Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s a fun way to convert bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles which can be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your ideal destinations. With a little creativity and some insider information, you’ll be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards will also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and establishing frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When you are ready to make a booking consider the cost. If the cost is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If your flights begin to climb above $500, you’ll want to review your frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the best deal. All it boils down to is the amount of miles or points in your travel account for each airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? Your first task is opening a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that offer a variety of benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are excellent for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit or debit card, you’ll need to reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to qualify for the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make sure to check for the details. Then, it’s all about racking up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some sweet vacation! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your points, but here are some examples from a few of the providers I have experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have a Chase card, you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can combine money and points to book your next trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the total cost, you are able to buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points for the same flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points away, United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience with extra space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that lets you pool your points together with your relatives to 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 and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn a credit card bonus. 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 to pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually around 3%. It might be worth it in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses due, ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they’ll pay you back.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration paying them off with the credit card you have. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance completely so that you don’t end up with additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can meet the minimum spending limit and also be prepared to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you thinking of.
There are many methods to get the most out of the travel credit card. earn miles or points to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of you travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum spend to earn your credit card reward and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on these expenses.
Use your credit card for all your daily costs
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending and earn points is making use of your credit card to pay for everyday expenditures. This could include things like food, gas, and even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance in full each month so 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, such as dining or travel. Make sure you review your rewards program on your credit card and make use of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending habits.
Consider a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer that balance onto an account with a travel credit card that has a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will let you pay off your debts without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and then compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance, using points to book a ticket directly through the airline may provide you with a greater value than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This gives you access to a wider selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits that may not be offered through the rewards program of your credit card.
Additionally, try to find out the card’s benefits. some perks that could help you save money on travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling with someone else and both of you earn rewards using your own credit card. Be aware that you cannot split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to track the rewards you earn separately.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand your credit card’s rewards program and ensure that you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient method possible. Utilizing a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined that you can get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad assortment of travel-related perks.