Life is stressful! Deadlines to meet, chores to get over with, there's already only so many hours to a day.
The last thing you need is spending countless hours tracking your miles and travel.
Luckily, there are many resources for the travel hackers or discount extraordinaire out there that could streamline the management of all your credit cards and loyalty programs. I personally use many of these tools to help manage my own portfolio.
Not only does it help you save time, these tools can also help you secure and monitor your credit, track suspicious account activity, or find deals for light and travel!
Make Your Points Look Like This!
Here are some of my favorite tools I personally use, all of which are free (some with premium options if you need a beefier version):
KEEPING TRACK OF MY MILES AND POINTS:
AwardWallet is a free online tracking tool for all your airline miles and other loyalty points. Simply plug in your membership info into AwardWallet and with 1 click you can have the site retrieve your account balances from all the accounts you have saved to the site.
I have 20 accounts that Award Wallet is tracking and it has saved me hours of bookkeeping, as I can see all important info on all my programs all on one page, such as what status, point balance, and point expiration dates I have for everything across my entire portfolio. Plus you can shortcut logging into individual programs through their summary page so that you will no longer have to memorize all the passwords to every individual loyalty program you have to sign in.
KEEPING TRACK OF MY CREDIT SCORE:
Credit Karma is one of my favorite free credit report scoring site available today.
Keep in mind Credit Karma uses VantageScore 3.0 for their report calculation, and thus may differ from your actual FICO score that many credit card company uses when they pull scores for applications. Credit Karma does seem to be generally accurate or at least in range of your actual FICO score to the best of my experience.
Some of the other info offered on a Credit Karma report is also extremely helpful in helping you plan your credit card signups. You would be able to see the number of credit hard inquiries you had over the past 2 years, as well as see when inquiries were pulled to help you maneuver around Chase's 5/24 or AmEx 2/90 rules, handy if you are looking to roll in some of those lucrative signup bonuses.
SEARCHING FOR AWARD SEATS:
Award.Flights is a nifty tool that helps you search for inventory of award seats on all major airline alliances.
You will need to have an airline loyalty program membership to use this tool (which may require some legwork in signing up for an account with each respective programs, but why not, it is all free), and Award.Flights will help you search a specific timeframe for readily available award seats to help you streamline the research process before you call in to reserve your awards.
My favorite feature is that you can have the app search for availability over a range of days. Super handy so you don't have to deal with the archaic websites of most airlines and their reservation systems.
BONUS: ORGANIZING THOSE CREDIT CARDS:
CREDIT CARD HOLDER BOOK
As much as I would love to be able to do everything digitally, you still have to deal with the physical credit cards.
Personally, I keep only 1 or 2 of the cards I regularly use in my wallet while stashing the rest of my cards in one of these. Now I can be sure everything is kept at the same spot. Being rather clumsy, this is probably the best $9 I have spent.
There are many other tools out there for the travel hackers today to find deals and help organize your travel. What are some of your favorite programs and tricks to get the job done? Comment below!