Are you tired of spending a fortune on airfare? Well, good news! Travel hacking can be the solution to all your travel problems. It’s an exciting method to turn credit card welcome bonuses and other incentives into airline miles, which can be used to obtain discounted or complimentary flights for your dream destinations. With a little bit of imagination and some knowledge, you can be jet-setting for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about trading credit card sign-up bonuses and incentives for airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy discount or no-cost flights. Certain credit cards allow you to redeem miles towards hotel stays or 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 to establish a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When it’s time to make a booking take a look at the price. If the price is under $300, it’s usually better to pay cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. If the prices start to rise higher than $500, it’s best to check the frequent flyer account and see which airline can give you the best deal. It all comes down to the number of points or miles you have in your travel bank for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Ready to learn the secrets to hacking travel? First step opening a credit card with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that offer a variety of advantages and features. It depends on the type of airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most important to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are some credit cards that are great for travel hacking:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit card you’ll need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to receive the bonus. Each card has its own rules, so make sure to look up this information. From there, it’s all about racking miles and using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your goals?
After you’ve accrued the points balance, it’s time to cash them in for some sweet getaway! Different credit card companies offer different ways to redeem your rewards, here are some examples from some of the ones I’ve worked with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you have a Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within this portal you’ll have access to almost every airline. You can use a combination of money and points to book your next trip. You can book your flight entirely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not possess enough points for the total cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying the full cost for your flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option of paying using dollars or points? Butbe aware in case you don’t have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on the same flight. No worries though, if you’re a few point short United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable flight experience with extra legroom as well as free snacks. Additionally, their booking process is similar to that of United Airlines that allows passengers to book flights using JetBlue either dollars or points but not both. However, JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature where you can join your points with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Make sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel companion Becca You’re probably quite economical and it’s daunting to try to spend thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for the credit card bonus. But don’t fret because we’ve been there 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 using credit card, go for it! Be prepared to pay a fee, usually about 3 percent. It might be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another excellent way to meet the required spending is to cover a medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up then ask your family members if you can pay for theirs and they can pay you back.
Repay the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan take into consideration repaying them using your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full so you don’t accumulate more debt.
Ask your family members for help
Talk to your family and determine if they’ve got any major expenses in the near future that you can contribute for. Just make sure you have confidence in the person you are talking to and they are aware of the reason for doing this.
If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all your gifts using your credit card. This way you can reach the minimum spending requirement and be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were planning to.
There are many ways to get the most out of using your credit or debit card for travel. You can accumulate miles or points that you can spend on the cost of flights or other expenses related to travel. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising 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 hotel, flight or rental car, as well as other travel costs. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also be earning points or miles to cover these costs.
Make use of your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenses
Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement and earn points is by using your credit card for every day costs. This could include items like groceries, gas or even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t pay interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points on certain kinds of purchases, such as eating out or travelling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and take advantage of the bonus categories that are in line with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you are currently in outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to an account with a travel credit card that has the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will let you pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points wisely
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles, be sure to use them in a responsible manner. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the benefits of different redemption options. For example you can use points to purchase a flight directly with the airline might offer better value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This will let you have a wider range of options and greater flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or reward program for hotels. This gives you access to a larger range of flights, hotels as well as other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program of your credit card.
Also, discover the card’s benefits. any perks that can reduce your travel costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection and other benefits that could be very beneficial when traveling.
When you travel with a companion each of you will be able to earn rewards with your credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card. Also, make sure you keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
The key to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand the rewards program of your credit card and ensure that you’re using it in the most effective way possible. Through all 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.