1) Poor Credit History
If you have poor credit history, that will impact your ability to engage in these Honeymoon Hacks. Many of the cards outlined in the itineraries are of a premium nature, requiring high earnings and high credit scores. If you are still building your credit profile, start with lower tier cards, like the outstanding Chase Freedom and Chase Freedom Unlimited to build your credit history.
There are multiple reasons not to hack your honeymoon, but poor credit situation is probably the best reason why to avoid it. Make your payments on time and reduce your credit utilization and that will improve your credit scores. While these honeymoon hacks are designed for couples looking to have a fantastic vacation after their wedding, the site could be utilized for any couple.
Even years after marriage, the same travel rewards principles would apply. Please come visit later if you are not in the position to pursue a honeymoon hack at this stage of your life.
Occasionally, just one member of a couple will have poor credit. The strategies can still work with one individual, but the impact on your credit score will be more dramatic in the short term. We have a number of itineraries requiring 2 or 3 credit cards, those may be of more interest in these cases.
2) Not Enough Time To Execute
Sometimes you’ve found Honeymoon Hacker too late and you don’t have enough time before your wedding to execute an entire honeymoon hack. Maybe you’ve already paid for the venue and pre-paid the caterer and put down a deposit on the flowers and photographer. Remember that you can always gain part of the benefit, even if you can’t do the entire plan. In order to receive a welcome bonus for signing up for a new credit card, you need to meet the minimum spend criteria typically in the first 3 months and wait for your bonus points to be credited, which can take an additional few weeks.
If you do not have enough time, there are still some things you can do. A few cards offer the welcome bonus after the first purchase like the Barclaycard American Airlines Aviator Red Card. One of our other favorite cards perfect for this situation is the Capital One Venture card, which allows you to “erase” the spending after the purchases have been made for travel. Essentially you are able to redeem the bonus after your actual honeymoon with expenses from your honeymoon.
You can always go for partial credit and choose the cards giving the highest bang for the buck with spending you have remaining. Cards with flexible point redemptions, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Citi Thank You cards allow you to redeem the miles earned through purchases in their website travel portals or through transferring to partners. Those cards offer the most flexibility and likelihood that you will be able to maximize your point value and minimize your honeymoon spend.
The dates of your honeymoon are also in your control, you can change the dates to whatever you please. You could take your honeymoon the day after your wedding or wait three months later. A higher portion of weddings are during the summer and fall, with fewer in the spring and winter. Perhaps optimizing your honeymoon to take advantage of hotter, sunnier weather in winter months may be a better experience. You get to plan your honeymoon, you can move the dates to whatever you would like them to be.
3) Expenses Aren’t High Enough To Meet Minimum Spends for Welcome Bonus
Some of the premium credit cards with large welcome bonuses featured on the site come with large minimum spend requirements. You need to be able to meet the minimum spend requirements in order to meet the bonus. We at Honeymoon Hacker do not recommend taking out credit cards with minimum spend requirements beyond your normal wedding spending and life spending.
Carrying credit card balances to reach minimum spend requirements is not smart. We strongly advocate planning in advance and mapping out the spending outlays that can be paid with credit cards for your wedding and life when designing your honeymoon hack.
Often one or both sets of parents will contribute money to pay for the wedding. Will that money be paid directly to vendors or provided as a gift to you to spend for your wedding?
A number of the recommendations above hold for not having enough spending to meet minimum spending requirement. Choose cards with instant bonuses, after the fact redemptions, and flexibility in redemptions to maximize value. If you are having trouble triaging your situation, feel free to email me at email@example.com and I’ll share my two cents.
4) I’m Over Chase’s 5/24 Rule
If you have already have exceeded Chase’s 5/24 rule, it places some limitations on the cards that you will be able to open to achieve your Honeymoon Hack. Chase is the sole credit card partner for Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, Hyatt Hotels, IHG Hotels. Chase also has very valuable cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Reserve, Chase Freedom, and the Chase Freedom Unlimited that are a part of many of the Honeymoon Hacker itineraries.
There is an entire world outside of Chase, we’ve even designed some specific over 5/24 Honeymoon Hacks that include no Chase cards.
Remember also that you are getting married and forming a couple. Is your future spouse also over 5/24? If not, you may be able to focus on non-Chase cards, while your future spouse opens the Chase cards necessary for the Honeymoon Hack.
Chase also has put limitations on how frequently a customer is able to earn a bonus on its Sapphire cards. Customers are only able to receive a Sapphire bonus (from the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve) once every 48 months. While you may be under Chase’s 5/24 rule, you may not be eligible for one of the cards outlined in the itinerary you have chose. Plan accordingly. Transfers are restricted to members of the same household.
5) Honeymoon Hack’s Don’t Cover Other Expenses Like Food, Activities, and Drinks
The hope for these guides is to help offset most of the largest travel costs, airfare and hotel for your honeymoon. Some activities can be purchased in a manner that codes as travel and can be offset with some credit card bonuses, but that is the exception. We have provided a few itineraries that are exclusively at All-Inclusive resorts – that should defray the costs to a large extent if you are really focused at minimizing all honeymoon costs.
The idea isn’t to make your honeymoon absolutely free, but we hope to save you thousands of dollars by providing clear plans for you to take a tremendous vacation at the fraction of its actual cost.
6) You are Credit Card Averse
If you are absolutely credit card averse and believe that you should not open any credit cards, then this site is not the site for you. At Honeymoon Hacker we always advocate using credit cards responsibly and only utilizing credit cards for spending that was going to occur anyway. We believe you should never carry a balance or utilize credit cards beyond your ability to afford what you are purchasing.
We use credit cards for the high signup bonuses to travel cheaply. If you are absolutely against using credit cards of any type, then we respect your decision.
7) You are Planning on Buying a House and Don’t Want to Open New Credit Accounts
If you are exploring a large purchase like buying a home with a mortgage or taking out a car loan to purchase a car, please be aware that opening credit cards has a short term negative impact on your credit score. While the best rates for mortgages or cars are available with credit scores between 720 and 760 in most cases, opening up too much credit too quickly could have an adverse impact on your score and cost you additional money for the term of your payment if you fall into lower credit categories.
If your purchase of a home is imminent, you should not explore honeymoon hacks until your new home purchase is closed. We never advocate for borrowing money for cars, but if you must, be aware that lower credit scores can translate into higher interest rates and higher payments.
Analyze your credit situation, if your score is sufficiently high, in the high 700s to low 800s, you can probably “afford” the hit to your credit score in the short term while still qualifying for the lowest possible rates.