Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Iberia launches low-tax Avios redemptions to Tokyo and Shanghai

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

Following the recent announcement of its new service to Johannesburg, starting in August, Iberia has revealed some more big news.

Iberia has announced a new ‘three flights per week’ service from Madrid to Tokyo from October 2016.

It will depart on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, using a brand new Airbus A330 with a two class configuration.

Iberia A330 350

The 13.20 departure time means that it is possible to make a same day connection from the UK.

I tried to get some typical tax numbers for Iberia flights yesterday.  However, this is Iberia we’re talking about and the only response I could get when selecting Narita flights (which are loaded in the system) was:

An error has occurred. We apologize for the inconvenience and ask you to please try again after a few minutes. If the error persists please contact us.

You should expect the tax in Business Class to be under €200 return and no more than €175 in Economy.   You MUST book through Iberia Plus to get this pricing.  If you book via ba.com you will get a large fuel surcharge added to your ticket.

As long as your Iberia Plus account is 90 days old and has earned 1 Avios point (a transfer from Amex Membership Rewards would do it) you can use ‘Combine My Avios’ on ba.com to send them across for free.

To put this in context, a flight from London to Tokyo on BA will set you back £531 of taxes and charges – although, with Iberia, you need to factor in the cost of getting to Madrid.

One downside ….

The new Iberia A330-200 aircraft, whilst brand new, are not ‘Avios friendly’ if you are looking for Business Class redemptions.

With only 19 business class seats, availability will be tight.  Iberia is still be releasing a minimum of two business class seats per flight however – they are already showing.

And Shanghai too ….

Iberia has also announced a new route to Shanghai, also to be flown with a brand new A330-200.

The airline has yet to receive the necessary permissions for the flight so it is not releasing any timetable information, except to say that flights will begin in the Winter.  I’ll let you know when I hear something.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (June 2022)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards.

Until 18th July 2022 there is an astonishing special offer on these cards. You get 50,000 Avios on the Avios Plus Mastercard and 10,000 Avios on the free Avios Mastercard. You can apply here. We strongly recommend getting the Avios Plus card whilst this offer is running.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

50,000 Avios for signing up (A CRAZY SPECIAL OFFER!) and an upgrade voucher for spending ….. Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

10,000 Avios for signing up (SPECIAL OFFER) and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

SPECIAL OFFER: The sign-up bonus on Amex Gold is increased from 20,000 Membership Rewards points to 30,000 Membership Rewards points until 19th July 2022. This card is free for the first year.

American Express Amex Gold

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,000 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (37)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Richmond says:

    Looks like fares to NRT were loaded yesterday and generated either error fare or very cheap tickets. Tax on economy is showing as 78 euro RT.

    • Rob says:

      I like the sound of €78!

      It’s just too far for me to do it for a HFP review, although I’d love to do the new Iberia planes. It is one thing to pop down to the Middle East on a 6 hour flight with 3 hours time difference and stay 2 nights, but going to Tokyo via Madrid would not go down well with my wife!

  • Mr blue says:

    Thanks for the heads up on this Rob. According to Google flights they operate on Tues, Fri & Sun. From 18th Oct.

  • Mr blue says:

    87500 in business and 52500 in eco EW. I was told by the awfully rude IB cs agent that there is no off peak pricing on this route. Pfft. I for one won’t be spending my avios or £££ with them regardless of how cheap this is! Appauling CS.

    • Rob says:

      That can’t be right, they can’t start pulling their off-peak calendar for particular routes!

      • Jon Dear says:

        Taxes are slightly more than expected:
        ECO BLUE – 64,750 Avios + €247.35 (RT)
        ECO 97,150 Avios + €247.35 (RT)
        Business is still showing an ERROR.

  • jonnyfive says:

    Ok IB Business class avios seats are now loading as of this morning, albeit at a ridiculous rate:
    PEAK 210,000 Avios + 187.21 € dec11-14
    OFF PEAK 170,000 Avios + 187.21 €

    For comparison: BA Business is 150k avios from the UK, OK the taxes are around £500 with BA but but when you factor in extra 20K avios and positioning flights works out roughly the same money wise.= no connections /wasting time in MAD.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.