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New Avios flight options as Iberia and Finnair add long-haul routes

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Both Iberia and Finnair have made new long-haul route announcements in the last 24 hours.

All of these flights will be bookable with Avios and should offer low levels of taxes and charges. Whilst you can’t use a British Airways American Express companion voucher when redeeming Avios on Finnair or Iberia, it offers good value for solo travellers or those who want to save a voucher for another trip.

The downside, of course, is the requirement to travel via Madrid or Helsinki.

New Iberia routes to United States

New Iberia long-haul routes to the US

Iberia is launching a new route from Madrid to Dallas in April.

There will be four weekly return flights. The rationale for the route is to feed into American Airlines which has a hub in Dallas.

Washington DC is (finally) launching too.

Iberia had this route lined up to launch in April 2020 but, you know …. There will be four flights per week.

US East Coast Avios redemptions are exceptional value with Iberia, with Madrid to Washington (plus New York, Boston etc) costing just 68,000 Avios return in Business Class off-peak. Taxes and charges are around £140. Peak dates require 100,000 Avios but this is still less than a British Airways service, to say nothing of the £400 taxes saving.

San Francisco is returning from April with three flights per week from Madrid.

Where is Iberia currently flying in North America?

If you are looking to travel before the end of March, Iberia is currently operating the following routes:

  • New York (10 flights per week)
  • Miami (10 flights per week)
  • Chicago (5 flights per week)
  • Boston (3 flights per week)
  • Los Angeles (3 flights per week)
  • San Juan, Puerto Rico (4 flights per week)

Our guide to spending Avios on Iberia is here.

Finnair business class with Avios

New Finnair long-haul routes to Asia

Finnair has its own new route plans for Summer 2022.

It is finally launching services to Busan in South Korea, a new route which was planned pre-covid and then put on hold.

It will also launch flights to Tokyo Haneda and Sapporo.

Finnair has a big presence in Japan – it is the biggest overseas market for the airline – and these two routes will take the number of airports served to six :

  • Tokyo Narita (daily)
  • Tokyo Haneda (daily)
  • Osaka (daily, 2x daily from June)
  • Nagoya (daily)
  • Fukuoka (3 per week)
  • Sapporo (2 per week)

Daily services to Hong Kong, Seoul, Singapore and Bangkok, and twice-weekly services to Shanghai, will also operate.

Finnair is picking up the slack after BA dropped Helsinki

With Helsinki now purged from the British Airways network, Finnair is stepping up capacity.

There will be four daily flights between Heathrow and Helsinki. For cargo reasons, one will use an A350 and another will use an A330, offering flat beds in business class. The other two flights will use standard short-haul aircraft and are best avoided!

Finnair has recently cut the taxes and charges on redemption flights sharply as we showed in this article. Book a redemption in Business Class from Helsinki to Seoul on Avios, for example, and you only pay £30 in taxes and charges! The Japan routes are not as cheap, unfortunately, as Finnair’s hands are tied by the terms of its joint venture agreement with JAL. The latest Finnair business class seat on the A350 is pictured above.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (November 2021)

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

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

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending ….. Read our full review

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 credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review

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

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 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 10,500 Avios:

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard 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

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 (53)

  • Iain miller says:

    I had book Madrid to San Juan on Iberia’s half price avios deal last year. Would have 68k plus only £280 for two.

    Postponed twice then cancelled.
    I was gutted!

  • BJ says:

    Why do BA seem to be going backwards while others go forward? KUL, ICN and KIX definately gone. Looks like BKK gone now too. Three companion vouchers, no BA flights and a travel-averse partner have now become a very frustrating fame board for me. I wish Virgin would take up BKK and HKT. In absence of BA typical advertised business class fares on Thai and EVA from LHR-BKK appear to have almost doubled.

    • Luio says:

      What do you mean gone? Doyle said KUL, ICN & KIX were suspensions – not permanent and wants to reinstate ASAP.

      • Rob says:

        These are all relatively new routes – BA did without them for a long time and can clearly do without them again, especially KUL with MH serves happily. BA could get a codeshare on that and be done.

        • Paul says:

          30 years ago BA served Seoul (SEL) TPE MNL CGK SIN HKG BKK KUL KIX FUK NGO NRT. So not new routes but they are routes that BA have never shown a (Except HKG NRT and SIN) long term commitment. KUL in particular has been dropped at least 3 times in the intervening period. SEL twice!

    • Richie says:

      They got rid of B747 aircraft and B772 aircraft have started to be retired. It’s a simple aircraft shortgage.

      • BJ says:

        Probably plenty of good aircraft going very cheap at the moment plus the option to lease, probably also a relatively good deal compared to pre-covid. So, while I agree it is likely a factor, I don’t think it is the whole story.

        • Richie says:

          What’s the rest of the story?

          • BJ says:

            Suggested by people that know better than me that really changes were in the pipeline pre-covid.

          • Sam G says:

            BKK is seasonal and was planned to be before COVID – the aircraft can operate over the atlantic twice in the same time far more profitably over the summer.

            From what I heard as well KUL has always been borderline despite loading well, the yield was never great and I believe Seoul & Japan aren’t great performer load/yield wise either.

            In the days of a smaller longhaul fleet (no 747, less 777, less A380) it’s to be expected that BA will cut long thin single daily routes first and stick to it’s bread and butter transatlantic routes. Especially going East they have Finnair & Qatar to handle the traffic instead

  • David S says:

    Can someone clarify BKK gone. I’m booked to go in Jan

    • BJ says:

      It’s gone seasonal already and so far nothing loaded for October 22 last time I checked. Your flight in January is hopefully fine.

  • Josh says:

    Anyone struggling to search for availability on Iberia?

    keep getting this error:

    Sorry, we can’t show you the flights
    For reasons beyond the control of Iberia, we can’t show you the flights available at this time

  • Paul says:

    Really wish something could be done to add Finnair flights operated by Nordic to be able to be used with Avios. Quite alot of the regional and short haul European flights including Dublin and Manchester are operated most of the time by them.

  • MiddleEngland says:

    Which Finnair flights are going to be operated by 350 or 330? They all seem to be still showing 319/320/321.

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