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Purchasing airline miles or hotel points generally isn’t a great value, but that can all change when a lucrative bonus is released. And one of these promotions is about to end.
Now through July 25, you can get 50% bonus points when purchasing Iberia Avios. And unlike many other similar promotions, there’s no need to buy a large amount to get this sweet bonus. You’ll get a 50% bonus even when buying just 2,000 Avios.
If you maximize this promotion, you can purchase Avios at just 1.35 cents each. That’s less than TPG’s valuation, which pegs Avios at 1.5 cents each, making this promotion certainly worth a look if you know how to utilize the Iberia Plus or British Airways Executive Club programs. For those who need a refresher, here’s some of our tips on how to maximize Iberia Avios and — since you can transfer Iberia Avios to BA Avios at 1:1 — how to maximize British Airways Avios, especially on American Airlines flights.
Here’s one example that I booked and flew at the end of 2018: American Airlines award flights for 17,000 Avios per person for an itinerary for which AA was simultaneously charging 80,000 AAdvantage miles:
Iberia awards on American Airlines flights start at just 11,000 Avios round-trip plus around $19 in taxes. At the maximized 1.35 cents per Avios purchase rate, that means that you can score short-haul American Airlines awards for as little as $167 including taxes and fees. While one-way AA awards briefly showed through Iberia last year, that was a temporary glitch, leaving round-trip awards as your only option.
Longer trips of up to 2,000 total flight miles cost 17,000 Avios. Those trips would cost $248 all-in at the 1.35 cents purchase rate plus taxes. For example, TPG Senior Editor Nick Ewen recently got some incredible value from one of these Iberia awards for a round-trip flight from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) to Charlotte (CLT), redeeming 17,000 Avios + $18.70.
That exact same flight would’ve set him back over $700 out of pocket!
Another great use of Avios is flying in Iberia business class across the Atlantic. Flights on off-peak dates start at 68,000 Avios round-trip plus around $205 in taxes in fees from gateways in the Northeast — like Iberia’s A330 from Boston:
Or, fly Iberia’s brand new Airbus A350-900 business class from New York’s Kennedy (JFK):
At 1.35 cents each, those Avios would cost $918 — bringing the total cost to around $1,123 for a transatlantic round-trip in business class.
Even if you aren’t buying at the optimal rate, you can still get a great deal. If you already have or can transfer some Avios, you can buy 67,500 Avios for $950. Adding in the taxes and fees, that brings the total cost to $1,155 round-trip.
Details of This Promotion
The regular price for buying Iberia Avios starts as high as 2.7 Euro cents per point, which is currently 3.04 US cents per Avios. But, you can drop that price to as low as 1.2 Euro cents per point (~1.35 US cents) with this promotion. While you’ll get the 50% bonus at any purchase level, the purchase rate varies depending on how many Avios you buy.
To save you the math, here are all of your options for buying Avios with this promotion (exchange rates accurate at time of publication):
|Purchase Rate||Bonus Avios||Total Avios||Cost (Euro)||Cost (USD)||US$ Cents
How to Buy Iberia Avios
To take advantage of the promotion, follow these steps:
- Log into your Iberia Plus account.
- At the top of the webpage, select “Buying or transferring Avios” through the Iberia Plus menu. You can also try this link.
- Select Purchase next to “All Iberia Plus customers.”
- Select the number of Avios you’d like to buy.
- Add your credit card details.
- Review the information, check the box to agree to the Terms and Conditions and click Pay Now to finalize the purchase.
There’s a standard limit of 100,000 purchased Avios per calendar year, per account. However, this limit is being elevated to a maximum of 200,000 Avios per calendar year for this promotion.
Which Credit Card to Use
First, as the purchase currency is Euros, it’s important that you choose a credit card with no foreign transaction fees. Since this transaction is processed by Points.com, these purchases likely will not code as travel. So, you won’t get 3x points from the Chase Sapphire Reserve or the Citi Premier Card. While past purchases with the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card did earn 3x points per dollar spent on Points.com, more recent tests have resulted in just 1x point.
As a result, you’ll want to use the best non-bonus category credit card for your situation.
Alternatives to Buying Avios
Iberia Plus is a partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards (1:1) and American Express Membership Rewards (1:1). In TPG testing, Chase points transfer to Iberia Avios instantly but Amex points take about 48 hours arrive, so be sure to factor in that timeline if you’re trying to transfer Amex points directly to Iberia Plus for an award ticket.
However, if you have a British Airways account that’s been open for at least 90 days, you can transfer Amex points to British Airways Avios instantaneously (1:1) and then transfer BA Avios to Iberia Avios (also 1:1).
In addition to the 90-day rule, you need to make sure your personal information is listed identically in both carriers’ systems before you’re allowed to transfer between accounts. Your birth date, email address and name all have to match exactly before the transfer can occur.
This is The Points Guy’s permanent page about Iberia’s “buy miles” promotions, so you can bookmark it and check back regularly for the latest offer. Keep in mind you may see some reader comments referring to older deals below. Post last updated on July 10, 2019.
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One of the biggest benefits that this card offers is a Travel Together ticket (good for two years) that can be earned annually after you spend $30,000 in a calendar year. You'll earn 3 Avios per dollar spent on British Airways purchases and 1 Avios per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Earn 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
- Plus earn an additional 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $20,000 on your purchases within your first year of account opening.
- 3 Avios per $1 spent on purchases with British Airways, Aer Lingus, Iberia, and Level.
- 2 Avios per $1 spent on hotel accommodations, plus 1 Avios per $1 spent on all other purchases.
- 10% off British Airways flights starting in the US when you book by March 31, 2020.
- Every calendar year you make $30,000 in purchases on your British Airways Visa card, you'll earn a Travel Together Ticket good for two years.
- Pay no foreign transaction fees when you travel abroad.
- Simply tap to pay with your contactless British Airways Visa Signature Card. Just look for the contactless symbol at checkout. It's fast, easy and secure!