According to a recent survey, four out of ten UK residents who collect air miles never cash them in, leaving an estimated 14 trillion air miles currently unused.
The survey of 1,005 UK residents, conducted for incremental revenue specialist Collinson Latitude, showed that of the 23% of the British population who collect air miles, six out of 10 of them claim that it takes too long to collect anything of value.
62% of air mile scheme members said that being able to spend their points to purchase goods such as travel accessories or electrical items would be more of an incentive. So too, would being able to top up rewards with cash to buy goods or services.
Product director James Berry said: “This study doesn’t paint a particularly pretty picture of many airline loyalty programmes. While there is clearly desire among consumers to collect these points, the way in which the loyalty programmes are being managed is throwing up barriers.
“Rewards seem to be beyond reach or are simply not attractive enough. Consumers are also being frustrated when they attempt to redeem their rewards by a lack of availability of flights.
“On a positive note, consumers are throwing the airlines a lifeline by highlighting ways in which these programmes can be improved. What’s important is for airlines to listen to the messages coming from their customers and take action.”
The study was conducted for Collinson Latitude by independent research company, Aurora, last year.