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BMO Financial Group
BMO Bank of Montreal

BMO Bank of Montreal

August 22, 2013 06:00 ET

78 Per Cent of Students Planning to Use Rewards Points and Discount Programs to Bolster Budgets-BMO

- Poll reveals 78 per cent of post-secondary students plan to use rewards and discount programs to reduce day-to-day expenses

- Seventy-seven per cent have set a budget before heading off to school

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Aug. 22, 2013) - According to a BMO poll released today, three-quarters of students (77 per cent) are drawing up a budget before heading off to school, and a growing number are using rewards and points programs to help offset costs during the school year.

According to the poll, conducted by Pollara:

  • More than three-quarters of students (78 per cent) plan to use rewards or discount programs next year to offset expenses, up ten points from 2012 (68 per cent)
  • The majority (54 per cent) plan to use these programs most of the time, up significantly from 2012 (38 per cent)
  • Students in Alberta are most likely to use rewards and discount cards (90 per cent), while those in Quebec are the least likely at 60 per cent

"Students can find real savings and value by leveraging rewards and student discount programs to offset everyday spending," said Nick Mastromarco, Director, BMO Bank of Montreal. "For example, many no-fee credit cards offer both rewards and other discount or point programs that students can use to offset their everyday spending and get the most out of their dollar while away at school."

BMO's no-fee student credit card with free, built-in SPC Card benefits provides students with discounts of 10 to 15 percent at hundreds of fashion, food, entertainment, lifestyle and travel retailers across Canada, plus their choice to earn AIR MILES reward miles or CashBack rewards on all of their card purchases.

Budgeting

The poll also found:

  • One-in-five students (20 per cent) sets a fixed monthly/yearly budget, 57 per cent set a rough budget, while 23 per cent have not created a budget at all
  • Nine-in-ten (89 per cent) make at least some effort to track their spending, with reading bank statements (60 per cent) being the most common method
  • One-in-five (22 per cent) tracks spending using mobile apps
Overall Atlantic Quebec Ontario Prairies Alberta B.C.
Fixed budget 20 % 21 % 13 % 22 % 16 % 18 % 31 %
Rough budget 57 % 59 % 63 % 53 % 59 % 60 % 53 %
No budget 23 % 20 % 24 % 25 % 25 % 21 % 16 %

"In order to manage ongoing expenses, parents and students should work together to establish a comprehensive budget ahead of the school year," Mr. Mastromarco added. "However, creating a budget is only the first step - it's important to monitor your daily, monthly and annual expenses closely to help keep finances in check."

Students should also make use of online resources available to them, such as the BMO Student Budget Calculator - a free tool available on BMO.com that allows students to create a budget for the school year.

BMO offers free* banking for students, and is the only bank to extend this offer for a year after graduation. A BMO Student Line of Credit allows students continuing access to funds throughout their studies. They may use as little or as much as needed up to their approved credit limit. In addition, students can make interest-only payments while in school and for one year after graduation.

To learn more about how BMO can help make student life more affordable, both during school and after graduation, stop by a BMO branch today or visit here for more details.

The Pollara online survey was completed between July 22 and July 25, 2013, with a sample of 602 post-secondary students. A probability sample of this size would yield results accurate to ± 4.0 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

* Applies to the Kids, Teens and Students Discount Programs in the Plus Plan when a Primary Chequing or Premium Rate Savings account is opened. Recent Post-Secondary School Graduates are eligible for one year of free banking under the Student Discount Program. Customer is responsible for all the fees of any transactions, services and products not included in the Everyday Banking Plan.

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $555 billion as at April 30, 2013, and more than 46,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

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