The first phase of the Avios changes kicked in on March 1st when Iberia Plus published its new earning chart for both Avios points and Elite Points.
What I wanted to know was this – going forward, will it be more worthwhile crediting BA flights to Iberia Plus if you are looking for status (lounge access etc)?
The Iberia Plus elite status levels are outlined here – click on Iberia Plus then Elite Points and Earn Elite Points. In summary, the Iberia scheme works like this:
The main status levels in Iberia Plus are Silver (= BA Bronze, no lounge access), Gold (= BA Silver, lounge access) and Platinum (= BA Gold, lounge access)
Unlike BA, where all members have different qualifying years, Iberia uses a fixed scheme running from April 1st to March 31st
You need 1,100 Elite Points for Silver, 2,500 for Gold and 6,250 (or 12,500 over two years) for Platinum
I don’t know if Iberia Plus has a ‘soft landing’ if you fail to retain status
In scale, the Elite Points rates for Iberia flights seem similar to the British Airways programme. British Airways will give you 140 tier points each way (25% of BA Silver) for the longer one-way long-haul routes whilst Iberia gives 500-600 Elite Points (25%-ish of Iberia Plus Gold).
More relevant for HFP readers is what happens if you credit British Airways flights to Iberia after April 1st. You can see the British Airways Elite Points earning rate here – click on ‘View earning tables’.
You will get 500-600 Elite Points per one-way British Airways long-haul flight so around 25% of Iberia Gold (= BA Silver in terms of benefits). That is little different from earning 120-140 BA tier points via the Executive Club.
At the bottom end of the scale, giving 15 Elite Points for discounted economy – when you need 2,250 for Iberia Gold (= BA Silver) – is little different from British Airways giving 5 tier points and requiring 600 for British Airways Silver.
There may be some quirks in these charts which I haven’t yet picked up. For now, though, I don’t see any good reason to start crediting your flights to Iberia Plus instead of British Airways, despite the reduced BA tier point earning for discount economy. You will need a similar number of flights to earn status and there is the guaranteed ‘soft landing’ with BA if you drop down.
There MAY be good reasons to credit your British Airways flights to American Airlines or other oneworld partners after April 28th. We need to wait and see if all of BA’s other partners follow the lead of Qatar Airways and adjust their BA earning chart.