Do you know where your airline miles are?

NEED TO KNOW
  • Survey: 73% don't know how many they have
  • Most people don't know how the programs work
  • Younger people are less likely to keep track
Rewards

Ever have trouble remembering your wedding anniversary or a friend's birthday? Then it's a safe bet you might not know how many frequent-flyer miles or credit card rewards points you have. And you wouldn't be alone.

According to a new survey from The Points Guy, 73% of Americans who have miles or points don't know how many they have. Younger people are least likely to keep track; 80% of 18 to 29 year-olds are unaware of the balance in their airline miles or rewards points account.

“Failing to keep track of your rewards miles and points is like throwing money away,” said Brian Kelly, founder of ThePointsGuy.com.

The survey revealed some other troubling numbers. Nearly 60% say they don't understand how frequent flyer programs work and 27% admit they've let frequent-flyer miles expire. Kelly notes you can keep miles from expiring by making a purchase from an airline's online shopping site, and there are numerous websites and apps you can use to manage your miles and points.

On the flip side, airlines and hotels are making it more difficult to redeem rewards points. HLN Money Expert Clark Howard recommends you look for the best deal when booking a flight or hotel, instead of the deal that will get you the most rewards. To find the best rewards credit card for the way you spend, try CreditCardTuneup.com or Nerdwallet.com.

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