Why are BA Singapore redemptions pricier via Iberia – and are there others?

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EDIT:  Iberia fixed this within the day!  Such is the power of HFP 🙂

An interesting quirk with the Iberia Avios redemption chart was picked up in this thread on Flyertalk.  For some reason Singapore, when flying BA, is in a more expensive redemption zone than it is when booked via British Airways Executive Club.

This isn’t meant to happen.

When you book a British Airways flight using Iberia Plus Avios – as many HFP readers may be doing if they earned 90,000 Avios via the recent Iberia promotion – it prices off the same chart as BA flights booked on ba.com.  It also uses the same peak and off-peak dates.

In simple terms, for long-haul flights the Avios and taxes required for a BA redemption should be identical whether you book via Iberia Plus or BA Executive Club.

(On short haul, Iberia Plus asks for more in taxes because Reward Flight Saver does not apply.)

Here is an example of what happens with Singapore.  Here is a First Class reward flight booked via British Airways Executive Club, as 280,000 Avios (Zone 8). Click to enlarge:

and here is EXACTLY the same flight booked via Iberia Plus, showing a cost of 400,000 Avios (Zone 9):

This is almost certainly an error.  It isn’t as if this is a destination where BA cheats with the distances – Cape Town, for example, should be in Zone 7 but British Airways puts it in the cheaper Zone 6.  Iberia agrees and treats Cape Town as Zone 6.

However, I’m interested to know if there are any other destinations where Iberia is charging a different Avios rate to British Airways.  It would obviously be preferable if Iberia was cheaper 🙂  Let us know if you find any.

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  1. Buddy says:

    Beijing London.
    Was booking PEK-LHR over the summer in first. I had secured 27,000 avios in the recent Iberia promotion and was planning to supplement from my BA account for the full amount. Did a search on both BA and Iberial just to confirm they had the same availability and realised it was pricing 120,000 and Iberia and 100,000 on BA, so ended up just booking it on BA and will use the Iberia avios for something else.

  2. Archie says:

    Apologies for OT: Is it possible to transfer my wife’s Virgin miles to my Virgin account?

    • No

      • Archie says:

        How about opening a household account (like BA’s)? Or you need to have a status in VS?

      • ChrisC says:

        Yes you can transfer them over if you pay – using the gift miles function

        Only VS golds can have a HHA account

        Ability to use miles from different accounts only works if there are enough miles in each account to pay for a whole flight sector. If say you needed 30k for an upgrade and had 23k in one account and 7k in another you can’t pool those..

    • @mkcol says:

      However if you & your wife are travelling together, you can do a redemption booking using both sets of miles even if one account doesn’t have sufficient on its own. Call them up to sort it out.

  3. Akkers says:

    Seems like this article has done the trick – thanks Rob! Certainly when I do a dummy booking now I am getting correct pricing whereas before I was getting incorrect pricing. So many thanks for getting this sorted for me Rob! Now just need to wait for T-355 for seats I want to be released.

  4. Robman says:

    Off-topic, when can we expect another Qatar Airways business class promotion, maybe even the one which requires you to buy 2 tickets to get the reduced price? I need to be in Durban in late September and also require 560 remaining points to keep my gold card for the following year. A Qatar business class flight ex-Europe to Johannesburg would be perfect but at present all I’m seeing is fares from £2400 upwards. Any advice appreciated thanks.

  5. Chris says:

    Redeemption from Hong Kong appears to be in the same situation too 🙁

  6. the real harry1 says:

    O/T datapoint I picked up a Mokka for my £1 Europcar trip to LHR, pretty happy with that as it fits 2 big cases & 1 cabin bag in the back. Nice driving height, I guess you’d call it a small SUV.

    Also got lucky with T-24 & moved us up the plane 7A & row 10 for the kids – looks like exit row still shows good promise for tomorrow 🙂

    • Mark2 says:

      did you mange to get a £1 car back?

      • the real harry1 says:

        Getting a free lift with my wife 🙂

        But I think £1 hires from LHR are rare as hen’s teeth

    • Problem is with the £1 rental, it’s luck of the draw what you get. We had – I think – a Clio last time I did this, which was fine as it was for two of us going away for a weekend.

      Would be wary of trying it if I had a party of five plus suitcases to move…

      • the real harry1 says:

        Yep I was slightly concerned, only 4 as my wife is following next week but still… 🙂

        As it is, the 2 in the back will have Mr Bags in the middle lol – cue plenty of moaning, I’m sure.

      • Kavajo says:

        I’ve done this a few times and called the office the day before, asking for a larger car. Last time got a 9 seater van. I think it’s supposed to be at least a group C.

    • Abhey says:

      Got a Jaguar xe on the £1 deal. Nearly thought about changing to a later flight.

    • Lev441 says:

      I had an extremely disappointing experience. With Europcar – booked the £1 from my local branch, got there to be told they’d given the car to someone else as I wasn’t there at band on 10am. Didn’t recieve any missed phone call or voicemail even though they claim to have tried ringing me ‘loads’. Really screwed up my days plans.

  7. Graham Walsh says:

    OT Not sure if this has been posted, but been off line working in the US. Good video on LHR and it’s costs https://youtu.be/wdU1WTBJMl0

    • Pareet Shah says:

      Saw it yesterday, really interesting. It’s a great YouTube channel

      • James says:

        Interesting article but some of the financials and mechanisms described aren’t correct. I sign off enough HAL invoices and sit on cost governance forums, as an airline, to know!

  8. Delbert says:

    After yet another BA IT meltdown can we expect to see Alex Cruz in his Hi Vis tomorrow.

  9. Samuel says:

    Can we use the power of HFP and make CX correct their IT glitches when trying to search for direct flights on CX using BAEC?

    I can find seats on SIN-HKG-TYO but when I search HKG-TYO or HKG-SIN v.v. there are no seats in any cabin!

    • This can be done on purpose. Iberia does it (you might find New York – Madrid – Santander when you can’t find New York – Madrid) and American has started doing it.

      • Margaret says:

        BA have done this for years. I had to book JFK-LHR-EDI 2 years ago when i needed to fly home as the first flight want available on it’s own. I have family in Edinburgh, so it was fine (If tiring!)

  10. Samuel says:

    Also, IB is charging way too much for an ex-HKG redemption on BA. How come a first class redemption to LHR costs £230 when you are not supposed to charge any fuel surcharges from HKG at all?

  11. Interesting video on how airports make money, using LHR as the main example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdU1WTBJMl0

  12. Nick G says:

    Im so glad you’ve raised this …. I’ve been looking at Qatar redemptions rob and find that Iberia charge way more avios on some routes ex EU than BA does. Last week it got daft when I was trying to figure out the tax differences on IB versus BA plus the issue of availability…..by the way I use my example of IB wanting 100k avios versus BA 75k avios return on a Frankfurt-Doha route. Taxes are identical avios required on the same dates are not!

    Also it says it’s a 777-300er anyone know if that has the q suite?

  13. IndiaCharlie says:

    O/t I intend to fly at least half (maybe 70%) of my iberia 9k bookings and am wondering if I am able to change to my BAEC to get tier points or will that invalidate the deal and the points get clawed back? Any thoughts.

    • KevMc says:

      Yes you can, but you need to use the Finnair Manage My Booking site to update it from the Iberia number, which it will be using by default.

  14. Bails from Oz says:

    Hi Rob, it doesn’t look like Iberia has fixed it yet for HKG-LHR. BA charges 102,000 Avios and 33GBP, while IB_ charges the same Avios but a whopping 264 Euro. Perhaps if you could go back to them and see if they can fix it as well.

  15. TLV – NCL in First, BA is 50k Avios and Iberia 54500 Avios. Not a big difference, but interesting.

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