Are you fed up of spending a fortune on airfare? Then, there’s a good news! Travel hacking could 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 you can use to score discounted or complimentary flights for your desired destinations. With a bit of creativity and some insider information, you’ll travel for free within a matter of minutes.
The Basics of Travel Hacking
Travel hacking is all about swapping credit card sign-up bonus as well as incentives to earn airline miles. These miles can later be used to pay for discount or no-cost flights. Some credit cards also permit you to use miles to pay for hotel stays or rental car discounts.
How Does it Work?
The key to successful hacking your travel plans is to take advantage of the sign-up bonuses for credit cards and establishing a frequent flyer mile program for a specific group of airlines. When it’s time to book a flight consider the cost. If the cost is less than $300, it’s usually better to pay in cash and use your miles to pay to take a more costly flight. If the prices start to rise over $500, you’ll need to review those frequent flyer accounts and find out which airline will give you the best price. All it boils down to is the number of points or miles in your travel bank for every airline.
Start with Travel Hacking
Are you interested in learning the secrets to hacking travel? Your first task is opening a credit card that comes with a welcome bonus. There are many great credit cards that offer various benefits and features. It depends on the type of airline, your spending habits, and the features that are most crucial to you.
Top Credit Card Picks
Here are a few credit cards that are great for travel hacking:
- 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 minimum spend limit in order to qualify for the bonus. Every credit card has its own set of rules, so make sure to check for this information. From there you can begin to rack up miles, and using them to plan your dream trip!
Are you ready to set sail with your points?
Now that you’ve built up the points balance, you’re ready to cash them in for some delicious getaway! Different credit card companies will have different methods for redeeming your points. Here are a few examples from some of the companies I’ve had experience with:
Take a trip with Chase Ultimate Rewards
If you’re a holder of a Chase cards, you are able to use your points to redeem them through the Ultimate Rewards portal. In the portal, you’ll have access to almost every airline and you can combine money and points to pay for your travel. You can even book completely on points if you have the funds to pay for it! Sometimes even if you do not have enough points to cover the total cost, you still can buy flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and pay the balance in cash using the credit card of your choice.
Are you fed up of paying full price for flights? Did you know that when you book directly through United, you have the option to pay with either points or dollars? But, be careful in case you do not have enough points you aren’t able to combine dollars and points on flights. If you’re only a couple of points away, United gives you the option of buying additional miles.
Are you looking for a domestic flight? Look no further than JetBlue! JetBlue provides an enjoyable and comfortable travel experience that includes extra legroom as well as free snacks. In addition, their booking procedure is like United’s which allows you to book with either JetBlue dollar or points, however, not both. The difference is that JetBlue has a unique feature that lets you combine your points with your relatives to earn points twice as quickly. Be sure to establish that you’re a real family member prior to trying to hack into the system.
Reach that Minimum Spend
If you’re like me and my travel buddy Becca I’m sure you’re pretty economical and it’s difficult to think of spending thousands of dollars to hit the minimum amount required to earn a credit card bonus. Don’t worry because we’ve been there and are here to share some of our tricks and tips.
Pay your rent (if you can)
This is a big one! If you’re able pay your rent using a credit card, do 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 a medical bill
Another way to reach the required spending is to cover an medical bill. If you don’t have any medical bills in the near future, ask your relatives if you could pay them for theirs, and they’ll reimburse you.
Pay off the loan
If you’re in the middle of a loan, consider repaying them using your credit card. Make sure to pay off the credit card balance in full , so that you don’t accrue additional debt.
Ask family members for assistance
Ask your family members to determine if they’ve got any large expenses coming up that you can help pay for. Be sure to be sure that you’re able to trust the person and they are aware of the reason for doing it.
If you’re celebrating the holidays take into consideration buying all your gifts with the credit card you have. In this way, you’ll meet the minimum spending limit and also be ready to give gifts. Make sure that you’re not paying more than you already planning to.
There are plenty of ways to get the most out of the travel credit card. accrue points or miles to be used towards flights or other travel-related expenses. Here are a few more suggestions for maximising the rewards you earn:
Make travel reservations using your credit card
When you’re planning your next trip, use your travel credit card for booking your hotel, flight or rental car, as well as any other travel-related expenses. Not only will you be able to meet the minimum amount of spending required for your credit card reward and earn points, however, you’ll also earn points or miles for these expenses.
Use your credit card for everyday expenses
Another way to meet the minimum spend and earn points is using your credit card to pay for daily costs. This could include items like groceries, gas, and even your phone bill. Make sure you pay off the balance each month in full so you don’t accumulate interest.
Benefit from bonus categories
Many travel credit cards offer bonus points or miles for certain types of purchases, such as eating out or traveling. Make sure you review the rewards program of your credit card and take advantage of any bonus categories that align with your spending habits.
Think about a balance transfer
If you have existing outstanding debt due to a high-interest credit card, you might want to transfer that balance onto a travel credit card with a 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. This will allow you to pay off your debt without accruing interest. It will also help you hit the minimum spend for the credit card bonus.
Make use of your miles or points wisely
When you’ve earned a significant amount of miles or points Make sure to utilize them wisely. Review the rewards program for your credit card, and evaluate the worth of various redemption options. For example you can use points to book a flight directly through the airline may offer better return than using them for the purchase of a gift card.
Another tip is to use an rewards card that permits you to transfer reward points into other loyalty programmes. This will let you have a wider range of choices and more flexibility when you want to redeem your rewards. For instance, you might be able to transfer your reward to an airline’s frequent flyer program or Hotel rewards programme. This will give an access larger variety of hotels, flights, and other travel perks that may not be accessible through the rewards program on your credit card.
Also, determine whether your credit card has certain benefits that will save you money on travel-related costs. Some cards offer travel insurance and rental car insurance, baggage protection, and other benefits that can be very beneficial when traveling.
If you’re traveling with a friend, both of you can earn rewards using your own credit card. Make sure you don’t share the costs on the same card, and be sure to track your rewards in a separate manner.
Overall, the key to reaping the maximum benefits from your rewards for travel is to be aware of the rewards program of your credit card and make sure you’re using it in the most efficient method. Through an array of methods I’ve described in this article, you’ll be able get rewards in a short time, use rewards for valuable travel experiences and benefit from a wide variety of travel benefits.