Introduction to Travel Hacking for Students

Raghuram Sukumar Travel 9 Comments

Welcome to the World of Travel Hacking. My guess, most of my readers might not have heard this term “Travel Hacking“.

Let me set the record Straight:  When it comes to Travel Hacking, I’m a Newbie. But, I’m going to learn while I teach and share the knowledge I gain about my travel hacking journey. We are planning for 2 Major Trips in next few months and we plan to spend as little as we can for the trip by hacking our travel.

How little? Well,  Free Flights and Free Hotels Stays is out target.

Think about going on a 10 day trip without paying for hotels and air fare.

  • $100 per night in hotel = $1000 for 10 nights.

I can just save $1000 on hotels.  Plus you can add the airfare.  Imagine, if you save the same on your trips. I’m customizing the articles for students.

So, let’s get started with Travel Hacking for students.

What is Travel Hacking?

Simplest definition of Travel Hacking : The legal way  to lower your travel costs by making use of airline miles and hotel points. This is how you get started with travel hacking.

  • Have a travel plan (Target)
  • You collect hotel points and airline miles
  • Redeem the point for low-cost to free trips

Collecting Airline Miles

I have collected about 250,000 Airline frequent flyer points using 2 different credit cards.

250,000 miles will get me  8 to 10 Round Trip Tickets from Raleigh to Dallas or possibly travel Round Trip in Business Class from USA to India.

Travel Hacking involves accumulating airline frequent flyer points (via credit cards and other means)

Am I asking you to open 10 different credit card accounts to collect frequent flyer? Nope.

You don’t have to open 10 new credit card accounts, but couple for credit cards that will give you bonus points. But, Credits cards are not the only way to collect airline miles.

For instance, car rental companies will run promotion offering 50,000 miles for 1 week car rental.

  • One week car rent is $250
  • $50,000 bonus points awarded
  • 50,000 points = Say $500

Then you can rent the card for a week to leverage the value of the points.

Basically you need to think in term of collecting miles. Anything that you spend, should get  you airline  miles.

Just like the car rental deals, there will be opportunity to collect points via several specials promotions.

Collecting Hotel Points

Airline miles will get you free round trip tickets in flights. Likewise, Hotel Points will get you free hotel stays.

When travelling,  two major expenses are Air Fares and Hotel stays.

Air Fare is takes care by Frequent Flyer miles and hotel stay can be paid by collecting hotel points.

Just like collecting airfare miles, hotels offer special deals to collect points.

Travel Hacking for Students : Hotel Points

Now,  I have given introduction to Travel Hacking. But,  most of my readers are students. Opening credits cards and spending the minimum required amount like $3000 in 3 months might not be possible and not recommended.

Credit Cards that give ton of bonus miles have annual fees and typically approved only for people with establish credit history.

But, here is a easiest way to get started with travel hacking for students – Price Match guarantee with Hotels.

Here is Price Match Guarantee from ChoiceHotels.com

choice-hotels-best-rate_6

Who Qualifies?

Any traveler who books a room on ChoiceHotels.com.

Program Benefits

If you find a lower published rate for the same hotel and accommodations for the same dates at any other qualified online source, we’ll match the rate, plus give you a FREE night.*

How it Works ( Terms Apply)

  1. Book a room on ChoiceHotels.com
  2. If you find a lower published rate for the same hotel, same date and same accommodations, submit a claim form.
  3. Within 48 hours, you will be contacted by a Choice Hotels service representative for a resolution.

If you are planning to go  on a trip with your friends and if you can find another online source where the price is less, then you get to stay free night.

This is one of the easiest way to get started with Travel Hacking for students.

Travel Hacking Tips for Students : Airline Miles

Start by opening frequent flyer miles airline account. If you are traveling from India to USA, then open a frequent flyer account and use that frequent flyer number while traveling. That will get you about 8000 points for one way trip to USA. More on how and which accounts to open in next set of articles.

Here is a rough math :  25,000 miles to one Round Trip ticket within USA.

Want more Travel Hacking Tips?

Just think about the possibility of traveling to India for vacation without paying for your air fare?

Share this post with your Facebook Friends. (atleast 1000 shares)

Let me know in the comments if you want more travel tips.

Travel Hacking Series

Comments

  1. Honestly: I blog for travel as-well-as credit and this is the most useless travel blog I have ever read.

    Does the Author have the remotest clue about how many points it takes to get 1 free night? Leave alone 10.

    Bonus miles on credit cards. There is no real point in having 250k miles spread across a dozen airlines where you can’t do anything with them. Traveling and miles is a much more complicated than this article.

    Miles for travel to/from India: Do you know miles expire? For most people miles simply expire.
    All this article sounds to me is “People have been known to get some free flights”

    As of me, I am writing this from DC and I traveled from Boston free and am staying at the Washington Court Hotel for free.

    Anyway, here is a beginners tip for travel/miles: BA has a great thing called household account where you can pool miles from everyone in the family together. You should never use BA miles for international travel but they are awesome for short trips in the US, for example you can get a bos-jfk roundtrip for about 10k miles.

    1. Vish – I didn’t say I have points in multiple cards. Even if you have points in multiple cards, provided the cards allow you to transfer points you can use it other sites. So it all comes down to planning.

      Getting free nights in hotel is not complicated at all. Provided you know where to look.

      Getting free nights by staying for 10 times is not even travel hacking. Getting to stay for free without staying in hotel is.

    2. I know miles expire but it is possible to keep you miles from expiring without traveling.

  2. Good tips but as u mentioned at last please do inform and give us more things regarding the points

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