Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which can be used to get discounted or even cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little imagination and some information, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental offers.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and to establish a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to look into your frequent flyer accounts and see which airline can give you the most value. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is opening a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide many features and benefits. It depends on the type of airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit card options that can be great to hack travel
- 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 hit the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make certain to verify this information. From there you can begin to rack up miles, and using them to plan your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, it’s time to redeem them for some delicious travel! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your points. Here are some examples from a few of the companies I’ve worked with:
Take a trip by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase card, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can combine money and points to pay for your next trip. You can book your flight entirely using points if you’ve got the balance for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full price, you 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 using dollars or points? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars on flights. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points short, United provides the option of buying additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more legroom as well as free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is like United’s which allows you to book with either JetBlue dollar or points, however, not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature where you can join your points with family members to accrue points twice as quickly. Be sure to 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 buddy Becca, you’re probably pretty frugal and it can be daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. Don’t worry, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is an important one! If you’re able pay your rent with credit card, go for it! Make sure you pay a cost, which is usually about 3%. It may be worth it over the long term 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 a medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills due, ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they’ll repay you.
Repay a loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration making payments on them with the credit card you have. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t end up with more debt.
Ask family for help
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing this.
If it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with cards from your credit account. So you’ll be able to hit that minimum spend and be ready to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already contemplating to.
There are many ways to make the most from your travel credit card. earn miles or points to spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few more ways to maximize your rewards:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, make use of your travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. You’ll not only achieve the required amount for your credit card reward, however, you’ll also earn points or miles for the costs.
Use your credit card to pay for your everyday expenditures
Another way to meet the minimum spend to earn rewards is utilising your credit cards to pay for everyday costs. This could be things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance in full every month to ensure you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, like eating out or travelling. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and make use of any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you are currently in 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 enable you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles make sure you use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For example you can use points to book a ticket directly through the airline may give you a better return than using them for a gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility in making use of your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or reward program for hotels. This can give you access to a larger selection of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that may not be available through the rewards program of your credit card.
In addition, you should find out if your credit card offers some perks that could save you money on travel-related costs. Some 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 with your credit card. Be aware that you cannot split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards in a separate manner.
Overall, the key to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective way possible. Through all of the methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.