Stick with me through this short post, and I’m going to show you how even the laziest travel hacker can save $500 on their next flight!
After traveling to 80+ countries and strategically using credit cards to save over $20,000 on airfare, Kara and I believe a good travel credit card is a tool that all financially responsible travelers should be using to their advantage.
I could talk for days about all of the different strategies we’ve used to earn free travel, but in a nutshell, our strategy boils down to maximizing travel credit card rewards and learning the ins and outs of the different frequent flyer programs so we can squeeze as much value as possible out of every point!
As I’ve continued to tell anyone who will listen about these strategies, I’ve come to realize a couple things:
- Some people don’t have the time or the motivation to learn the ins and outs of every frequent flyer program.
- The idea of signing up for multiple credit cards makes people really uncomfortable.
If you fall into one or both of the categories above, this post is for you! Just because you don’t have the time to start a new hobby, it doesn’t mean you should miss out on all of the benefits of a great travel credit card. I want to show you how almost anyone can quickly and easily save $500 on their next flight (no travel hacking required).
The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card [learn more] currently has a 50,000 point welcome offer. This means if you sign up for the card and spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months of opening your account, you’ll earn 50,000 Venture Miles. Each Venture Mile is worth $.01 when redeemed for travel purchases. Therefore, 50,000 miles [(50,000 x $.01) = $500] is equivalent to $500 worth of free travel.
The great thing about Venture Miles is that they’re dead simple to use. In fact, I’m going to show you exactly how you can use them to save $500 on your next flight in just 30 seconds.
All you need to do is use your Venture Rewards card to purchase ANY flight. You don’t need to purchase this flight through a special portal. You can literally buy the flight from anywhere. If you prefer to purchase your flights through an online travel agency such as Kayak.com, great. Buy your flight there. If you prefer to purchase your flight directly from the airline, that works too! It doesn’t matter how or where you purchase your flight, as long as you use your card.
Once you’ve purchased your flight, you have 90 days to use the 50,000 points that you earned from the welcome bonus to erase $500 of travel expenses from your account. Here’s the step by step process.
Step 1: Login to your account
Step 2: Click on your mileage balance (you should see around 50,000 points in your account after meeting the minimum spending requirement)
Step 3: Click the button says “Redeem Travel Purchases”
Step 4: You’ll see a list of all the travel-related purchases you’ve made with the card in the last 90 days. Choose which one you want to erase and click “Redeem”.
That’s it! Four steps to saving $500 on your next flight. You don’t have to learn a single thing about frequent flyer miles. You don’t have to worry about blackout dates or figuring out how to book any type of special flight. All you have to do is sign up for a credit card, meet the minimum spend, and use that credit card to purchase your next flight!
If you like the simplicity of the strategy I laid out in this post, learn more about the Capital One Venture Rewards card by clicking the link below!
Can I Use My Miles for Other Travel Purchases?
Here’s exactly what Capital One says counts as a “travel” purchase.
“Purchases made from airlines, hotels, rail lines, car rental agencies, limousine services, bus lines, cruise lines, taxi cabs, travel agents and timeshares are generally considered to be travel purchases and availability for redemption is based on the merchant category code assigned to them by the merchant. Capital One is not responsible for how merchants assign these codes.”
Is There a Minimum Amount of Miles I Can Redeem?
One of the great things about this card is that it has no limits on the minimum amount of points you can redeem for a travel purchase. Unless you’re redeeming your miles to cover a partial amount of a bigger purchase, then the minimum amount you can redeem is 2,500 ($25)
Do I Earn Miles for Spending on This Card?
Yes, you’ll earn 2 points for every $1 you spend on the card, and there is no cap on the number of miles you can earn.
Will My Miles Ever Expire?
As long as your account is open, your miles will never expire.
Does the Card Offer Any Other Benefits?
Tons! But I wanted to keep this post short so I didn’t go into all of them.
- No foreign transaction fees
- Earn 2x miles on every $1 you spend on the card
- Earn 10x miles on every $1 you spend on hotels at hotels.com/venture
- Receive up to a $100 application credit when you use your card to pay for your Global Entry or TSA
- PreCheck application
- Travel incident insurance
- Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver Insurance
Is There an Annual Fee?
Yes, the annual fee is $95, but it’s waived for the first year.
Do you have other questions about this card? Let me know in the comments below!