Are you tired of spending an enormous amount on flights? Well, good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to convert sign-up bonuses and incentives into airline miles that can then be used to obtain discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of imagination and some information, you’ll fly for no cost within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is the art of exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses and rewards for airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The secret to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking consider the cost. If the flight is under $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to look into the frequent flyer account to determine which airline offers you the best price. All it boils down to is the amount of points or miles you have in your travel bank for each airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is to open the credit card that comes that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide a variety of features and benefits. It is all dependent on the airline, your spending habits, 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 have to meet the minimum spend limit in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different guidelines, so make sure to look up this information. From there it’s all about building miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to set sail with your points?
After you’ve accrued the points amount, it’s time to cash them in for some delicious getaway! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your points, but here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve worked with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase card, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Through this portal you’ll have access to nearly every airline. You can make use of a combination of money and points to pay for your trip. You can book your flight entirely on points if you have enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the full cost, you still can book flights using the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using every credit card.
Are you tired of paying full price for your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United You have the option to pay with dollars or points? But, be careful, if you do not have enough points you cannot combine dollars and points on one flight. If you’re just a few points away, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra legroom and free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to United’s that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue points or dollars however, not both. However, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can combine your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.
Make sure you spend that minimum amount
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca I’m sure you’re pretty thrifty and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried as we’ve done it and are here to share some of our tips and tricks.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able pay your rent with a credit card, do it! Just be prepared to be charged a fee, typically at least 3 percent. It may be worth it in the long run when the bonus is large enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up Ask your family members if you can pay their medical bills and they can repay you.
Make a payment to pay off a loan
If you’re a borrower take into consideration repaying them using your credit card. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card completely so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Discuss your family with them and determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future that you can help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they are aware of the reason for doing this.
If you’re celebrating the holidays, consider buying all of your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll meet the minimum spending limit and also be prepared to give gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were thinking of.
There are a lot of methods to get the most out of your travel credit card and accumulate miles or points that you can be used towards the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few more ways to maximize your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a vacation, make use of your travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel, rental car, and any other travel expenses. Not only will you achieve the minimum spend for your credit card reward and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on those expenses.
Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily costs
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is utilising your credit cards to pay daily expenditures. This could be things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Be sure to review the rewards program of your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Think about a balance transfer
If you have existing debt on a high-interest credit card, think about transferring that balance onto a travel credit card with an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Make use of your miles or points prudently
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points make sure you use them in a responsible manner. Examine the rewards program of your credit card, and evaluate the benefits of different redemption options. For instance using your points to book a flight directly with the airline might provide you with a greater value than using them for an gift card.
Another suggestion is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This allows you to have a wider range of options and greater freedom when it comes to you want to redeem your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your rewards to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a hotel rewards program. This will give you access to a larger range of flights, hotels and other travel benefits that may not be offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
In addition, you should determine whether your credit card has certain benefits that will help you save money on travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that can be very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with someone else and both of you get rewards on your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure to track your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and to ensure you’re making use of this program in the most effective method possible. Through all of the strategies I’ve listed that you can get rewards in a short time, use them for valuable travel experiences and take advantage of a broad variety of travel benefits.