Are you tired of paying an enormous amount on flights? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could be the solution to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting way to convert bonus and sign-up incentives into airline miles, that can then be used to obtain discounted or free flights to your ideal destinations. With a little creativity and some insider information, you’ll travel for free 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 pay for discounted or even free flights. Some credit cards also let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or car rental deals.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses and establishing a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it comes time to make a booking, evaluate the cost. If the cost is less than $300, it’s best to pay 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 your frequent flyer accounts to determine which airline offers you the best price. It all boils down to the amount of points or miles you have in your travel savings account for each airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open an account with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards with various benefits and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, your spending habits, and what features are crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are perfect to use for hacking travel:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
Once you’ve been approved for a credit card, you’ll have to meet the limit of spending minimum 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 using them to book your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your ideas?
After you’ve accrued your points amount, it’s time to cash them in for some sweet travel! Different credit card companies have different methods for redeeming your rewards, here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve had experience with:
Escape with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of an Chase cards, you can redeem your points through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In it, you’ll get access to virtually every airline and you can make use of a combination of money and points to pay for your next trip. You can even book entirely using points if you’ve got the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the entire price, you can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you tired of paying the full cost for your flights? Did you realize that when booking directly through United You have the option to pay with dollars or points? Be careful that if you do not have enough points you cannot combine points and dollars on the same flight. If you’re just a few point short United also offers the possibility of purchasing additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Take a look at JetBlue! JetBlue provides a comfortable and enjoyable flight experience with extra legroom and free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to join your points with your relatives to earn points twice as fast. Just make sure you can prove you’re really family before 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 thrifty and it’s challenging to attempt to spend thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. However, don’t be worried because we’ve been there and are here to share our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a huge one! If you’re able pay your rent with credit card, then do it! Be prepared to pay a cost, which is usually at least 3%. It may be worth it in the end in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.
Pay a medical bill
Another way to reach the spending limit is to cover the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up, ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they will repay you.
Pay off a loan
If you have any loans take into consideration making payments on them with your credit card. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Talk to your family and see if they have any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to 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 take into consideration buying all of your gifts with the credit card you have. So you’ll be able to reach the minimum spending requirement and also be prepared for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not spending more than you were contemplating to.
There are many ways to get the most from the travel credit card. accumulate miles or points that you can use towards airfares or other travel-related costs. Here are a few more ways to maximize the rewards you earn:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
Whenever you’re planning a trip, make use of the travel credit card to book your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel expenses. In addition, you’ll be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required to qualify for a credit card bonus and earn points, but you’ll also earn points or miles for those costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay for everyday costs
Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement to earn rewards is utilising your credit cards for daily expenses. This could include things like gas, groceries and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off in full every month to ensure you don’t pay interest.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange on certain kinds of purchases, including eating out or travelling. Check out the rewards program of your credit card and avail any bonus categories that match with your spending routines.
Think about the possibility of transferring your balance
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a credit card, you might want to transfer the balance to a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also help you hit the minimum amount required to earn the credit card’s bonus.
Utilize your miles and points wisely
Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize the points or miles wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and compare the benefits of different redemption options. For example using points to book a flight directly with the airline could provide you with a greater value than using them for a gift card.
Another option is to get a rewards card that allows you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This allows you to enjoy a greater variety of choices and more flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your reward to frequent flyer programs of airlines or a Hotel rewards programme. This gives you access to a larger variety of hotels, flights as well as other travel perks that aren’t offered through your credit card’s rewards program.
Additionally, try to find out if your credit card offers some perks that could save you money on travel-related costs. Many cards offer travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that can be extremely valuable when you’re traveling.
When you travel with someone else and both of you get rewards on your credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card, and be sure to keep track of the rewards you earn separately.
In the end, the most important thing to do to maximizing your rewards for travel is to be aware of your credit card’s rewards program and make sure you’re making use of your credit card in the most efficient method possible. Through all of the strategies I’ve outlined in this article, you’ll be able earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.