Most Americans will use their credit card rewards during the holidays and would change their plans if reward programs were curtailed.
A survey commissioned by the Electronic Payments Coalition and conducted by Morning Consult found more than 4 in 5 Americans with credit cards have rewards programs, including 75% of households with incomes less than $50,000.
The poll found over 74% of households with incomes less than $50,000 plan to use rewards in some fashion during the holidays and if reward programs were reduced, over 33% of those households would cut back on travel, holiday gift giving and hosting family and friends.
Across incomes, the elimination of rewards would impact holiday spending. 29% of adults with credit card rewards say they would travel less this holiday season, while 26% would purchase fewer or less expensive gifts and 24% would host friends and family less often if they did not have credit card rewards.
The numbers rise to 34%, 30% and 27%, respectively, among households with less than $50,000 annual income.
Richard Hunt, EPC chairman, said: “Changing the way our credit card system operates would seriously jeopardize the reward programs families rely on to help make ends meet and offset record inflation.
“Vacations might get all the attention when politicians talk about cashing in rewards, but the truth is credit card rewards are used by millions of Americans for the less glamourous but more important trips to be with our loved ones.”
The survey also found that cashback is the most common reward, with 66% of cardholders having a card that offers cashback and half of those planning to use their cashback to purchase gifts this year.
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