Are you tired of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to all your travel woes. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, that can then be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a little imagination and a little bit of insider know-how, 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 as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to purchase discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles for hotel stays and rental car offers.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful travel hacking is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and establishing frequent flyer miles for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the price is less than $300, it’s generally better to pay in cash and save your miles to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to look into the frequent flyer account and see which airline can give you the best price. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have in your travel account for every airline.
Get Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to hacking travel? The first step is opening an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer a variety of benefits and features. It is all dependent on the airline, your habits with spending and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards great 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 credit card has its own set of rules, so be sure to check for the details. From there, it’s all about racking up miles and then using them to book your dream vacation!
Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your points?
Now that you’ve built up the points amount, it’s time to cash them in for some nice vacation! Different credit card providers will have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are a few examples from some of the companies I’ve had experience with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own a Chase credit card, then you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll get access to almost every airline and you can use a combination of points and cash to book your next trip. You can even book completely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for entire price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option to pay with dollars or points? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points, you aren’t able to combine dollars and points for one flight. If you’re just a few points away, United provides the option of buying additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience , with more space and complimentary snacks. Additionally, their booking process is like United’s which allows you to book with either JetBlue either dollars or points, but not both. But, JetBlue offers a distinct feature where you can combine your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Make sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Hit 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 hit the required amount to qualify for a credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried because we’ve been there and we’re here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually around 3 percent. It may be worth it in the end when the bonus is large enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to pay for an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills due Ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will pay you back.
Repay a loan
If you’re a borrower, consider repaying them using the credit card you have. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask family for help
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all of your gifts with your credit card. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and be ready to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you already planning to.
There are plenty of methods to get the most out of your travel credit card. earn miles or points to spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few more ideas for maximizing your rewards
Make travel reservations using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, make use of the travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to hit the minimum spend to qualify for a credit card bonus, but you’ll also be earning points or miles on those expenditures.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is making use of your credit card to pay for every day expenditures. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full each month so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points for specific types of purchases, including dining or travel. Be sure to review your credit card’s rewards program and avail the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you have existing debt on a credit card, consider transferring that balance onto a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will allow you to pay off your debts without accruing interest and simultaneously assist you in reaching the minimum spending requirement for the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles make sure you use the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example you can use your points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer points to other loyalty programs. This will let you get a wider selection of options and greater freedom when it comes to making use of your rewards. For example, you may be capable of transferring your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This will 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 discover whether your credit card has any perks that can save you money on travel-related expenses. Some cards offer travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that can be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
Finally, when you’re traveling with a friend and both of you get rewards on your credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card and make sure to keep track of your rewards separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your travel rewards is to know the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of this program in the most effective way possible. By using a combination of the methods I’ve described, you’ll be able to get rewards in a short time, use them for travel experiences that are worth it and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.