Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s a fun way to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into miles that can then be used to get discounted or even complimentary flights for your dream destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll fly for no cost in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can later be used to buy discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing frequent flyer miles with a limited number of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight take a look at the price. If the flight is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. When the flights start getting above $500, you’ll want to review the frequent flyer account and determine which airline offers you the best deal. It all boils down to the number of miles or points in your travel account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer many benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are great to use for hacking travel:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the limit of spending minimum in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to check for this information. Then, it’s all about racking up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your points?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, it’s time to use them towards sweet vacation! Different credit card providers will have different methods of redeeming your rewards, 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 credit card, then you are able to redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll get access to nearly every airline, and you can make use of a combination of points and cash to pay for your travel. You can even book entirely with points if you’ve the funds to pay for it! Sometimes, even if you don’t possess enough points for the entire cost, you are able to purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United you can choose the option of paying using dollars or points? But, be careful in case you do not have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars for one flight. Don’t worry, though, if you’re a few point short United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to United’s that allows you to book with either JetBlue either dollars or points, however, not both. But, JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you 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 the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. Don’t worry as we’ve done 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 using credit card, go for it! Make sure you pay a cost, which is usually around 3%. It might be worth it in the long run in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another great way to hit the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you do not have any medical expenses in the near future Ask your family members to pay for theirs and they can repay you.
Pay off a loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider making payments on them with your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family for help
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you have confidence in the person you are talking to and they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all your gifts with the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll meet the minimum spending limit and be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were already thinking of.
There are a lot of ways to get the most of the travel credit card. You can accrue points or miles to use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising the rewards you earn:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, use you travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel, rental car, and other travel costs. Not only will you be able to hit the required amount for your credit card reward, but you’ll also earn points or miles for these expenditures.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday expenses
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards to pay everyday expenses. This could be things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, such as dining or travel. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Consider the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, think about transferring the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points carefully
If you’ve amassed a large amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the worth of various redemption options. For instance you can use your points to book a ticket directly with the airline might offer better value than using them to purchase the purchase of a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer your reward points into other loyalty programmes. This allows you to get a wider selection of choices and more flexibility in you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be eligible to transfer your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This gives you access to a larger range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits which are not offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should discover whether your credit card has some perks that could help you save money on travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide 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, both of you can earn rewards using your credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re making use of your credit card in the most effective method. Through all of the methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.