The madness continues …. the Iberia ‘90,000 Avios for £200’ deal ends tonight. Let’s do the maths.

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In all of the years I’ve been running Head for Points, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a deal get as much attention – globally – as the Iberia ‘90,000 Avios for booking 10 flights you don’t need to fly’ offer this weekend.

We’ve certainly had good Tesco Direct deals in the past which were more generous, such as 2,400 Avios (1,000 Clubcard points) for a £10 printer ink which you could resell on eBay.  These were glitches and got no attention outside the UK.  This deal is NOT a mistake – Iberia has been keen to tell us that! – and it is getting huge amounts of traction across the world.

You can book the Iberia deal here if you still want to jump in or find out more.

To summarise:

  • You get 9,000 Avios for every Iberia, Iberia Express or Air Nostrum flight you book by 11pm UK time on Sunday
  • You can earn up to 90,000 Avios per Iberia Plus account
  • You must book on
  • Your booking must include your Iberia Plus frequent flyer number
  • Your 9,000 bonus Avios will arrive within 10 days
  • Iberia has confirmed that you do not have to take the flights – you won’t lose the Avios if you don’t
  • One-way flights work fine

So …. if you can find 10 cheap one-way flights on for €25 each (Santander to or from Madrid still had availability at that price last night, obviously prices are lowest in Winter) then you are getting 90,000 Avios cheaply.

There are restrictions on using these Avios and I STRONGLY recommend reading my article from yesterday here before booking.

Iberia 90000 Avios

Let’s put the deal in context

I am guessing that between 50,000 and 100,000 seats will be booked under this promotion.  If you think that sounds high, remember that it only requires 5,000 to 10,000 people to book their full quota to hit that number.  You also need to remember that non-UK frequent flyer sites have been going crazy over this deal too – virtually all of them, I have to say, giving less focus to the potential downside risks than we have.

What would 100,000 booked seats mean?

Iberia Group carries 85,000 passengers per day, so this equates to over one full day of passenger numbers!

If you assume all of the bookings are for Q4 2018 and Q1 2019, as that is when fares are cheapest, it will add 0.6% to Iberia’s load factor for those two quarters (management bonuses all round!)

If Iberia pays 0.75p per Avios to Avios Group (which is my best guess) then it will have to hand over £6,750,000 to AGL

Assuming an average ticket price of £20, Iberia will therefore lose £4,750,000, albeit IAG overall sees no loss

The promotion seems to have wiped out every single Iberia seat priced at under €20 for the next 12 months, and a large proportion of those priced under €25

Iberia will see a disproportionately high number of ‘no shows’ over the next year which could have a longer term impact on planning as they will lose track of the ‘genuine’ no show rate which is how they decide how much they can oversell a flight

It is all very odd and, frankly, probably beyond anything that Iberia thought would happen.  There will be some interesting discussions in Madrid on Monday.  Iberia cannot realistically go back on the deal, however, given that it briefed various websites including Head for Points on Friday about how the offer worked.

You can book via the special offer page here if you still want to give it a go before 11pm tonight.  (I’m saying 11pm because that is midnight in Spain and I think Iberia will use that as the closing time.)

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

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  1. Anyone else having an issue logging in to their iberia plus account.

    I’ve been sent a new pin but it still doesn’t work.

  2. I’m wondering why I booked 10 tickets within minutes of each other. I’ve received emails confirming the flights. One credit card transaction was processed on Monday, but no sign of the other transactions

  3. Rob MC says:

    All my flights have been charged to my amex now

    • Do all IB avios redemption have to be ex-Spain? And I think partner airline redemptions can never be changed? Is that correct?


      • Genghis says:


      • the real harry1 says:

        yep it was actually news to me that you can redeem IB points flying BA direct from LHR (for example)! Shows how attentive I’ve been over the years 🙂

        Nothing lost there in the past because you don’t get RFS concession, I checked our flights out to the place in the sun and fees were about £32.50 (instead of £17.50).

        So if the points CAN’T be transferred out to BA, this is one way to use them cheaply for us, might even be a preferred way if I get more concerned about running a -90,000 point IB balance!

        And you can redeem IB points on the usual Oneworld partner flights, no need for the flight to originate in Spain.

        That’s why our USA friends were getting so excited about a cheap 90K points – they can use them on American Airlines, (and British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LATAM Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian, S7 Airlines, SriLankan Airlines) plus a load of others

        • Fantastic and thank you for such a helpful response. Looking forward to the 90k!!

        • AA redemptions off an IB account are non refundable and non changeable though.

        • However, note that where the actual taxes are less than the RFS price, IB charges the same for a BA flight as BA does. So, some BA flights booked as one-ways from Spain have a charge of only €9 whether booked through either BA or IB

        • Optimus Prime says:

          So if you have to cancel/reschedule due to illness – does your travel insurance help at all?

        • That is what travel insurance is for. Biggest mistake most people make is not buying it as soon as they book meaning they are not covered if something happens shortly after.

        • Optimus Prime says:

          @Rob – what can you claim? Both miles and fees or just miles?

        • Optimus Prime says:

          I meant “or just fees”.

  4. Yep. I don’t get people who only book single trip insurance.

    • ?
      Why wouldn’t you buy single trip policy if you’re only planning a one-off trip or a big gap before travelling again?

      Regardless of whether you’re buying a single trip or annual policy Rob’s point is to ensure you’re covered from the point you book, not leave it to the last minute.

  5. Reports of bookings being cancelled on Flyertalk. Emails being sent from Iberia saying booking has not gone through. Wonder if this is really the case.

    • I don’t think so.

      In reality. Thousands of people have booked from all over the world. It’s highly likely that some have genuinely not gone through for a multitude of reasons.

      I personally think it will be honoured – but wouldn’t be surprised if it takes longer than the 10 days.

  6. Optimus Prime says:

    Quick question… if your partner does not have enough Avios for her redemption but you do is there any way for her to use them? (without paying to have them transferred).

    I’ve just looked at Combine My Avios from BAEC but that lets you move only your Avios across to your own Iberia Plus account, not to your partner’s.

    • No, not unless you are BA Gold which lets you do a free 27k transfer.

      You could book the flight from your account of course but you are paying 100% then.

      • CapeCam says:

        Rob – on a seperate issue. if i want to transfer avios out of my daughters Bronze Account to my GGL account do i have to pay to transfer them out ? Ids the free gold transfer only for “outgoing” avios

  7. CapeCam says:

    Has anybody been credited the Avios Yet ?

    Also when i log onto my iberea plus account none of my future bookings are showing. When i enter the PNR manually it shows the booking tells me it was booked on and not my home country’s site it then redirects me to the USA site. I hope they are not trying to get out of this deal by suggesting i booked from an ineligible territory

  8. Michael says:

    Is it possible to reserve a seat on Iberia website if a BA Silver card holder?
    Is it possible to take a hold bag even with basic hand baggage only fare? [I’m almost certain yes]

  9. the real harry1 says:

    Oh dear (HT Prospero FT)
    ‘It is worth noting that when IB Plus and BA Executive Club eventually migrate to the common Avios platform, the balances belonging to an individual’s IB Plus and BAEC accounts will be merged into a single balance. Once the migration is complete, members will be able redeem from and add credit to their single Avios “bank account” from both or any one of the programmes they belong to. However, IB Plus and BAEC will continue as two very distinct programmes.

    I chatted to BA’s Global Executive Club Proposition Manager earlier this month about the migration who indicated the migration is still in the middle distance’

    • the real harry1 says:

      I think I can easily redeem about 120K points before Dec 1st deadline

      I might have to sort out a jaunt to Salamanca to spend the rest in 2019, my daughter studies Spanish so I might enrol her on an intensive Spanish course – which would be great fun for the both of us

    • That’s because the IT is a joke. This has been on the way for at least 2 years though and we have discussed it on here. What is interesting is, assuming people move their IB Avios to BA, whether that creates a fixed link in the system which means that any negative balance in IB will eventually catch up with you.

      • Michael says:

        I’d be surprised if they ever manage this migration successfully in the “middle distance”.
        The IT integration are incredibly costly, given how poorly the platforms integrate today and thinking about the recent disaster that is the Aer Lingus Aer Club launch (which is STILL causing headaches for all involved including customers missing Avios for flights taken on Aer Lingus and partner airlines in particular), we might all be safe enough to transfer straight from IB to BA and worry about the implications much further down the road.
        Mind you, some of the Iberia redemption options seem quite attractive and more competitive than BA (ignoring BA 241 voucher).

        • the real harry1 says:

          But there are ways around that – you don’t have to find a new platform. Eg you could just use the BAEC platform and make IB use that.

          A bit like one bank taking over another and saying to the smaller bank: from now on, your customers will use our platform. And shifting their customers over.

          You don’t have to do a TSB! ie they were forced to find a new platform as Lloyds said they couldn’t carry on using the Lloyds platform.

      • You can have multiple BAEC accounts, and you can get away with it for a while. I know someone in our family who does just this …

        Perhaps setting up a 2nd BAEC account, moving IB Avios across, but booking for a 3rd party from that BAEC account (ie NOT giving BAEC the excuse to track you down as having dupe accounts once they have access to your passenger data….)?

  10. I tried to use Iberia Avios a few months ago for an internal flight on Qantas in Australia. When I was originally doing my research (I have now managed to book all flights in Business for our trip to New Zealand next year) it showed several OW partner airlines Avios availability for various routes, including Sydney to Brisbane. Availability for this is wide open on BA and Qantas but Iberia now tells me there is no availability. It does the same for many routes where I know there is availability. So my question is: is this just down to Iberia’s rubbish IT, or does anyone know whether it is just NOT possible to use Avios for OW redemptions via Iberia? If it should be possible, anyone have any idea as to how I might be able to book? A more ‘meaty’ example – before the dates I wanted from Kuala Lumpur to Melbourne with Malaysian Airlines were available, I could book on a different date with Avios via Iberia, if 8’d wanted too, for less Avios and taxes than BA charged but when it got to the dates I wanted I had to book via BA as Iberia’s site refused to show any availability even though, at the time, Malaysian airlines Avios availability was good. It cost me 15,000 extra with BA than Iberia used to show for the same route in Business class! If I actually get my Iberia Avios from this promo, I’ll be using for short haul from Madrid or London – everywhere else seems impossible on their site!

    • OW redemptions via IB must be booked as return flights. Is that the issue?

      • Many thanks Rob – Yes, that does appear to be the reason. I must have missed that ‘T & C’ somewhere along the line.

  11. Have these Avios credited yet for most people? I bought a week ago now, but have nada in my account.

  12. Bruce says:

    No credit yet. Fingers crossed.

  13. FlyTheFriendlySkies says:

    I would actually expect the points to credit from Friday July 6th, that being the 10th working day following the end of the promo on Sunday June 24th…

  14. Well I’ve just gotten an e-mail from BA welcoming me to the BAE Club with a new account number. WTF, I only logged in yesterday to my actual BAEC account to transfer Avios (I have my eyes on my prize at IB+ and I’m ready to pounce!).

    What’s all this then, I’ll have to ring them and calling BA is an agony second only to waxing my bum crack.

    • Ignore that, it’s just the Avios site itself merging into BAEC. They’ve merged the two accounts, but none of that was clear from the e-mail. (anyway, blah, blah!)

  15. Jimbob says:

    It appears all new Iberia plus accounts have been blocked pending ID checks, if this applies to you (like me), it might be wise to get the id forms to them as soon as possible, as I suspect there will be a large queue!

    To check if your account has been blocked, attempt to sign in, if no joy, then ask for a pin reset, this will lead you to the page saying account blocked, and allow you to submit your id info.

    • EvilGazebo says:

      Yep, this happened to me before the promo on my existing account open for years (but might have been me actually messing up the login too many times).

      But it’s now happened on my wife’s account which was opened specifically to take advantage of the promo. And it’s definitely not down to user error this time……

  16. David says:

    I was sufficiently suspicious of this offer to create a new Iberia account 10 days ago using an email address that i have never used for BAEC. The first wiff of oddness today was an automated promotional email from BAEC to that new email address (the one that BAEC has never been given), but the email was promoting a ‘double avios’ shopping offer related to my 15 year old BAEC account. It showed my mileage, tier points, status from that account all correctly.

    So somehow they have linked the two accounts using other personal data.

  17. Simon Parker says:

    OK – I had the login error screen, so hit the ‘reset PIN’ box.
    It took me though to a page to reset my pin and asked me who my paternal grandfather was.
    I’d never given them this information, but putting the correct answer in worked and let me reset my security question and PIN.
    It then refreshed my login and now shows 440 points, which I assume is the base points for the flights (I managed to book 11 instead of 10, in all the excitement).

  18. Simon Parker says:

    Hmm – it’s not the flights points.
    I’ve checked the account history and they appear to have merged an existing Iberia/Avios account, which I opened when they had the Vinoseleccion offer a while back.

    This is the complete breakdown:

    Date Description Sector Avios Elite Points
    12/22/17 Iberia Plus Welcome Other services 200
    11/21/17 Vinoseleccion Promotion Shopping 180
    11/21/17 Earning Avios For Purchase Vinoseleccion Shopping 60

  19. Simon Parker says:

    NOW they’ve locked the account and are asking me to confirm my identity…

    They are going to make this difficult for everyone, aren’t they?

    • I have had an Iberia Plus card for years which I have kept gently ticking over. Logged in fine last week, now it says the PIN is not correct. Tried changing the PIN firstly by inputting the old PIN, to which it said I can’t use the number I used before. So why didn’t you log me in originally then? Tried a new number to which it gave an error message. Meltdown in progress?

  20. Claire says:

    I managed to get into my account earlier by using the PIN reset on the app but tried again on the website and it’s insisting I send in the form and my passport, so I’ve emailed them and will see how long that takes. I’m still logged in on the app even though I can’t access it on the website.

    Also saw on GSTP that Iberia have confirmed to him tonight that the points are definitely on the way in the next few days, they’re just doing the security checks first. Fingers crossed!

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