Do credit card rewards expire? If you earn rewards from your credit cards, then you might be concerned that they could expire at some point. But, unfortunately, there is no industry standard for when your rewards could expire, as it varies by the type of rewards that you earn, and the cards with which you earn them. Some credit cards offer rewards that never expire.

Different Types of Credit Card Rewards and Expiration

There are many types of credit card rewards that you can earn, including points, miles and cash back.

Travel and Miles: In the travel category, for instance, there are different types of rewards programs, such as airline credit cards, hotel-branded credit cards, those issued by banks, and beyond. When you use an airline credit card to earn frequent flyer miles, the rewards you earn may be subject to the airline’s policies for its frequent flyer program. For instance, with some programs, rewards can expire within a set timeframe determined by the issuer, such as at 12 months or longer. On the other hand, in some programs, the rewards never expire. Always check your agreement for the full details.

Points and Cash Back: Additionally, rewards can come in the form of general points or in cash back, and each of these programs can be subject to different expiration policies. You might lose any points or cash back when you close your account. You may also lose them if your account is closed by the card issuer due to default or delinquency. Some programs don’t have expiration dates for the rewards you earn.

How Discover Card’s Reward Programs Work

With the Discover Card, you can earn either Cashback Bonus®, or Miles specifically with the Discover it® Miles Card. But either way, your rewards don’t expire. Cashback Bonus can be redeemed for gift cards, instant eCertificates, charitable donations, statement credits or an electronic deposit to your bank account. Miles can be redeemed as credits toward purchases in the travel category, as well as for cash.

If your account is closed or you have not used it within 18 months, you don’t lose your rewards. Instead, Discover will credit your account with your Cashback Bonus® or Miles balance depending on your card type. To redeem your Cashback Bonus® or Miles, you can visit or call 1-800-347-3085, 24 hours a day/7 days a week and choose how to redeem your rewards.

Redeem Miles: Starting at 1 Mile, you can redeem for cash as an electronic deposit to your bank account or for a credit for Travel Purchases on your statement made within the last 180 days. Travel Purchases include airline tickets, hotel rooms, car rentals, travel agents, online travel sites and commuter transportation. Redemption may not be available for approximately 24-48 hours if your card is reported lost or stolen.

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