Home Travel 42 Favorite Travel Hacks of Ordinary People

42 Favorite Travel Hacks of Ordinary People

by SharonKurheg

If you’re reading this, chances are you have some interest in travel. In fact, it’s very possible that you have a lot of interest in it. Maybe you’re a Hyatt Globalist or have American AAdvantage Executive Platinum status. Perhaps you’ve been able to go to all 50 states or (gasp!) every country in the world.

But of course, not everyone has or is even trying to get Million Miler status. The vast majority of us don’t even fly very often – maybe once or twice a year, or not even that often. And some people are somewhere in between the two extremes – they travel regularly, but not enough to be considered in the “big league.”

Regardless of how much you travel – all the time, hardly ever, or somewhere in between, you’ve probably done some travel hacking.

Travel hacking started as working up within the existing rules set up by airlines, credit cards, hotels and rental car companies and using them to earn free flights and frequent flyer miles, free hotel stays and hotel points, and/or free/cheap/upgraded rental car. That definition continues to this day, but also includes just about anything or idea that makes traveling easier or cheaper. So a travel hack could be how to churn credit cards and not ruin your credit score…but it could also be using packing cubes to fit more into your suitcase.

Several thousand travelers were recently asked what their favorite travel hack was. These were people from every level of traveler – from those who used ultra low cost carriers like Spirit, Frontier and Allegiant on a frequent basis, to those who go to United Polaris lounges on a regular basis. Regardless, there are probably some hacks you hadn’t thought of or heard of, and might find useful.

How To Enhance Your Trip

Getting Into Lounges

  • The opportunities and fewer and further between nowadays, but trying to buy a guess pass from the lounge in question
  • Get credit cards that give you free lounge access

Packing Advice

Tips To Save Money

  • Bring an empty water bottle and refill it
  • Stay at a cheaper hotel but visit a swankier place and buy drinks at the bar – get the experience of a more luxurious hotel for just the price of a drink
  • Buy Spirit tickets at the airport to save the “Passenger Usage Charge”
  • Go to cities during the “off” season – hotels & flights may be cheaper (such as getting this discount if you go to NYC during the right time of year)
  • Hidden city fares (a.k.a. Skiplagged. We don’t do it [here’s whyand here’s an example of when it went badly wrong] but many people do)
  • Stopovers are usually cheaper than non-stops (also see “How To Enhance Your Trip”)
  • Become a travel agent (Fun fact! A long time ago – way before we started writing YMMV, Joe considered becoming a travel agent so he could take advantage of the bennies) or work for an airline or hotel chain
  • Don’t check luggage (or use Southwest, since they don’t charge for your first 2 checked bags) (this also stops you from your luggage being lost)
  • (We haven’t tried this one, but…) Switch the city/country on the Groupon app for deals specific to that place (also remember that the Entertainment Book is still around)
  • Travel by price, rather than destination (obviously, YMMV on this one – someone people want to travel, regardless. Others have specific destinations in mine)
  • Exchange your money at the ATM, not the airport (you’ll get a better rate and less fees)

Earning Points & Miles

Airport Hacks

Plane Hacks

Hotel Hacks

Miscellaneous Hacks & Tips

OK, your turn – what are some of your “every day” travel hacks?

Feature Photo: stocksnap.io

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