Are you fed up of spending thousands of dollars on travel? Well, 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 score discounted or cheap flights from your dream destinations. With a bit of imagination and some information, you’ll travel for free in no time.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is about swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can then be used to buy cheap or free flight tickets. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles for hotel stays and car rental discounts.
How Does it Work?
The most effective method for success in hacking travel is taking advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and establishing a frequent flyer mile program with a limited number of airlines. When you are ready to book a flight consider the cost. If the cost is under $300, it’s best to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to book a higher-priced flight. When the flights start getting higher than $500, it’s best to review those frequent flyer accounts to see which airline can give you the most value. It all comes down to the amount of points or miles in your travel bank for every airline.
Begin by Getting Started with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets of travel hacking? Your first task is opening a credit card with a sign-up bonus. There are a lot of fantastic credit cards that provide many advantages and features. It all depends on your preferred airline, spending habits and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are excellent to hack travel
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Chase United Explorer
- JetBlue Mastercard
- Capital One Venture X
After you’ve been accepted for a credit or debit card, you’ll need to reach the limit of spending minimum in order to get the bonus. Each card has its own guidelines, so make sure to look up the details. Then, it’s all about racking up miles, and using them to book your dream trip!
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 redeem them for some nice getaway! Different credit card providers will offer different ways to redeem your points. Here are some examples from a few of the providers I’ve worked with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you own an Chase card, you can redeem your points via the Ultimate Rewards portal. In this portal you’ll have access to almost every airline and you can make use of a combination of the points as well as cash in order to pay for your next trip. You can book your flight entirely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you don’t possess enough points for the total price, you can purchase flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash with every credit card.
Are you fed up of paying full price for your flight tickets? Did you not know that when you book directly through United, you have the option of paying using either points or dollars? Be careful in case you don’t have enough points you can’t combine points and dollars for the same flight. If you’re only a couple of points short, United gives you the option to purchase additional miles.
Looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue offers passengers a relaxing and pleasant flight experience , with more 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 either dollars or points however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue is unique in that they offer a feature that allows you to pool your points together with family members to accrue points twice as fast. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re anything like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty frugal and it can be difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars in order to meet the minimum spend for a credit card bonus. But don’t fret, we’ve been through it and we’re here to share some of 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! Make sure you be charged a fee, typically around 3 percent. It might be worth it in the long run if the bonus is high enough.
Pay for a medical bill
Another way to reach the minimum spend is to pay for a medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills coming up, ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they’ll repay you.
Repay the loan
If you have any loans, consider paying them off with the credit card you have. Be sure to pay off the balance on your credit card in full , so that you don’t accrue more debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Discuss your family with them and look into any big expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they know why you’re taking the initiative.
If it’s the holiday season take into consideration buying all your gifts with cards from your credit account. This way you can hit that minimum spend and also be ready for giving gifts. Just make sure you’re not paying more than you contemplating to.
There are plenty of methods to get the most from the travel credit card. earn miles or points to spend on flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few additional ways to maximize your rewards
Pay for travel expenses using your credit card
If you’re planning a vacation, make use of the travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight, rental car, and any other travel expenses. You’ll not only be able to hit the minimum amount of spending required to earn your credit card as well, however, you’ll also earn points or miles on the costs.
Utilize your credit card to pay to pay for your everyday expenses
Another method to reach the minimum amount of spending to earn rewards is by utilising your credit cards for everyday expenditures. This could include things like food, gas and even your telephone bill. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full each month so you don’t accrue interest charges.
Take advantage of bonus categories
Some travel credit cards will offer miles or points in exchange for certain types of purchases, like dining or travel. Check out your rewards program on your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Consider a balance transfer
If you’re in the middle of a debt on a high-interest credit card, consider transferring the balance to a travel credit card with the introductory APR of 0% for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off the debt without accruing interest, and also aid in achieving the minimum spending requirement for the credit card bonus.
Use your points or miles wisely
If you’ve amassed a large amount of points or miles Make sure to utilize them in a responsible manner. Review the rewards program for your credit card and then compare the value of different redemption options. For example, using your points to purchase a flight directly through the airline may offer better value than using them to purchase an gift card.
Another tip is to use a rewards card that allows you to transfer your rewards to different loyalty program. This allows you to have a wider range of options and greater freedom when it comes to redeeming your rewards. For instance, you might be capable of transferring your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or a reward program for hotels. This will give you access to a greater selection of hotels, flights and other travel benefits which are not offered through the rewards program on your credit card.
Additionally, try to determine whether your credit card has any perks that can help you save money on travel costs. A lot of credit cards provide travel insurance as well as rental car insurance baggage protection, and other benefits that can be invaluable when you travel.
If you’re traveling with someone else each of you will be able to get rewards on your own credit card. Make sure you don’t split the cost on the same card and make sure you keep track of 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 know your credit card’s rewards program and ensure that you’re using it in the most efficient method. Utilizing an array of strategies I’ve listed that you can earn rewards fast, exchange them for valuable travel experiences, and enjoy a wide assortment of travel-related perks.