Shoppers are failing to cash in the points built up on store loyalty cards, new research suggests.

The research, conducted by the International Consumer Loyalty Programmes (ICLP), found that 23% of shoppers have failed to collect over £2bn in rewards from cards such as Sainsbury’s Nectar and Tesco’s Clubcard.

Those that do cash in their points save up for bigger rewards such as free tickets, weekends away or electrical goods, the research said.

Tony Clarke, director of ICLP said: “The consumers often prefers rewards to discount because the perceived value of the reward usually far exceeds the discount that would be offered.”

An estimated 27 million cards are in circulation in the UK, with 20% of households owning at least nine cards.