Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bits: Iberia launches 50% ‘buy Avios’ bonus, Delta adding fuel surcharges to Virgin redemptions?

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

News in brief:

Iberia launches a 50% ‘buy Avios’ bonus

Last week we saw a 50% bonus if you bought Avios points via British Airways Executive Club, AerClub or avios.com.

Iberia has launched its own 50% bonus Avios offer as you can see from this page.  You need to log in to see the discounted prices.

The Iberia system is a little odd as you can only buy certain numbers of points.  Once you get beyond 10,000 Avios then it must be a multiple of 5,000 Avios, pre bonus.

The maximum you can buy is 100,000 Avios – 150,000 with the bonus – for €1,800.  That works out at £1,565 so, basically, exactly 1p at the top end if you use a credit card with no foreign exchange fees.

I am not a buyer at this price.  I explained my logic in my article on the BA 50% bonus last week.  If you regret missing out last week, however, this is your second chance.  The offer runs until 1st June.

Remember that you cannot transfer Avios out of an Iberia Plus account until it is 90 days old, so there is no point opening one purely to take part in this offer.  If you don’t have an Iberia Plus account, I strongly recommend opening one so that you will have one which is older than 90 days in case a good Iberia offer comes along.

Virgin Atlantic 787

Delta adding surcharges to Virgin Atlantic redemptions?

If you have been crediting Virgin Atlantic flights to Delta SkyMiles because of the lack of fuel surcharges on Virgin Atlantic redemptions, you should take note.

Over the weekend, ‘carrier imposed surcharges’ of over $900 return suddenly appeared on Virgin Atlantic return flights from the US to the UK.  There are already such surcharges imposed on Virgin redemptions using Delta miles if you fly FROM the UK to US, which is why it makes sense for UK residents with Delta accounts to book Virgin Atlantic redemptions as 2 x one-ways.  This means that you avoid the surcharge on the return flight.

These surcharges disappeared on Monday.  Given Delta’s track record – which this US article summarises nicely – it is likely that they are about to introduce this change and were either testing the functionality or it went live too early.

You really shouldn’t be putting flights into Delta SkyMiles in any case.  The programme has become a bit of a joke in recent years.  Delta doesn’t even publish reward charts any longer and randomly hikes the price of reward flights every few months, with no prior – or even post event – notice.


HFP Virgin Atlantic Rewards credit card

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (September 2021)

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

You can choose from two official Virgin Atlantic credit cards (apply here, one has a bonus of 30,000 Points until 15th October 2021):

Virgin Rewards credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard

The UK’s most generous free Visa or Mastercard at 0.75 points / £1 Read our full review

Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

30,000 points bonus and the most generous non-Amex for day to day spending Read our full review

You can also earn Virgin Points from various American Express cards – and these have sign-up bonuses too.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for a year and comes with 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points:

Nectar American Express

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

Until 2nd November 2021, there is a special offer on The Platinum Card from American Express.

You will receive a sign-up bonus of 60,000 Amex points which converts into 60,000 Virgin Points.

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Virgin Points

(Want to earn more Virgin Points?  Click here to see our recent articles on Virgin Atlantic and Flying Club and click here for our home page with the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)

Comments (38)

  • Darren says:

    If you can wait 90 days for the transfer is it worthwhile opening one now or are there any other restrictions?

    • Rob says:

      You are also meant to have ‘activity’ on your account before you can transfer. Sometimes the site lets you buy and treats this as ‘activity’, sometimes it claims you can’t and need to do something else (transferring in 1000 Amex points is the easiest way to create activity).

    • Jason says:

      This promotion appears to work differently than the one a few months ago where transfers were bonus eligible. This one requires that you “give” miles and at a pitiful price even though the URL identifies the page as Transfer Points.

  • john says:

    Any tips on how to get value emptying ones Delta SkyMiles account? I have 10,545 miles that have been sitting there for a few years…

  • h1tvd says:

    I am wanting to book Intercontinental Porto for 3 nights in December (not xmas or new year though). Not sure what a reasonable nightly rate is as never looked at pricing this hotel before? Can anyone who has booked it before tell me roughly how much they paid nightly and if it was a good deal? Booking today for December which is one of the cheaper times I think, its 190 euros a night including brekkie.

    • RIcatti says:

      I don’t think IC Porto is particularly cheap at any season. Prices observed in that range 190EUR even for Spring/Autumn.

      Try Ambassador Weekend if you have the voucher.

      • Tracy says:

        Just used my ambassador voucher at IC Paris so will be paying for IC Porto nights, can’t see it being sold out in December so will hang off booking in the hope of a sale or promo, thanks

  • s879 says:

    OT: Do you get HH Diamond benefits if you book the hotel via an agent? I booked airline tickets via and agent and they have sent me a £10 off code. The Hilton Garden Inn is cheaper through them and then the £10 off makes it worth while. However, as a Diamond am entitled to free breakfast so don’t want to lose that and points if they don’t offer that benefit via agent bookings. Not worried about upgrade as just an overnight stay.

    • Rob says:

      If you mean an independent TA then possibly. If you mean Expedia etc then no. Remember you’d be giving up 2,000 Avios via the current promo plus your Hilton base points plus free breakfast.

    • Genghis says:

      IIRC it depends on the type of agent. An OTA – hotels.com / expedia / agoda and the like – no; a Corporate Travel Agent, perhaps. I’ve had points post with HRG and Hillgate but others have reported not getting points from other Corporate Travel Agents.

  • s879 says:

    Thanks. It’s Travel Trolley so a bit like Expedia. I guess i won’t be getting any benefits or points so best not book with them.

  • n says:

    Any ideas on what to do with 5k Delta miles?

    Sitting in my account for years but they don’t expire.

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.