How to Earn Travel Points for Beginners

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If you’re looking to travel for free or highly discounted, there are several easy ways. This post shows how to earn travel points for beginners.

how to earn travel points

Are you dreaming of your next adventure but don’t want to break the bank? One of the best ways to save money on travel is by earning travel points.

We’ve been traveling all over the world using points for the past three years. We’ve earned over $15,000 in FREE travel by earning travel points through these easy ways.

We’ll explore how to earn travel points, including credit card sign-up bonuses, everyday spending in points categories, and more. By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to your next destination in no time.

This post is all about how to earn travel points for beginners so you can save thousands on your travels!

How to Earn Travel Points for Beginners

Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses

how to use credit card points for travel

Credit card sign-up bonuses are one of the easiest ways to earn travel points. Many credit cards offer introductory bonuses when you sign up, worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars in points.

There are a lot of common misconceptions that opening up a lot of credit cards is wrong. However, if you are a responsible borrower (i.e., you pay off your credit card debt in full every single month and only purchase what you can afford), there is no harm to you opening multiple cards.

You usually have to spend some money within a specific time frame, such as $3,000 in the first three months, to earn these points. You will receive the bonus points in your account once you spend the $3,000 on the card (before the first 90 days pass).

For example, when we signed up for our favorite travel credit card, we earned 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in the first 90 days. These 60,000 points paid for our one-way flights from Los Angeles to Bangkok worth nearly $700. Just for signing up for the card.

Of course, once we have the card, we continue to earn points on the miscellaneous categories. The bonus is where you can make the largest impact on earning a large sum of points all at once.

Everyday Spending in Points Categories

Another easy way to earn travel points is using credit cards with bonus points on everyday spending categories, such as dining, groceries, or gas. You can accumulate points quickly by using these cards for your regular spending.

If you’re not interested in signing up for a new card or don’t quite have a high enough credit score, you can use this method with the cards you already have. Log in to your credit card and check the Rewards section to see what categories you can earn points in. Use the optimal card for each situation and start racking up the points!

For example, some credit cards (XX) offer 3x points on dining and travel purchases and 2x on groceries and gas. You will earn two or three points per dollar spent on these categories. If you buy $100 worth of groceries, you can earn 300 points on your credit card.

Adding Your Loyalty Number to Bookings

how to get frequent flyer miles for free

When booking travel, add your loyalty number to your reservation. This will ensure you earn points for the flight, hotel, or rental car booking.

This earns points and starts working your way towards a higher-tiered status (which comes with more benefits!). With some platforms, you can earn bonus points just for signing up with their loyalty program and booking your first stay (on top of the points you will earn). If you start staying with one hotel or booking with the same airline (or in the same alliance), you’ll start to see the points add up for free stays, flights, or upgrades!

This is absolutely free to do and is the easiest way to start earning points for travel you are already taking.

It’s important to note that you may need to book directly with the airline or hotel to earn points rather than booking through a third-party site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Booking Travel for Friends and Family

how to earn airline miles with credit card

We have taken advantage of this unique tip for the last few years. We always book our group trips with friends and family. That means we book everyone’s flights, hotels, and transportation for a trip we are all going on. We tell everyone the totals, and they pay us back directly. This is a great way to get all those extra points for the bookings on our credit cards and earn the points but not have to pay the sums.

We use it as a travel planning “fee” for doing all the research and planning for the trip. It’s free for them and can go a long way for us.

For example, if I book flights for my parents to meet us in Europe for $3,000 on our Amex Platinum card, we’ll earn 15,000 points on that purchase alone!

Referring Friends and Family to Cards

how to get airline miles quickly

If you already have a rewards credit card, you can earn even more points by referring friends and family to apply for the card. Many credit cards offer referral bonuses when you refer someone to the card via a specific link and they are approved. These bonuses can be worth thousands of points, making it an easy way to earn extra points.

The easiest way to get this is if you are a couple and one of you is applying for a new card. You can share your referral link with your significant other, making it easy to earn extra points! They likely will get a bonus too!

Check the Extra Benefits

how to earn credit card points fast

When you have a travel rewards credit card, it’s important to take advantage of all the benefits that come with it. These benefits include lounge access, travel insurance, and more. Using these benefits and perks, you can save money on travel and make your trip more comfortable and enjoyable.

Even if you don’t have a travel-specific card, check the bonus categories each quarter or every so often. Amex offers deals for money back on certain purchases if you add it to your card, and Chase offers different bonus categories each quarter.

This post was all about how to earn travel points even if you are a beginner!

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Hi there!

We’re Alicia & Nate, a couple that traveled full-time for 3 years straight. We are now living in a cozy little apartment in Albania. We have a passion for exploring new places and trying new foods.

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