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Confused by your hotel or credit card rewards points? Even more confused by your airline frequent flyer points?
You’re not alone.
A study released earlier this week by NextAdvisors found that 54 percent of the 2,317 Americans it surveyed were confused by their frequent flyer rewards programs, while 47 percent found their hotel loyalty programs difficult to understand, and 44 percent were puzzled by their credit card points.
They were so confused, in fact, that one-third of the both the frequent flyer and hotel reward holders didn’t even know how to redeem their points, and almost a quarter of credit card didn’t know. Almost half didn’t even know how many hotel points they actually had at the time, and more than a third didn’t know how many frequent flyer miles or credit card points they had.
Also, 40 percent said they have let frequent flyer miles expire, with 42 percent allowing hotel points to expire and 25 percent letting credit card points go.
"By not redeeming miles, rewards, or loyalty points, consumers are literally leaving money on the table," NextAdvisor analyst Julie Myhre-Nunes said. "That's why it's important for you to take the time to find the programs and credit cards that best suit your needs."
Not all of that confusion falls on the airlines or hotels, NextAdvisor wrote in its survey findings. Consumers are definitely out of the loop, it said. However, since the issuers are in control of their rewards and redemption opportunities, it falls on them to educate their members.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the survey also found that Millennials—the group that lives online and is techy by nature—are less likely to express confusion about their frequent flyer miles. Perhaps most surprisingly, though, it found that Millennials are more likely to express confusion about their credit card rewards than non-Millennials. That’s confusing.
For those who are confused, NextAdvisors offered resources on how to determine point levels, and directed readers to its analysis of credit card travel rewards.
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