you’ll be able to meet the minimum spending limit and also be prepared for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you thinking of.
There are plenty of methods to get the most of your travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, make use of your travel credit card to pay for your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you achieve the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card, but you’ll also earn points or miles for those expenditures.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenses
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by making use of your credit card for daily expenses. This can include things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, such as dining or travel. Be sure to review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off the debt without accruing interest and simultaneously aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Review the rewards program for your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance using your points to book a ticket directly through the airline may provide you with a greater value than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use rewards cards that allow you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will let you get a wider selection of choices and more freedom when it comes to making use of your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This can give the benefit of a larger selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that may not be offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
In addition, you should discover the card’s benefits. any perks that can help you save money on travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a companion each of you will be able to earn rewards using your credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card and make sure to track your rewards separately.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and make sure you’re using this program in the most effective method. Through all of the strategies I’ve listed, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.