6 Ways to Maximise Credit Card Points for Luxury Travel

December 04, 2023

Girl on high end hotel

Travelling the world in luxury can be an enthralling experience. It can also be a very costly endeavour.

From first-class tickets to five-star hotels, travelling luxuriously can easily equate to thousands of dollars drained from your savings account. Or worse, getting stuck knee-deep in debt for months on end.

Thankfully, there are a few ways you can make your luxury holiday a reality without breaking the bank—and one of the best ways to do just that is by taking advantage of your bank’s credit card points.

Many credit card providers offer a points system to customers who regularly use and pay their credit card bills. These points can be converted into rewards that feature a selection of products or services, ranging from home appliances to spa vouchers.

These points may also be converted into airline miles and hotel stays, which are the core necessities when travelling.

If you have a credit card with its own point system, you should strive to use it often to score more points. This article will show you some useful ways you can maximise these points.

Let’s begin!

1. Plan Your Itinerary Relative to Reward Availability

If you want to capitalise on your miles and points, it’s important to get a good grasp of the card provider’s rewards system early on.

Some banks only feature a few flights on specific airlines, with some even in limited capacity. United Airlines, Qantas, and Cathay Pacific are some of the numerous airline companies that have these partnerships with credit card providers.

If you’re flying with Qantas, for example, they may deem you eligible for a free upgrade given you have enough points.

This upgrade can move you from economy to premium economy or business class with no extra payment on your part—just points accumulated from credit card payments. Learn more about how to access this perk.

Hotel chains also work with a similar reward model, incentivising travellers to stay in their hotel through their various credit card loyalty points programs.

While most of these airlines cover routes to tourist-friendly destinations, they do not apply to all cases of when you want to fly.

Given this, be sure to plot your itinerary in advance so that you can optimally use both your flight and hotel rewards. Having a clear plan of action can help keep you concentrated and ensure that all your points are allocated in the most cost-effective way possible.

2. Look into Sign-Up Bonuses

If you’re in the market for new credit cards, be sure to look into and take advantage of the signup bonuses that credit card companies may offer.

Many credit card providers offer enticing sign-up bonuses to ensure that customers use their credit cards. These points can go as high as 100,000, which can be enough to save you hundreds of dollars in your travel outright.

However, that high of a sign-up bonus usually indicates that the credit card company may require a higher minimum spending requirement than average. The standard amount of points you can expect is around 50,000 points.

Customers can even gain additional bonus points if they manage to hit a minimum spending amount by a certain date, like three months after obtaining the card.

So shop around and pick a provider that best aligns with your travel goals and spending habits. You can also wait a bit longer if the bonus is currently unfavourable, as some credit card companies offer limited-time deals with better rates from time to time.

3. Spend Strategically

To accumulate enough credit card points, you have to use your credit card often. That said, you shouldn’t swipe at everything you see and expect a nice holiday by the end of the year. You have to be strategic with your purchases.

Some travel credit cards are built to cater to specific categories. For example, certain credit card providers offer cards that earn bonus points for travelling and dining. Other credit cards may offer cash-back rewards of up to 5% instead.

If you have multiple credit cards, be sure to use the appropriate credit card for each transaction. Being methodical about when to use your credit card helps you accumulate points faster, which can translate to a faster time achieving that much-needed luxury stay.

4. Be a Responsible Credit Card User

It’s important to look at your finances as a whole before swiping away on random products to rack up points.

One way to maximise the utility of your credit card is by being a responsible user. You don’t want to overspend your budget and end up falling behind on bills in the next repayment period.

Failure to pay your credit card doesn’t only tarnish your credit history, but it also leaves you susceptible to high balances and interest rates. This can indirectly negate the points that you’ve accumulated.

As such, be sure to pay bills on time and fully. You don’t want to financially strain yourself to acquire points. Your financial well-being should always remain a top priority.

5. Watch The Points Expiry Date

It’s easy to get into the groove of racking up points to reach your target goal. But bear in mind that these points do expire at some point, leaving all your hard work accumulating these points in the gutter.

Therefore, you must know the expiration policy of your credit card rewards program by heart. Each program has its own set of rules—some points might expire annually, while others could have a longer life span.

Hoarding your points also can make you miss out on time-limited deals that could help you achieve the luxurious travel you’ve envisioned. Don’t let your stinginess get in the way of enjoying your points!

6. Take Advantage of Special Promotions

From time to time, your credit card provider will offer special deals and promotions that could help you in your ultimate goal of saving points to travel.

These deals could come in various forms: some could be points multipliers, while others could be discounted points on certain rewards.

If you find an enticing enough deal, especially one that can help you travel more affordably, don’t hesitate to get that offer.

A lot of the time these deals are tucked away in shopping portals or through email newsletters, so know where to look so you can snag them when the time comes.

Managing your finances is a uniquely personal approach, but there are ways you can strategise to save more of your hard-earned money.

If you want to make the most out of your spending, these promotions can help you, but be sure to know for a fact that you’ll use the reward.

Happy saving!

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Hello, I'm Lorita. Hoping to inspire you to explore and create things that make life a bit more fun and beautiful.