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Most Credit Cardholders Dissatisfied With Rewards Programs

Capital One released results a few weeks ago from its very first "Rewards Barometer", a new survey to be conducted each quarter that seeks to evaluate consumers' opinions about their credit card rewards programs. What Capital One found was that the vast majority of people who use rewards credit cards, 78 percent to be exact, aren't completely satisfied with their rewards programs.

Big surprise, eh? 

My guess is that the 22 percent who said they were completely satisfied probably have no clue how their rewards programs work or what other options are out there. If they did, they would have agreed with the other 78 percent. I talk to people about their credit cards all the time, and it constantly amazes me how little people actually know about the cards they use on a daily basis. Many don't even know if they receive rewards or not! They just use the card because they signed up for a checking account at their local bank and qualified for a credit card at the same time. Unfortunately, what I've found is that a lot of individuals treat credit cards kind of like their home or auto insurance.

Once they've got something in place that works, they tend to just forget about it, even if there are better options. I think the truth is that closer to 100 percent of credit card users wouldn't be "completely" happy with their rewards programs if they truly understood how the programs work. In fact, I haven't spoken with someone for several years that has raved about how awesome their credit card rewards program is. They just aren't like they used to be. But it's still free money, right?

According to Capital One's survey, that's the number one reason why we still use rewards credit cards to earn points—because it's free money. We simply take what we can get, because everyone likes free stuff. What about you? Are you completely satisfied with your credit card rewards program? If so, tell us all about it. We'd love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Joshua Heckathorn's picture

Joshua Heckathorn was President of Creditnet, is a credit expert and has been featured on CNNMoney, FOX Business, Yahoo Finance, The Street, and many other national publications during the past ten years.  He received a Bachelor of Science in Management (Finance) from Brigham Young University's Marriott School of Business and earned his MBA from Seattle University.

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