Why are there so many virtual gift cards?
The latest data suggests that the vast majority of consumers have never used a virtual gift card.
That’s because most of them aren’t aware that they can get gift cards for free from the gift card issuer.
According to a recent report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, nearly 30 percent of all Americans have used a gift card to buy a virtual item.
That includes nearly 60 percent of women, 35 percent of men, and 26 percent of millennials.
“A lot of these consumers have no idea that they have the ability to use these virtual gift credit cards to buy virtual goods and services,” said Matthew Mancuso, senior vice president of consumer insights at Experian.
The gift card system is especially popular among older consumers who may not have been paying attention to their spending habits in recent years.
For example, a recent study by Credit Karma found that 70 percent of the 1,000 respondents over age 65 who had used their credit cards in the last 12 months didn’t even realize they could get free gift cards from the card issuer in return.
Some people may have gotten the impression that a virtual card could be a good investment if they can find a good value for it, but most people are more likely to get value from a free gift card than a virtual one, according to Experian’s Manciso.
In fact, Mancaso says that the most valuable gift card is one that comes with a promotional value, such as free shipping.
The promotional value is typically the price paid for the card in addition to the value of the item.
Mancusos research also found that many consumers use the gift cards to pay for services that aren’t available through the card.
For instance, in one recent study, customers who used a card to pay their gas bill to get free gas were more likely than people who didn’t use the card to say they would pay their monthly bill for the next month.
To make sure you know how much value a virtual credit card offers, the consumer bureau offers a free online calculator called the Card Scorecard, which offers a summary of a consumer’s card usage and its estimated value.
You can also get an overview of the amount you’ll pay on your next card renewal if you sign up for an annual account.