Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting way to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which can be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a little creativity and some insider knowledge, you can be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of trading credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles towards hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s best to pay cash and save your miles to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to look into your frequent flyer accounts and determine which airline offers you the most value. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles in your travel account for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open the credit card that comes with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards that provide a variety of advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, your habits with spending and what features are important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards perfect 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 hit the minimum spend limit in order to get the bonus. Every card has different guidelines, so make sure to check for this information. From there you can begin to rack up miles and then using them to book your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
Once you’ve accumulated the points balance, it’s time to use them towards delicious getaway! Different credit card companies will offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are a few examples from some of the companies I have experience with:
Getaway by using Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have an Chase cards, you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can use a combination of points and cash to book your trip. You can even book entirely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the total cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option to pay with either points or dollars? Butbe aware that if you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine points and dollars for flights. Don’t worry, though, if you’re just a few points away, United provides the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra legroom and free snacks. Plus, their booking process is similar to United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue either dollars or points, but not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that allows you to 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.
Hit that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me or my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for credit card bonuses. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and are here to share our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge 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 at least 3 percent. It may be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Make a payment on a medical expense
Another way to reach the spending limit is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills due Ask your family members to pay for theirs and they’ll reimburse you.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration repaying them using an credit card. Just make sure you pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate additional debt.
Ask your family members for help
Ask your family members to look into any large expenses coming up which you could help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they know why you’re doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season you should consider purchasing all of your gifts with your credit card. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready for gift giving. Be sure to avoid paying more than you already contemplating to.
There are a lot of ways to make the most out of your travel credit card. accrue points or miles to be used towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few additional suggestions for maximising your rewards:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, use your travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight, rental car, and other travel costs. In addition, you’ll achieve the required amount for your credit card, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on those expenditures.
Utilize your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum amount of spending in order to accumulate points by utilising your credit cards to pay for daily expenditures. This could be things like gas, groceries or even your phone bill. Make sure you pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Make the most of bonus categories
A lot of travel credit cards provide miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage 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, you might want to transfer that balance to an account with a travel credit card that has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points wisely
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Check out the rewards program on your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For instance you can use your points to purchase a flight directly with the airline might give you a better return than using them for a gift card.
Another suggestion is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your points to other loyalty programs. This will allow you to enjoy a greater variety of options and greater freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your reward to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a Hotel rewards programme. This can give the benefit of a wider selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
In addition, you should find out if your credit card offers any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
If you’re traveling with someone else each of you will be able to earn rewards using your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t split the cost on the same card and make sure you keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
Overall, the key to maximizing your travel rewards is to know your credit card’s rewards program and to ensure you’re using it in the most efficient method possible. Utilizing a combination of the strategies I’ve listed in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange rewards for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide range of travel perks.