According to recent surveys, Capital One Financial Corporation found that consumers are relying more on rewards programs when planning their summer vacations. This summer promises to show a 5 to 7% increase in credit card rewards over last summer. Consumer trend analysts believe that this increase is due to the current decline in the economy. Statistics from consumer surveys indicate that 55% of credit card reward users chose cards with hotel benefits. Air travel and gas rewards also proved to be a very popular option amongst credit card users.
Card Rewards Supplemental
Over the past few years, consumers were turning to “staycations,” vacations that are in the same town or closer to home than normal. In order to cut back on spending without sacrificing vacations, consumers were sacrificing the “where” for the cost. Indications from the Capital One Financial Corporation study indicate that these sentiments are ending.
For one, consumers are leveraging the rewards points they have accumulated through one or more of their credit card reward cards, airline miles cards and other rewards programs. Consumers are taking more of a strategic approach – pulling points from here for the hotel room and there for the airline tickets.
Vacation Supplement Elements
Respondents to the survey admit that they are mostly redeeming their points to cover their hotel stays, at 55%. Redeeming points for airline tickets took second place at 48% and covering the “pain at the pump,” redeeming points to cover gas costs came in at 42%.
Cost vs. Fun
The rising costs of gas, food and travel may seem to be daunting. The situation, however, is not keeping the savvy American traveler down. Americans are gathering up all of those reward points from various cards and programs and learning how to cobble together a practically free or much less expensive summer vacation than they would have otherwise.