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Are you tired of paying a fortune on airfare? Good news! Travel hacking is the answer to your travel-related problems. It’s an exciting way to convert credit card bonus and sign-up incentives into miles which can be used to obtain discounted or cheap flights from your desired destinations. With a bit of imagination and a little bit of insider knowledge, you can be jet-setting for free within a matter of minutes.

The Basics of Travel Hacking

Travel hacking is the art of swapping credit card sign-up bonus and incentives for airline miles. These miles can later be used to purchase cheap or free flight tickets. Certain credit cards let you redeem miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car discounts.

How Does it Work?

The secret to success in hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the credit card sign-up bonus and building out a frequent flyer mile program on a select group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight, evaluate the cost. If the price is less than $300, it’s best to pay cash and use your miles to pay for a more expensive flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to check your frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the most value. It all boils down to the amount of points or miles you have in your travel bank for each airline.

Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking

Are you ready to discover the secrets to travel hacking? The first step is to open a credit card with a sign-up offer. There are plenty of great credit cards with various features and benefits. 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 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 card, you’ll need to reach the spending limit for minimum expenditure in order to receive the bonus. Every card has different guidelines, so make sure to look up the details. From there it’s all about building up miles and using them to book your dream trip!

Are you ready to go on a jet-setting with your ideas?

Now that you’ve built up the points balance, you’re ready to redeem them for some sweet travel! Different credit card providers will have different methods of redeeming your points. Here are some examples from a few of the providers I have experience with:

Getaway with Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you own an Chase card, you can use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. Within it, you’ll have access to almost every airline. You can use a combination of money and points to pay for your trip. You can even book completely on points if you have the balance for it! Sometimes even if you don’t have enough points to cover the full cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance cash using every credit card.

 

United

Are you fed up of paying full price for flights? Did you not know that when you book directly through United you can choose the option of paying with either points or dollars? Butbe aware that if you don’t have enough points you can’t combine dollars and points for flights. If you’re a few points away, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.

JetBlue

Looking for a flight within the United States? You should look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience with extra legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is similar to that of United Airlines, allowing customers to book using either JetBlue points or dollars but not both. But, JetBlue offers a distinct feature that allows you to combine your points with your family members and earn points twice as quickly. Be sure to verify that you are a family member before trying to hack the system.

Reach that Minimum Spend

If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca You’re probably quite frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to reach the minimum amount required to earn the credit card bonus. Don’t worry as we’ve done it 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 to pay your rent using credit card, go for it! Be prepared to be charged a fee, typically about 3%. It may be worth it over the long term in the event that the bonus is substantial enough.

Make a payment on a medical expense

Another way to reach the required spending is to cover the medical bills. If you don’t have any medical bills due, ask your family members to pay them for theirs, and they can repay you.

Make a payment to pay off the loan

If you’re in the middle of a loan you owe, think about paying them off with the credit card you have. Just make sure you pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.

Ask family for help

Discuss your family with them and see if they have any large expenses coming up that you can contribute for. Make sure that you are able to trust the person and they know why you’re doing it.

Buy presents

If you’re in the middle of the holiday season take into consideration buying all your gifts using cards from your credit account. In this way, you’ll hit that minimum spend and be ready for giving gifts. Make sure that you’re not spending more than you already contemplating to.

There are plenty of ways to get the most from the travel credit card. You can accumulate miles or points that you can use towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are some additional suggestions for maximising the rewards you earn:

Pay for travel expenses using your credit card

If you’re planning a trip, use you travel credit card for booking your flight, hotel or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. In addition, you’ll achieve the minimum spend to earn your credit card bonus as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on the costs.

Make use of your credit card to pay for all your daily expenses

Another way to meet the minimum spending requirement and earn points is making use of your credit card for every day expenses. This could include things like gas, groceries, and even your phone bill. Just make sure to pay the balance off each month in full so you don’t pay interest.

Take advantage of bonus categories

Some travel credit cards will offer miles or bonus points for certain types of purchases, like eating out or traveling. Make sure you review your credit card’s rewards program and make use of any bonus categories that align 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, think about transferring the balance to the travel credit card which has an introductory rate of 0% for balance transfer. This will let you pay off the debt without accruing interest. It will also aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.

Use your points or miles prudently

Once you’ve accumulated a substantial amount of miles or points, be sure to use them wisely. Check out the rewards program on your credit card and then compare the benefits of different redemption options. For instance you can use points to book a flight directly through the airline may give you a better value than using them to purchase a gift card.

Another option is to get an rewards card that permits you to transfer rewards to different loyalty program. This will allow you to get a wider selection of options and greater flexibility in redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be eligible to transfer your rewards to the frequent flyer program of an airline or a reward program for hotels. This gives you access to a wider variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be offered through the rewards program of your credit card.

Additionally, try to determine the card’s benefits. any perks that can reduce your travel expenses. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance, rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that are invaluable when you travel.

Finally, when you’re traveling with someone else, both of you can earn rewards using your own credit card. Just remember that you can’t divide the cost with the same card, and be sure to track the rewards you earn separately.

In the end, the most important thing to do to reaping the maximum benefits from your travel rewards is to understand your credit card’s rewards program and make sure you’re using this program in the most effective method possible. Utilizing an array of strategies I’ve listed, you’ll be able to earn rewards quickly, redeem rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide range of travel perks.