Passports & Travel Hacking

Sweetie and I have passports!  They just came in the mail today and I can't even tell you all how excited this makes me.  I have been US bound for the past 10 years, as I was busy in the world of childcare, diapers, foster care, and life.  But now that Sweetie is seven years old, she has become a great travel buddy.   We took a trip to Georgia last April and she did great, so I wanted us to be prepared to do a more serious international trip just as soon as I can save up enough money to make it happen.

However, I did prioritize scheduling a bucket list trip for myself to Santiago, Chile that I will be going on soon to celebrate my 40th birthday.  I am planning on doing an eight-day trip by. my. self.  Sweetie's grandparents are willing to take her for the week and I am going to go be an adult, sleep in, go to restaurants, and hopefully do some art.

However, I am still a single working Mom, so have to be creative about paying for all of this wonderful-ness.  Welcome, to the wonderful world of travel hacking.

Okay, here are the basics, in December of 2018, I came across a Facebook page called 10XTravel and discovered Travel hacking. Which at its core is attempting to get as many travel miles as possible for free travel, without going into debt or paying high fees. The main way to get big chunks of miles is by signing up for travel cards that have a bonus upon signing up, spend the minimum amount of money, paying off the balance in full every month and then canceling the card before any fees are due (many cards waive the annual fee for the first year – read the fine print). The exact details are different for each card, but that’s the main premise.

The first card I signed up for, I had to spend $4,000 in 3 months, and then I got 50,000 travel miles, which translated into $500 in travel $, with which I booked our flights and hotel in Georgia.

The hardest part is meeting the “minimum spend,” which means you have to put $2,000-5000 on the card in a 3 month period. I found the best way for me is to put all of my regular bills (insurance, internet, R's after-school program) and do all my regular spending (gas, groceries, target runs) on the card I am attempting to meet the minimum spend on. I also am sure to keep track to make sure I will meet the mark by the 3-month deadline. If I am not going to meet it, there are ways to pay rent, car payments & student loans by credit card as well for a small fee (I can show you all of that). And then paying it back every month.

After joining the group above, and getting the e-book, I signed up for some more cards, about 1-2 a month, met the minimum spend and then paid them off. Right now, I have 130,000 miles waiting to be spent and 40,000 more about to post to my account.

If this is something you want to check out, check out the Facebook group and ask me any questions you want.

Worst case, you’ll have a new credit card that you’ll cancel in a few months and go on your merry way. Best case, you can be my new travel buddy.

Please use these links to check this out, so I get a little bump for referring you!  I have personally used all of them and they work as my paid for the trip to Atlanta, Georgia, and Santiago, Chile is a testament to.

Capital One Venture® Rewards - 
Chase Sapphire Preferred -
Chase Bank Accounts -

I can't wait to share Chile pictures when I get back!