Kiwis are swiping blind according to survey
27-Oct-2017 11:01 AM
Up to $6.3 billion was spent on credit cards in the last year by Kiwis with no idea of the rewards their card may or may not offer.
Despite leading the world with the rate of annual electronic transactions per capita, Kiwis are swiping their cards but leaving a startling amount of rewards on the table.
Rob Bourne, Head of Card Services at American Express New Zealand, says greater awareness of how different credit cards in the market stack up and how to use those cards to best effect could earn Kiwis a “truly staggering” amount of rewards.
The research commissioned by American Express found almost 44 per cent of Kiwi credit card holders have had a one-off expenditure of $5,000 or more in the past year, but only 53 percent of these put the purchase on their credit card.
Run the numbers using the American Express Airpoints Platinum Card as a baseline, and this means that on these one-off purchases alone Kiwis have collectively missed out on the potential to earn over 26 million Airpoints Dollars™: put another way, that’s enough Airpoints Dollars™ to fly everyone in Thames to Fiji and back. Five times. 
Almost one third of credit card holders spent just 10 per cent of their everyday income on their credit card, with a further 14 per cent spending none, revealing the majority of Kiwis are using payment methods that give no return.
“Most people have a credit card for greater freedom and flexibility and if it’s a rewards card, it’s to make their money work for them.
“Kiwis love travel and we were among the earliest widespread adopters of electronic cards, but there’s a disconnect in our approach to spending and maximising the return — Kiwis are simply missing out,” says Bourne.
“It doesn’t have to just be the big-ticket items either, utilising credit cards on everyday spending like groceries, petrol and utilities can quickly add up,” Bourne explains.
The research also found that about half (48 per cent) of credit card holders simply accepted the credit card offer from their bank without investigating any alternatives. Additionally, 17% reported that they don’t understand how their points translate into rewards.
Bourne added: “Nowadays we shop around for everything, so it doesn’t make sense not to shop around for a credit card with the fees, services and rewards that suit you. The right card combined with the right spending can take you anywhere!”
Notes to Editors:
*Data based on an August 2017 Perceptive Research survey with a sample size greater than 1,000, internal data from American Express International NZ Inc and MWE Consulting New Zealand Card Reports August 2017.
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About American Express
American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, foursquare.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/company/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress.
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 Calculation based on conservative estimate of 1.5m individual credit card holders in New Zealand