Millennials most likely to earn, lose and donate rewards

Boomers are much less likely to let points expire or give rewards away

Sabrina Karl
Personal Finance Writer
Data whiz and visual storyteller


When it comes to credit card rewards, a new TD Bank survey finds that millennials lead older generations in a trio of behaviors: the good, the bad and the generous. 

In the plus column, 7 in 8 millennials (87 percent) reported owning at least one rewards card, versus 85 percent for baby boomers (age 55 and older) and 80 percent among Generation X (age 35-54). 

But millennials (age 18-34) are far more prone to losing their rewards, with 30 percent saying they have had rewards expire before they could use them. That’s more than three times the loss of baby boomers, of whom only 8 percent reported they’d let rewards expire. Gen X respondents fell between the two age groups at 19 percent.

Losing rewards isn’t the only way young cardholders are forgoing the use of their earned benefits, though. Millennials are also more likely to donate their rewards to charity, family and friends, with 57 percent saying they’re willing to give rewards away. 

That’s in stark comparison to just over a quarter of baby boomers who are open to donating their rewards. 

TD Bank’s Consumer Spending Index, now in its second year, drew on a sample of 1,002 adults representative of the national population. Fielded in late March, the survey’s findings were released Oct. 23, 2017.

Millennials most likely to earn, lose and donate credit card rewards

See related: Millennials reap latest perks in credit card rewards wars, New Uber rewards card is the latest to target millennials, Millennials strongly prefer cards, What millennials can teach us about credit

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Updated: 03-23-2019