Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting method to convert welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which you can use to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your ideal destinations. With a little bit of imagination and a little bit of insider knowledge, you can travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about exchanging credit card sign-up bonuses as well as incentives to earn airline miles. The miles can be used to purchase discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The secret to success in travel hacking is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and to establish a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When it comes time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the cost is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and save your miles for a more expensive flight. If your flights begin to climb higher than $500, it’s best to check your frequent flyer accounts and find out which airline will give you the best price. It all boils down to the number of points or miles you have you have in your travel savings account for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? Your first task is to open an account that comes with a welcome bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer various benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most essential to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit card options that can be great to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit or debit card, you’ll need to reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different rules, so be sure to look up this information. From there it’s all about building up miles and using them to plan your dream trip!
Ready to jet-set with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued your points amount, it’s time to redeem them for some nice vacation! Different credit card companies will have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the ones I’ve worked with:
Take a trip through Chase Ultimate Reward
If you own an Chase cards, you are able to redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll get access to nearly every airline and you can use a combination of points and cash to book your next trip. You can even book completely with points if you’ve enough balance! Sometimes even if you do not be able to accumulate enough points in order to pay for entire price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with any credit card.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flight tickets? Did you realize that when booking directly through United, you have the option of paying with either points or dollars? But, be careful, if you don’t have enough points, you cannot combine dollars and points on flights. If you’re only a couple of point short United gives you the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant travel experience that includes extra legroom and free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue dollar or points however, not both. However, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that lets you combine your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Be sure to prove you’re really family before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel companion Becca, you’re probably pretty thrifty and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars to hit the required amount to qualify for credit card bonuses. But don’t fret because we’ve been there and we’re here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able to pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically around 3%. It could be worthwhile in the end in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future Ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they will repay you.
Repay the loan
If you have any loans, consider making payments on them with your credit card. Make sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask family for help
Talk to your family and see if they have any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Just make sure you are able to trust the person and that they understand why you’re taking the initiative.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season, consider buying all your gifts using your credit card. So you’ll be able to hit that minimum spend and also be prepared for gift giving. Be sure to avoid spending more than you already planning to.
There are many ways to get the most from your travel credit card. accrue points or miles to spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are a few additional ways to maximize your rewards:
Book travel expenses with your credit card
If you’re planning a trip, make use of your travel credit card to pay for your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the required amount to qualify for a credit card reward as well, but you’ll also earn points or miles to cover those costs.
Use your credit card for all your daily expenditures
Another way to hit the minimum spending requirement in order to accumulate points utilising your credit cards to pay everyday costs. This could include things like food, gas or even your phone bill. Be sure to pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, including eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and avail any bonus categories that align with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfer. This will enable you to pay off your debts without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card and compare the value of different redemption options. For instance using your points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may give you a better return than using them for an gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer your 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 instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a Hotel rewards programme. This can give you access to a greater variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks which are not available through your credit card’s rewards program.
Also, determine the card’s benefits. certain benefits that will reduce your travel expenses. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a companion and both of you earn rewards using your credit card. Be aware that you cannot divide the cost with the same card, and be sure you keep track of your rewards in a separate manner.
In the end, the most important thing to do to making the most of your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program on your credit card and ensure that you’re making use of it in the most effective way possible. Utilizing an array of strategies I’ve listed that you can earn rewards fast, exchange them for travel experiences that are worth it and benefit from a wide assortment of travel-related perks.