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Iberia has launched its latest Avios sale and, for US flyers, the deal on offer is noticeably better than the deal British Airways has running in parallel – if you’re short of Avios this may be a good opportunity to top up.
Latest Iberia Plus Avios Sale
- Promotion is valid through 4 March 2019
- Payment will be taken in Euros
- You can buy a maximum 200,000 Avios per calendar year (excluding bonuses)*
*Iberia has raised the limits for this promotion so it’s now in line with the limit British Airways sets.
The promotion is simple:
- Buy between 2,000 and 200,000 Avios and get a 50% bonus
Despite the fact that you’ll earn a 50% bonus just by purchasing 2,000 Avios, the cost/Avios still decreases the more Avios you buy.
Buying just 2,000 Avios will see you net 3,000 Avios (after the bonus) at a cost of €54:
This works out to a price of ~€0.018/$0.020 per Avios
Buying the maximum permissible 200,000 Avios will see you net 300,000 Avios (after the bonus) at a cost of €3,601:
This works out to a price of ~€0.012/$0.014 per Avios
In both cases you earn 50% bonus Avios but, because of the pricing structure, buying more Avios gets you a better deal.
Why Iberia Plus?
I’ve mentioned Iberia Plus before as I believe it’s a loyalty program of which everyone who collects Avios should be a member and there are 3 primary reasons for this:
- Lower fees added to reward flights booked using Iberia Plus Avios (compared to British Airways)
- Fewer Avios needed (compared to British Airways Executive Club) on some long haul routes
- Different peak and off-peak seasons to British Airways Executive Club
What all this means is that Avios in an Iberia Plus account can often be put to better use than a similar number of Avios in a British Airways Executive Club account.
Is This Points Sale A Good Deal?
€0.012 per Avios is approximately equivalent to $0.014 and that’s cheaper than the Avios sale that British Airways is currently running. While the BA sale is great if you’re based in the UK the $0.018/Avios that BA is charging US-based flyers is extortionate compared to Iberia’s current deal.
Iberia Avios bookings attract lower surcharges than British Airways Avios redemptions (one of the reasons I like Iberia Plus) so that makes them more attractive than BA’s version of the currency.
During off-peak season you can get Iberia Plus USA – Europe Business Class redemptions from 85,000 Avios + taxes of ~$229….
…and using Avios bought in this sale that can be a very good deal.
At $0.014/Avios this redemption would cost approximately $1,419…and that’s fantastic value.
You”re unlikely to find many non-stop cash fares on full-service carriers that can compete with that price.
The further you fly the less good the deal becomes as the number of Avios required for the redemption increases disproportionately to the cash price you’d have to pay for the same flights….but there are still other good deals to be had if you put in a bit of time to find them.
On short-haul routes is where Avios can really shine – especially at $0.014 each and especially on traditionally expensive routes.
Very short routes (600 miles each way or under) cost 15,000 Avios roundtrip and, at $0.014/Avios that comes to a little under $210…and that’s a lot less than you’ll often have to pay for routes like Dallas – Austin or New York – Washington D.C.
As usual it’s all about the math.
If you fly a lot of short-haul flights that are often highly priced then buying Avios at $0.014 each can be a very good deal.
If you can find Business Class award availability across the Atlantic (preferably in off-peak season) then buying miles in this promotion can be a fantastic deal.
Work out on which routes you’re likely to use Avios, check out how many Avios you’ll need and then check how easy it is to find award space. If things line up then it’s probably safe to buy in this promotion and you’re probably getting a very good deal….but don’t buy Avios without a solid plan and without checking award availability first.