Convenience is king when it comes to what's in Canadians' wallets, finds
American Express study
MARKHAM, ON, Oct. 10, 2013 /CNW/ - Canadian credit card holders claim
keen loyalty to credit card rewards programs and agree it's one of the
most valuable features of their card, yet many are unsure how their
card program works, or even how or why they applied for their card in
the first place.
According to a recent survey from American Express Canada, 89 per cent
of Canadians carry at least one credit card in their wallet and just
over half (52%) of credit card holders carry between two and three on a
regular basis. Over half (59%) have used their primary credit card for
over seven years—a significant amount of time considering the limited
thought consumers put into the card selection itself. The reason? The
majority of those surveyed (60%) admit to initially applying for a
credit card through their bank while only 15 per cent say they
researched their options.
While it appears consumers aren't putting much research into selecting
what card best suits their needs, many (68%) state credit card rewards
programs are important to them. Unfortunately, just over a quarter
(27%) admit to not even understanding what their rewards program offers
them and a further 11 per cent feel confused or overwhelmed by all of
the choices, different programs, and affiliated cards available today.
"It's incredibly important for Canadians to do a little research upfront
to ensure they choose the credit card that actually fits their spending
habits and lifestyle rather than a default card provided to the
masses," says Brian Kelly, rewards expert and founder of
ThePointsGuy.com. "There are other factors to also keep in mind when
selecting a card such as flexibility on how points can be earned,
redeemed, and transferred — all valuable considerations when it comes
to making your spending work for you."
Despite Canadians' passivity towards the type of rewards programs they
belong to, they do know what they value in a card. Over half of
consumers (57%) rank discounted or redeeming for travel as a preferred
perk in a rewards program along with redeeming for products (66%) and
cash back (79%). In addition to rewards, about three-quarters of
Canadians (74%) cite world-wide customer service and travel insurance
coverage (61%) as other important factors in a card.
"There are currently a lot of changes in the industry that are prompting
more people to evaluate the cards they are using, perhaps for the first
time in years," says Brett Mooney, Vice President of Consumer
Acquisition and Experience at American Express Canada. "At American
Express we are investing heavily in our award-winning Gold Rewards Card
to remind Canadians that there are alternative choices in the market
that can better suit their needs. Our Gold Rewards Card provides
choice, freedom and value by allowing Cardmembers to transfer to
frequent flyer programs or redeem their points for travel anywhere in
the world without any restrictions or black-outs."
American Express offers the Gold Rewards Card at no annual fee for the
first year of Cardmembership, a $150 value, and to further entice
consumers, a welcome bonus of 25,000 Points when Cardmembers spend $500
in the first three months - which is enough for a round trip economy
flight to almost anywhere in North America.
To learn more, visit www.amex.ca.
Additional key survey findings include:
64% of rewards card holders say their rewards program saves them money
53% of rewards card holders say they are keen rewards points collectors
55% of rewards card holders say they are very loyal to their rewards
44% of rewards card holders say they choose to shop at particular stores
based on where they can earn rewards points
About American Express Canada
American Express in Canada operates as Amex Bank of Canada and Amex
Canada Inc. Both are wholly owned subsidiaries of the New York based
American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., the largest
operating unit of the American Express Company. Amex Bank of Canada is
the issuer of American Express charge and credit cards, with outstanding products like the American Express® Gold Rewards Card, the American Express® Platinum Card, and the American Express® AeroplanPlus® Gold Card. Amex Canada Inc. operates the Corporate Travel and
Travellers Cheques divisions in Canada. American Express opened its
first offices in Toronto and Hamilton in 1853 and now employs 3,700
Canadians coast-to-coast. For more information, visit AmericanExpress.ca or connect with us at Facebook.com/AmericanExpressCanada and YouTube.com/AmericanExpressCAD.
From October 2nd to October 3rd 2013 an online survey was conducted
among 1,343 randomly selected Canadian adults who are Angus Reid Forum
panelists and who have at least one Credit Card. The margin of
error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 2.7%, 19 times out of
20. The results have been statistically weighted according to
education, age, gender and region (and in Quebec language) Census data
to ensure a sample representative of the entire adult population of
Canada. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.
SOURCE: American Express
For further information:
Becky Brescacin, (416) 644-1398