Are you tired of paying thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into miles that can then be used to get discounted or even free flights to your ideal destinations. With a little bit of imagination and a little bit of insider information, you’ll be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discounted or even free flights. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles for hotel stays and car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The key to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight take a look at the price. If the flight is less than $300, it’s generally better to pay cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. When the flights start getting over $500, you’ll need to look into the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the best price. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles you have in your travel bank for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? Your first task is to open a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide various 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 cards excellent for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit card, you’ll need to reach the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make certain to verify the details. From there it’s all about building up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
Now that you’ve built up your points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some delicious vacation! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from a few of the companies I’ve had experience with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through this portal you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can make use of a combination of points and cash to pay for your travel. You can book your flight entirely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for total cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with any credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine points and dollars on flights. No worries though, if you’re just a few points short, United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Plus, their booking process is like United’s which allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars, however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to pool your points together 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 into the system.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and are here to share some of 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 credit card, then do it! Just be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually about 3 percent. It could be worthwhile in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the minimum spend is to pay for the medical bills. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future, ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they will repay you.
Pay off a loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration making payments on them with your credit card. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they know why you’re doing this.
If it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all your gifts using cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for gift giving. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were already contemplating to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most of using your credit or debit card for travel. accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a vacation, make use of the travel credit card to book your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. You’ll not only be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card bonus as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles to cover these costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is by making use of your credit card to pay for daily costs. This could be things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer bonus points or miles for specific types of purchases, including dining or travel. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending habits.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring that balance onto the travel credit card which has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will enable you to pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles carefully
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the worth of various redemption options. For example using your points to book a ticket directly with the airline could offer better value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to have a wider range of options and greater freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your rewards to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a hotel rewards program. This can give an access greater variety of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not accessible through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, discover whether your credit card has some perks that could save you money on travel-related expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with someone else, both of you can get rewards on your own credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card and make sure to keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
The key to making the most of your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re using this program in the most efficient method. Through a combination of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.