tower, architecture, landmark-103417.jpg

How to Fund a Trip to France:

5 Ways to Maximize Credit Card Reward Points

Returning to France has been on my radar since after my first unforgettable trip last year. But this time around, I was determined to explore every avenue to maximize credit card points and rewards for an even better experience.

Finding The Way

When it comes to traveling with my family of four without breaking the bank, accumulating points and miles through credit card sign-ups has been THE WAY. I’ll admit, I was a skeptic at first. But then I stumbled upon Amon and Christina from OurRichJourney on YouTube. Their video How We Saved $10,000 on a Vacation to Europe by Travel Hacking (#TravelHacking) opened my eyes to the possibilities of traveling smart.

What is Travel Hacking?

 In case you’re not familiar, travel hacking involves strategically earning points and miles to score discounted or free travel. It’s all about making the most of credit card rewards, airline miles, and hotel programs to fuel your wanderlust.

Credit Card Misconceptions

Before diving into travel hacking, I, like many, harbored misconceptions about the impact on my credit score. After thorough research, I took the leap and applied for the Chase Sapphire card. And guess what? My credit score not only survived but thrived! Now I’m proudly juggling ten cards and inching closer to that coveted 850 credit score.

See the article on  4 Common Credit Card Misconceptions.

american express, cards, credit-89024.jpg

For those eager to follow in my footsteps and embark on their own points-rich journey, here are five recommendations to maximize your rewards:

  1. Choose the Right Travel Rewards Credit Card: Look for credit cards that offer generous sign-up bonuses, flexible redemption options, and bonus categories tailored to your spending habits. Cards like Chase SapphireAmerican Express Platinum , or  Capital One Venture  have been invaluable assets in my wallet, providing lucrative rewards and versatile transfer options.
  2. Meet Minimum Spending Requirements: Many credit cards require you to meet certain spending thresholds within the first few months to earn the sign-up bonus. To achieve this without overspending, consider using your credit card for everyday expenses like groceries, bills, and dining out. Just remember to pay off your balance in full each month to avoid accruing interest charges.
  3. Maximize Bonus Categories: Take full advantage of bonus categories offered by your credit card to earn additional points or miles. Whether it’s dining, travel, or specific partner purchases, capitalize on these opportunities to bolster your rewards balance. For instance, I am using my card for hotel reservations, restaurants, transportation (Uber/Lift) in France to rack up extra points.
  4. Redeem Points Wisely: Research the most lucrative ways to redeem your points or miles for maximum value. Transferring points to  airline  or hotel loyalty programs  often yields better redemption rates than using them directly through the credit card’s portal. Explore transfer partners with strong alliances or partnerships in France, such as Air France/KLM , Marriott Bonvoy, or Hilton Honors.
  5. Take Advantage of Travel Benefits: Beyond points and miles, many travel rewards credit cards offer additional perks like travel insurance, airport lounge access, or statement credits for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry. Familiarize yourself with these benefits and leverage them during your travels to enhance your travel experience and save money on various expenses.

How I’m funding my Flights and Accommodations to France:


For flights, I got crafty and transferred my Chase rewards points to Air France. With a nifty 25% bonus, I scored round-trip tickets for a fraction of what I paid last time. If you consider Air France-KLM they have dynamic pricing on its award redemptions where you can track an award chart that shows what the lowest award prices can be between 2 cities. In addition, the program also has a benefit called Flying Blue Promo Rewards. Each month, Flying Blue allows you to book select routes at a discounted award rate, sometimes up to 50% off normal award pricing. The discounted pricing is only available temporarily but provides some of the best rates available from any program.

Flying Blue miles can be used to book nonstop flights from several cities in the United States. Air France operates nonstop flights to the following U.S. cities from Paris:

  • Atlanta (ATL)
  • Boston (BOS)
  • Chicago (ORD)
  • Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW)
  • Denver (DEN)
  • Detroit (DTW)
  • Houston (IAH)
  • Los Angeles (LAX)
  • Miami (MIA)
  • Minneapolis (MSP)
  • New York (JFK)
  • Newark (EWR)
  • Raleigh-Durham (RDU)
  • San Francisco (SFO)
  • Seattle (SEA)
  • Washington, D.C. (IAD)


As for accommodations, boutique stays are our vibe this trip. And thanks to a sweet new checking and savings  promotion with Chase, a chunk of our lodging expenses are practically covered.

Here are six popular boutique hotels in Paris where you can book stays using points:

  • Hyatt Paris-Vendome: With its prime location near Place Vendôme and the Opéra Garnier, the Hyatt Paris-Vendome offers luxury and convenience in the heart of Paris. Redeem 35,000 to 40,000 World of Hyatt points per night to enjoy the elegance and sophistication of this renowned hotel.
  • Hotel du Louvre: Situated in a historic building facing the Louvre Museum and the Tuileries Garden, Hotel du Louvre offers a blend of classic charm and modern comfort. You can book your stay here using 25,000 to 35,000 World of Hyatt points per night, making it a great option for experiencing Parisian culture and heritage.
  • Grand Hotel du Palais Royal: Nestled between the Louvre and the Palais Royal gardens, the Grand Hotel du Palais Royal offers refined luxury and breathtaking views of Paris landmarks. Utilize 30,000 World of Hyatt points per night to indulge in the lavish amenities and impeccable service of this exquisite boutique hotel.

These Hyatt properties provide experiences in some of Paris’s most desirable locations, allowing you to use your World of Hyatt points to enhance your stay and make the most of your trip.

Here are three additional popular boutique hotels in Paris where you can book stays using points:

These boutique hotels not only provide a comfortable and memorable stay but also offer the opportunity to utilize your credit card rewards to offset lodging expenses, allowing you to indulge in the charm and elegance of Paris without breaking the bank.

See detailed recommendations on travel hotels booked with points in Paris and guide to Paris with points.

Bottom line:

Travel hacking your way to a dream destinations like France (or wherever your wanderlust leads) using credit card rewards isn’t just a savvy financial move; it’s a passport to unforgettable experiences. So why wait? Start planning your next adventure today!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may earn a commission if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase. However, rest assured that I only recommend products and services that I genuinely believe in and have personally used. Your support helps keep this blog running and allows me to continue providing valuable content. Thank you for your support!

Scroll to Top