Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Get 50% off ALL Avios redemptions on Iberia – eg NYC Business for 34,000 Avios + £133 return

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Iberia Plus has launched a genuinely impressive promotion.

Until 30th August, you will receive 50% off all Iberia Plus Avios redemptions, in all classes.

Yes, ALL Iberia Avios flights in ALL classes are half price.

You must fly between 1st September 2020 and 15th March 2021.

These deals are only valid for flights on Iberia, Iberia Express and Air Nostrum.

There are some great deals to be had here.  The best deals are to the US, most spectacularly to New York, Boston and other East Coast US cities.

Of course, there is no guarantee that you can fly to these cities before 15th March but your Avios ticket is refundable as usual.

Is there a catch?

Yes. The deal is only available to Spanish residents, although this is arguably illegal under EU law.

You will need to change the country of your address on your Iberia Plus account to ‘Spain’ in order to see these deals.

Before you do this – assuming you are happy to do so – you should add a payment card to your Iberia Plus profile. You may struggle afterwards as the website expects a Spanish-registered card for Spanish-registered users.

How low are taxes on Avios redemptions on Iberia?

The taxes are also peanuts compared to British Airways.

Even without a 50% discount on the mileage, redeeming Avios on Iberia is a bargain.

The tax savings can be huge.  A return Business Class Avios flight to New York costs just £130 in taxes and charges with Iberia.  British Airways wants £666.

It is also easy to connect in Madrid if you live outside London. Iberia has extended its UK connections network. Pre coronavirus, you could fly from Manchester and Edinburgh to Madrid with Iberia Express. There are also plenty of budget airline options.

Save 50% on Iberia redemption flights using Avios

Where can I go in the Iberia ‘50% off’ Avios sale?

The Iberia network is clearly in flux at the moment due to coronavirus. However, at the beginnng of 2020 it was operating the following long haul routes:

  • Africa: Algiers, Cairo, Casablanca, Dakar, Fez, Marrakech, Melilla,  Oran, Tangier
  • USA: Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco, Washington DC
  • South America: Bogota, Buenos Aires, Caracas, Guayaquil, Lima, Medellin, Mexico City, Montevideo, Quito, Rio do Janeiro, Santiago, Sao Paulo
  • Central America and Caribbean: Guatemala, Havana, Panama City, San Salvador, Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic), San Jose (Costa Rica), San Juan
  • Asia: Tokyo, Shanghai
  • Middle East: Tel Aviv

All of these are flown from Madrid.  Note that some of the African routes are served with short-haul aircraft.

What is Iberia’s business class seating like?

Iberia has no First Class.

The great news is that, over the last five years, Iberia has installed new fully flat seating across its long-haul fleet.  This is the A330 version:

Save 50% on Iberia redemption flights using Avios

I flew this on a Madrid to London flight as you can read (and see) here in my Iberia A340 business class review.  The new Iberia A350 business class seat has a few tweaks as our review shows.

We didn’t cover the announcement much on HFP, but Iberia has recently launched a Premium Economy product which is included in this sale:

Save 50% on Iberia redemption flights using Avios

How much will I pay for my half-price Avios redemption?

This isn’t as simple as it could be.  Iberia has its own Avios reward pricing chart with its own peak and off-peak dates (click to enlarge):

Iberia redemption chart


Iberia redemption Avios chart

This chart is NOT the same as the British Airways chart:

Save 50% on Iberia redemption flights using Avios

The charts are nearly the same, but not quite.

Let’s take New York as an example. Both British Airways and Iberia price New York as a Zone 5 redemption. However:

British Airways charges 100,000 Avios off-peak and 120,000 Avios peak for a Club World flight to New York

Iberia, as you can see above, charges 68,000 Avios off-peak and 100,000 Avios peak for a Business Class flight to New York

There are not many destinations which are served by both BA and Iberia, of course, so the opportunities for arbitrage are limited. You also need to factor in the cost and time of getting to Madrid, although if you live outside London it is not massively more complex than changing planes at Heathrow.

Iberia has different peak and off-peak dates too

Just to make life even more complex, Iberia has its own list of peak and off-peak dates. This is different from the British Airways list.

You can see the peak and off-peak Avios dates for British Airways and Iberia for 2020 here.

October half-term, for example, is a peak week for British Airways redemptions and peak pricing is in force. Iberia does not treat this week as a peak week. 

How low are Iberia’s taxes on Avios redemptions?

Iberia Plus does not charge the full range of airport taxes and fuel surcharges imposed by  This is a BIG thing and the main reason – as well as the better seat and potentially lower number of Avios needed – to consider Iberia seriously.

Let’s look at Madrid to New York in Business Class, return.  Iberia, when you book on, will charge 68,000 Avios (34,000 Avios in this sale) plus £133 return on an off-peak date.  See here:

A BA redemption from London to New York (via on a BA plane) on the same route in Club World costs 100,000 Avios plus £666 on an off-peak date!  That is, by any stretch, a big difference. It makes it well worth heading to Madrid to start your trip if you are price conscious.

Now, of course all is not plain sailing:

  • From the UK, you need to fly to Madrid. However, if you are not based in London you will be taking a connecting flight anyway. And the saving probably justifies not flying direct from London.
  • The London to Madrid flight cannot be booked on the same itinerary as the Madrid to New York flight or you will be obliged to pay UK Air Passenger Duty at the long-haul rate. Since you will have separate tickets, IB is not obliged to look after you if you miss your long-haul flight – although if you fly IB from London, it is very unlikely they would abandon you if the delay was down to them.
  • A flight from London to Madrid, return, costs 13,000 Avios and £35 in Economy (offpeak) – but that is hardly making a great dent in your £533 taxes and charges saving (£666 – £133)
  • Iberia reward availability is not great as they fly far fewer seats to New York than British Airways

And to prove the sale discount works …..

I showed a New York business class return example above, which priced at 68,000 Avios + £133 of taxes:

I then changed the address on my Iberia account to Spain and did the same search:

As you can see, the price dropped to 34,000 Avios + €147. This is a crazy price for a business class trip to New York.

I should add that it took a lot of fiddling around to get Iberia to quote the correct price. I ended up setting the site to Spanish (Spanish domicile and language) but I don’t know if that is what finally triggered it.

Please note ….

When you switch your country of address to Spain, you need to select a province. Once you’ve done so, you need to select a post code.

If you set province to Madrid, the post code you make up must be a five digit number starting 28.

How do you move Avios to Iberia Plus?

To get your Avios from British Airways Executive Club to Iberia Plus, you need to use ‘Combine My Avios’.

This is a bug-ridden feature. The best way to get it working properly is to use as a conduit.

This HfP article explains how ‘Combine My Avios’ works.

You’re stuffed if you don’t already have an Iberia Plus account

To get these deals, you must book on the Iberia website and use Iberia Avios.

Unfortunately, you need to open it 90 days before you want to book.

For absolute clarity – if you do not already have an Iberia Plus account open, you cannot take part in the ‘50% off’ Avios sale.

This is because you cannot transfer British Airways Executive Club Avios or points into Iberia Plus Avios if the Iberia account is under 90 days old. (And this little wheeze is probably why.)

Your Iberia account also needs to have had an Avios earning transaction put through it.  

You cannot move your BA Avios into an Iberia account, even if it is 90 days old, if the Iberia account has never had any activity on it

You need to credit a flight segment or a car hire or a hotel stay to class it as ‘active’ and thus qualifying to receive incoming Avios transfers.  If you cannot put a flight or hotel stay through it, you could transfer some existing hotel points or American Express Membership Rewards points.


This is, clearly, a great deal. It is also, clearly, a bit of a punt. It is actually two punts:

you need to be certain that your final destination will let you in when you come to fly, and

you need to be certain that Spain will not be on the UK quarantine list, since the transit required in Madrid would be enought to trigger it even if you never leave the airport

Given that Iberia Avios redemptions are refundable, of course, the risk is arguably manageable. What I don’t know is it Iberia is letting you cancel Avios flights online or, if not, how easy it is to reach their call centre.

Remember that you must book by 30th August.

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (April 2024)

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 with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

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

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £20,000 Read our full review

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

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £15,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points and a huge range of valuable 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 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers 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

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.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit 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.

Comments (103)

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

  • TomJ says:

    Just booked 2 pax Madrid to Lima for 85k + £363 in biz – great result! Thanks Rob!

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

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