How You Can Fly Anywhere In The USA For Less Than $50

Traveling is arguably the most effective way on the planet to develop as a person, learn about yourself, and discover what it means to be human. This idea has been written about dozens of times throughout the manosphere for one simple reason. It’s an undeniable truth.

Traveling offers the modern-man a chance to get out of his comfort zone, eliminate the distractions of day-to-day life, and learn how to be self-reliant. However, there is one major catch. Traveling is really fucking expensive.

Which means that the vast majority of men have to prioritize travel with other financial goals such as saving for retirement, starting a business, or putting money aside to purchase a home.

Enter travel hacking

Travel Hacking in the USA

Travel hacking is the process of earning tons of frequent flyer miles through things like credit card sign-ups and other promotions and using those miles to book tons of really cheap travel.

Think of it like extreme couponing, only its 10x more lucrative (literally), requires a fraction of the time, and it doesn’t have the social stigma associated with clipping coupons and storing a bunch of junk in your basement.

The concept of travel hacking is hard to grasp at first but it really is quite simple. In fact, the basic travel hacking process can be broken down in to 5 simple steps.

1. Apply for a rewards credit card that gives you some sort of sign-up bonus (2 free flights, 50,000 points, free hotel nights, etc.)
2. Complete the required steps to earn the bonus (usually just a minimum spending requirement)
3. Use your sign-up bonus points/miles to book cheap travel
4. Cancel the credit card before the annual fee comes due
5. Repeat as needed

It’s that easy.

The most extreme travel hackers repeat this process ~15-20 times per year and end up taking multiple international trips annually for pennies on the dollar. (I just did a weekend trip to Amsterdam for less than $200.)

Amsterdam Trip

Why does this work?

Put simply, travel hacking works because it allows you to beat the credit card companies at their own game.

Credit card companies make a large portion of their profits by exploiting people who are financially irresponsible. They provide a product that allows you to live above your means, use marketing tactics to make you believe that you can afford anything (pay attention to their commercials, you’ll see what I mean), then make you their slave by charging outrageous interest rates on the debt that you inevitably accrue.

And it works, and works incredibly well. So well that the average American household has $15,611 of credit card debt. With typical interest rates on this debt hovering around 15%, this is an incredibly profitable business for these companies.

Knowing this, credit card companies offer large sign-up bonuses in the form of frequent flyer miles, cash back, etc. on their cards to encourage people to sign up.

These bonuses are essentially a form of bait to lure you in to the trap of credit card debt.

Travel hacking works by systematically mining these bonuses while avoiding the trap of falling into debt.

Won’t this destroy your credit score?

Inside of Airport

No, and anyone who tells you otherwise has no idea how credit scores work.

Here is a quick rundown on how applying for a large number of credit cards can affect your credit score.

Every time you apply for a credit card (or any form of credit) your credit score will dip by ~2-5 points according to FICO. There is a long and somewhat complicated answer for why this happens, but let’s be honest, you couldn’t care less. This is the way that credit scoring works and neither you nor I can change that.

(If you are actually curious, google “travel hacking effect on credit”. You’ll find a ton of articles that support my claim.)

This ~2-5 point dip is short-lived and is easily offset by the positive effects of having another credit account on your credit report. Mainly the increased amount of available credit (which reduces your credit utilization) and the increased number of on-time payments that you will be making.

I have personally seen my credit score rise more than 80 points since I have started travel hacking.

So what’s the catch?

Airplane Wing

The catch is that this only works when you use your new credit cards responsibly.

If you end up spending beyond your means then you have fallen in to their trap.

So you need to take a long, hard look in the mirror and be brutally honest with yourself before getting started. If you’re the type of person that can’t control your spending then travel hacking is definitely not for you.

Here is an actionable plan to help you fly for cheap

As we discussed above, the first step of travel hacking is to apply for a rewards credit card that gives you some sort of sign-up bonus. There are dozens of these cards out there so let’s start with perhaps the most basic one on the market. The Barclays Arrival Plus.

The Barclays Arrival Plus offers 40,000 miles as a sign-up bonus after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. These miles can be redeemed at a rate of 1 penny a piece to erase travel expenses made within 120 days.

So you can erase a $300 airline ticket purchase with 30,000 points, a $55 taxi fare with 5,500 points, etc. You get the point. You also get a 10% bonus on any points redeemed, meaning that the 40,000 sign-up bonus points give you $440 in travel statement credits.

These statement credits can be used to erase just about any travel expense. Airline tickets, hotel rooms, taxis, Uber fares, you name it.

Another major advantage of this card is that you can take advantage of the signup bonus before you meet the $3,000 minimum spending requirement. Simply use the card to pay for your trip and erase the charges after you have earned the bonus points.

The Barclays Arrival Plus has no fee for the first year, meaning you could cancel the card 11 months after opening it and end up paying nothing out of pocket. So in some cases you might actually be able to get your US flight literally for free.

Again, a concept that defies traditional logic but is really quite simple. That’s a lot to digest at once, so let’s boil it down to the basics.

San Francisco Golden Gate Bridge

The Spark Notes version

1. Open a Barclays Arrival Plus credit card
2. Use the Barclays Arrival Plus to pay for your next flight
3. After meeting the $3,000 minimum spending requirement, use your bonus miles to erase $440+ of your airfare charge
4. Cancel the card 11 months after applying to avoid paying any sort of fees

Simple, effective, and literally free. You won’t pay a dime to use this strategy.

And as I mentioned before, you can continually repeat this process to earn an endless amount of points and miles and start traveling the world for next to nothing.

Start your journey to becoming a better man today.

Read More: 14 Tips To Travel Cheaply Around the World

66 thoughts on “How You Can Fly Anywhere In The USA For Less Than $50”

  1. I was just thinking about getting card with travel perks. How is the Capitol One card that they advertise so heavily?

    1. I carry the 1.5% Cap One cash back card, I definitely recommend it. I run all my purchases through it and pay off the balance at the end of every week. I also calculate a rough daily balance charge (interest/100/365/Xbalance) to ensure I’m always staying ahead. It also gives your credit score a nice boost.
      Say I make a $750 purchase. I get 750*0.015 back in cash credited to my account the day the purchase clears.= $11.25
      Daily Interest on this purchase is 16.9/100/365*750=0.34.
      Now let’s say I carry this balance for 7 days.
      0.34*7=2.38 interest paid.
      11.25 (cash back)-2.38 (accrued interest)=8.87 profit to me.
      My recommendation. Figure out daily interest rate versus reward and ensure you are paying off your balances before interest paid exceeds reward earned.

      1. The last time I did the calculations, cash back cards were better than any other “reward” card there is. Most reward cards tie you to a particular company or service. I have an AMEX that earns me 3% on specific purchases like gasoline, office supplies, telephone, and 1% on anything else. It is a much better deal than anything that gives me “points” that are only good on one airline.
        But I never pay interest or carry a balance, so I didn’t really understand that part of your post.

        1. Cash back cards are almost always inferior to travel cards from a value standpoint. The one I mentioned effectively earns 2.2% on everything you buy to be used toward travel. No ties to any sort of rewards programs so you are definitely going to be able to cash in your points.
          The cards that offer things like bonus categories are also a sucker bet. Yeah, it sounds great to earn 3% on certain categories, but unless more than 50% of your entire expenses are on gas, office supplies, or telephone (trust me, they’re not even close) then the 2.2% is a much better return.

    2. Arrival plus is far superior to any of the capital one cards. It effectively gives you 2.2% back toward any form of travel. Even if you don’t travel at all you can get cash out by booking refundable airfare, using points to erase the charge, then canceling your ticket.

    1. no you don’t you fag. if thats u in the pic be ashamed cus u look like shit and there is no way u get layed.

  2. “Simple, effective, and literally free. You won’t pay a dime to use this strategy.”
    Except the $3,000 minimum necessary to get $440 of benefits.
    This reminds me of when women tell me about how much they “saved” while shopping because they got everything on sale. You didn’t save anything, sweetheart. You spent a bunch of money you probably didn’t have because the store made you feel better about doing it.
    If you spend that kind of money – $1,000 -every month anyway, maybe this works for you, but don’t kid yourself that this is “free.” It’s not free just because you don’t pay a card fee or interest – and you’ll likely pay some interest. Repeat after me: there is no free lunch. If something seems too good to be true, it is.

    1. not if you pay all your expenses with the credit card and then use your paycheck to pay the card. this is nothing women shopping

    2. If you don’t spend enough to put $1000 on your credit card in a month, you aren’t likely to be able to afford to fly someplace anyway.
      But there are all kinds of things you could do
      Buy your christmas gifts early or open the card that time of year
      Charge a $500 night out with your friends to your card and have them pay you cash.
      You were probably going to update some part of your wardrobe this year anyway, just do it in the next 3 months
      If you know you have an expensive day coming up (buying a car/furniture/matress, bachelor party) open the card before the event.

      1. “If you don’t spend enough to put $1000 on your credit card in a month, you aren’t likely to be able to afford to fly someplace anyway.”
        Or, you can afford to fly any place you want, because you don’t.

        1. Bam! Fuck credit cards. They’re just a jew tool. Sure if you pay them off in time you’re all good, but the jews bank (literally) on the few who fall behind. Fuck em. Cash is king.
          And I don’t give a fuck about credit rating, so anyone commenting about getting that up can stick it where the sun don’t shine.

        2. I don’t get the not-so-subtle antisemitism that one encounters on this site from time to time.
          You know, from what people tell me about Israel, it seems to be one of the most red-pill, no-nonsense country in the Western hemisphere.

        3. It’s not the individuals anyone is against (in general, I assume), it’s the corporations, the banks, the media, the federal reserve (!) that’s under Jewish control, and is subverting our lives and making them not-so-great (note: financial crisis). If you just look at the media, it’s hard to argue that a vast, vast majority of it is Jewish owned. That means, Hollywood, TV, newspapers, magazines, even the radio. And that’s terrible for society as a whole as they can tell one lie and repeat it over various medias.
          Slightly off topic, but not really… Look at the word antisemitism. We hear all the time it’s bad and means, “anti-jewish,” when it means, “anti Semitics” which are a darker-skinned, curly-haired breed, or family, of Jew. Do you know who’s Semitic? The Palestinians. Who’s most anti them? Israel. So what’s the most antisemitic country in the world? Exactly. And yet the Jewish run media are always on about racism and shit. Kinda ironic.

        4. I’m German, so let me tell you, you’re falling into the same trap the German people did in the 1930s.
          Look at it this way: bigshot CEOs, bankers, whatever, they play golf, right? And probably wear suits? So does that make people who play golf or wear suits evil?
          It’s the positions that corrupt. Give anybody that kind of power, it’s bound to corrupt them.

        5. Totally agree on the credit rating. I could care less what mine is anymore. I have my mortgage. Don’t intend on borrowing money again.

        6. I agree. And right now those positions are held mostly by the Jews. And the major problem here is greed. If you control the money, the power, then the women you’re going to get addicted to that lifestyle. But all that’s besides the point. The point right now is a lot of the people in charge are fuckwits who care about profit maximisation at the expense of all else. So they gotta go. If the next bunch are fuckwits, then maybe the system has to go. But right now I’m sure we’re all a little tired of getting fucked in the ass.

        7. I agree that something’s boiling, but hey, we’re still probably decades away from a French-revolution-like outcome.

        8. Do you also not get the not so subtle anti sSemitism every culture in history has had while host I g the Jews within their borders?

        9. Hm. Many Americans blather on about “hard work, Puritan work ethic” etc. and then it turns out a group of people are better at achieving favorable outcomes and they get hated for it.
          I don’t even know why I keep defending Jews, I’m not one of them. But if I had to get up and go somewhere else, I would strongly consider Israel. It’s probably the last line of defense between the Muslim scum and the rest of the world.

        10. no kidding, jews keep israel red-pill, and impose blue pill everywhere else–notice the overt racism in israel, but jews in the west preach anti-racism to whites—and you wonder why they are hated!!!???

        11. we hate them because they are successful–that old bullshit line.- no, we hate them because they are successful at destroying our culture and our race.
          as for last line of defense against muslim scum—it is the jews who have fermented the coming war with islam against the west, they are solely responsible for it. time to smarten up bitch, or fuck off to israel, you already think like a jew

        12. the only trap the germans fell into was falling for a jew named hitler who pretended to be a german nationalist, he and his rothschild backers murdered millions of white europeans including multi millions of germans

        13. so don’t fall behind and reap the benefits? the ones with cash-back, it’s like a free discount basically if you stay on top of your finances..
          I agree they fuck over the avg person, but if you’re not average, then you can use them to your advantage.

        14. The word is fomented. Fermented. Heh.
          And how the hell are they destroying our race and culture? Your idiotic screen name tells everyone what kind of person you are.

      2. Another trick. Pay your taxes early. Overpay them. The IRS will refund you the difference. There was one savvy guy who bought $1 coins from the mint using his credit card. He racked up over a million points and lifetime elite status. He would order the coins, deposit them at the bank then pay off the card with the money he just deposited. The mint stopped allowing coins to be purchased with cards. But if you think hard, there’s ways to manufacture spending if you don’t normally spend a lot.

      3. I don’t spend anywhere near $1,000 a month and visit a new country every year. The only stuff I could charge to a credit card would be gasoline purchases and groceries, plus “fun” optional expenses, and that stuff totals maybe $3,000 a year. The most I ever spent, in a year were I made tons of cash, was $8,000 which is only $666 a month. That being said, I suppose this is doable, but it would take me a year to earn it, and I’d have to remember to cancel before the annual fee.

    3. But you usually end up spending $3,000 on random shit anyways, right? The point is to use this card for those expenses and thus obtain the travel benefits that you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise.

      1. If you used the card for your grocery/gas/whatever expenses for 11 months, it shouldn’t be too hard to rack up 3,000$, benefit from the travel bonus and cancel the card before the annusl fee is due.

    4. Google “target prepaid redcard manufacture spend”. Easy way to spend $3,000 that comes straight back to you. Again, totally free

    5. I switched to Geico and it saved me 15%, but that was after I spent a lot more.

    6. I’ve done this multiple times and it’s as simple as having sufficient funds in your checking account, setting up autopayment, using the card for 3 months to exceed the minimum, then cancelling the card before the year is up. Total of 10 minutes of work plus a little extra buying (paying bills with your CC helps), and you get like $250-$440 free. Hard to mess up, if you are disciplined and have sufficient money.

    7. i suppose that you could buy $3000 of postal money orders, pay the 3% cash advance fee plus about $5 for the money orders, then deposit the money orders in your bank account and EFT the $3,000 to the credit card company to avoid interest charges. So you got $400 worth of travel for about $95.

      1. 1. Have a pile of money
        2. Don’t spend it
        3. Ya broke fag
        You might want to check over the steps of that syllogism again. I think it comes out to ya frugal bastard, which might have something to do with where the pile of money came from.

        1. Most of the travel hackers are using manufactured spending to accrue points via a bluebird account. It doesn’t cost much of anything other than the time it takes to make a trip to wallmart to shift money around.
          Alternatively you can use bluebird to allow you to make mortgage payments via credit card and get points. As long as you are not spending money on stuff you wouldn’t be doing anyways it works out in your favor.
          These blog posts give some info on how you used to do it. It allowed the author to flyw around the world first class on various international airlines for a total cost of ~200 or so.

  3. usually this works. sometimes yeah you have to spend a certain amount in the first few months. if you don’t normally spend that, then this isn’t for you. its not really a hack, in fact, they advertise this. But you can only do this a few number of times before you run out of credit cards to sign up to.

    1. Many times you can get cards again after 12 to 18 months. I’ve been doing this for 4 years now to the tune of ~20 credit cards a year and have yet to run out. I’m basically making a second lap now on the cards I applied for in 2013

  4. The first thing you forgot to mention though is you need good credit. Ideally above 700. Rewards cards that offer generous bonuses are only given to people with good credit scores. So some people will have to work on building their credit first before they can do this.
    You also have to meet the minimum spending requirement which can be anywhere from nothing(for the US Airways mastercard) to $10,000 for some airline business cards. But most hover in the $1000-$3,000 range. But it’s easy. Many apartments now allow you to pay your rent with a credit card. As long as you pay your balance off in full you’re good. Put 3 months rent on that card, pay it off each month and you’ve met your minimum. Same for health insurance, cable, phone, groceries. You can easily make the minimum spend buying things you normally have to purchase anyway. Paying stuff with cash instead of a rewards card is basically throwing money away.
    I’ve received around 300,000 points in the last year from card bonuses. Enough for 12 free domestic round-trip flights. Or 6 international flights. And it basically costs me nothing. My most recent was two Delta Amex cards, one person, one business. Only $1000 spending required on each to get 50,000 points. So that was 100,000 points right there. 4 free domestic round trips.

    1. Bingo. Pay your mortgage with a money order purchased at the grocery store on credit. Pay your tuition inline with credit.

  5. Credit is much more complicated than is generally reported. Multiple inquiries generally immediately drop scores a great deal, as much as 30 points for the first one but that effect goes away over a shorter period of time. Multiple short lived accounts bring down your average age and likely put you in a scoring category with unstable borrowers. So that can drop your scores and limit how high your score can actually get. That said if you get large limits and don’t charge up a high percentage, thats a very positive factor.
    If you have no credit, get a couple of cd secured loans or have someone add you as an authorized user to an old established account(and try to verify online if the banks, credit cards report to all credit burueas,as not all do). I was able to get someone who had no credit up to a 750 using these tricks.

    1. Unless you are planning on taking out a major loan in the short-term, the credit score fluctuations from opening cards is pretty much background noise.

      1. They arent fluctuations having lower average age accounts gives you a lower scores period. You might be able to mitigate this by having several very old accounts you never get rid of.

    1. There is a long and complicated answer to this question but the short answer is “no”. Closed accounts stay on your account and continue to age for 10 years. Just keep your utilization low and you’re good.

  6. The flight is often the least expensive part of travel these days. I think I could probably make more than the cost of the flight in the time I would waste going through manufactured spending gyrations, opening and closing credit cards, etc.

    1. You just open the account and then program pyments and cancelation into your calendar. Juggle multiple cards this way. Track your expenses on various accounts using, something you should be doing anyways.

  7. “but let’s be honest, you couldn’t care less.” – Yeah, actually, I do care. Because in the long run, your credit score will affect your day-to-day life in a MUCH bigger way than getting cheap flights.

      1. Credit is a very useful tool, if used correctly. Most individuals do not have the start up capital to build a business from the ground up, and wasting years of your life just to start debt free is not always the best option (“opportunity cost”—look it up). If you’re using your credit to make an INVESTMENT, it’s not at all foolish.

    1. Totally agree. Credit and credit scores are another area of my expertise. I wasn’t saying you could care less about your credit score, I was saying that you could care less why it works like that. The outcome is the same regardless of how the sausage is made.

  8. I did something like this in my early 20s and my credit score shot thru the roof. Which meant bigger cards with higher balances. But none of it mattered because I did not use credit. I put all my expenses on credit but then just paid in full monthly.
    Then I lost my job and racked up a few thousand in credit. Beware!

  9. If the credit cards only offer flier miles….how do you use this strategy to save on rental cars, hotels, etc?
    I don’t get that part…

  10. Somebody once said that his mother saved so much money from hacks like this one that she had the fill for bankruptcy…

  11. Credit Card churning like this is a great way to get extra money, but you aren’t really getting flights for $50. When you get hundreds of dollars from the sign-up bonus, and you have to spend that on the flight. But you also have the option to just take cash back most times, so spending points that are worth $300 or $400 cash is not the same as getting a free or $50 flight, because of the opportunity cost.
    But it is true that you can get hundreds in value (either cash or travel) from credit card rewards.

  12. I’ve been using the Barclays Arrival card for going on 2 years; it’s the real deal and well worth the $89 annual fee. It’s my everyday card.
    I’ve saved thou$ands redeeming miles towards travel and Barclay’s customer service is top notch; I’d rate them just a notch below American Express, which sets the standard IMHO.

  13. Can we just talk about the fact that america’s economy is so fucked, that it actually makes sense for major corporations to lend money out to people from personal expenses on the scale we’re talking about here? No investment in industry, just loaning money out to americans to pay for god know what.

  14. I own a credit repair company and I can say this tactic will destroy your credit… Not only it leaves an inquiry on your credit, it’ll fluctuate your utilization ratio and the length of your credit history…bad move… that’s already 40% of what the FICO model measures…

  15. As for cancelling the card before the annual fee is due, remember that most card companies with introductory mileage offers require a minimum term. If you cancel the card before the minimum time limit, you lose the miles.

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