How to Buy Iberia Avios for Just 1.43¢ Each, and Why You Might Want to Do So

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The mileage sales keep on coming! Iberia has just joined the growing collection of loyalty programs selling miles at best-ever pricing. Through August 31, 2020, loyalty members can buy Avios with a 50% bonus. If maximized, that translates into paying as little as 1.43¢ per mile.

A Note on Buying Points

With all of the current financial uncertainty, now is not the best time to be speculatively buying miles or planning travel. In fact, we never recommend buying miles speculatively. Programs can devalue at any time, long-term travel plans can change, and the last thing anybody needs is a substantial investment in a currency they can't use. 

That said, there are a few circumstances where buying points could represent terrific value, especially when they're on sale. If you only need a few more points to complete a redemption, buying points can be the simplest and fastest way. Moreover, if you're considering paying a cash rate for a premium class product or a particularly expensive route, it may be possible to save considerably by buying the points necessary for an award redemption instead. In either case, it's best to have a plan before making a purchase.

Key Terms

  • Promotion valid on Avios purchases made now through August 31, 2020
  • Buy at least 2,000 Avios and receive a 50% bonus
  • Iberia loyalty members may purchase a maximum of 200,000 Avios (300,000 with the bonus) per calendar year
  • Purchased Avios are non-refundable
  • Avios purchases can only be processed in Euros or U.S. Dollars

You'll get the best price per mile (1.43¢ each) when you buy 100,000 or more.

Always Buy Iberia Avios in Euros

If you're accessing Iberia's website from the United States, chances are the prices displayed are in U.S. dollars. Unfortunately, Iberia charges a steep premium for buying Avios in dollars. Compare these two charts:

Let's compare the prices for purchasing 200,000 Avios. On the chart priced in Euros, 200,000 Avios costs €3,601. At the current exchange rate of €1 = $1.1927, you might expect the price in dollars to be around $4,295. Yet, the dollar menu lists the price as $5,523—representing over a 28% premium for the same amount of Avios.

Thankfully, switching the currency is pretty straightforward. Simply scroll up to the header of the website, and change your region preference to España. You can leave your language preference as English if you prefer.

Keep in mind that Iberia's website can be a little quirky. You may have to navigate to another page first before you can switch regions.

When Does Buying Iberia Avios Make Sense?

Iberia's Avios program is full of value to be had as long as you know where to look. Some of our favorite uses for Avios are on off-peak Iberia flights in business class across the Atlantic, round trip short-haul flights on AA, and cheap connecting flights to the Caribbean. Let's take a look at some of these sweets spots to see if you can save money by buying Avios instead of paying a cash rate.

Chicago — Madrid in Iberia Business Class (off-peak)

  • Mileage Rate: 68,000 Avios + $189.61 round-trip
  • Typical Cash Price: $3,193 round-trip
  • Redemption Rate: 4.42 cents per mile
  • Cost to Purchase Necessary Miles (at 1.43¢ each): $972 round-trip

Los Angeles — Denver in American Airlines Economy

  • Mileage Rate: 17,000 Avios + $11.20 round-trip
  • Typical Cash Price: $425 round-trip
  • Redemption Rate: 2.43 cents per mile
  • Cost to Purchase Necessary Miles (at 1.43¢ each): $243 round-trip
*Note that even though it displays $20.20 for the taxes and fees, this is a known quirk of the Iberia website. You'll only be charged $11.20 when the charge posts on your statement.

Charlotte — Georgetown, The Bahamas in American Airlines Business Class

  • Mileage Rate: 34,000 Avios + $79.13 round-trip
  • Typical Cash Price: $843 round-trip
  • Redemption Rate: 2.25 cents per mile
  • Cost to Purchase Necessary Miles (at 1.43¢ each): $486 round-trip

Maximizing Your Purchase

Points.com processes purchases of Iberia Avios. Therefore, the purchase won't qualify for any applicable travel category bonus offered on some credit cards. With that in mind, we typically recommend making purchases like this with a great ‘everyday spending' credit card.

However, there is a caveat in this case. Since the transaction has to be made in Euros to achieve the best value, these Avios purchases will likely process as a foreign transaction. To make the most of an Avios purchase while avoiding a foreign transaction fee, some of the best credit cards to use include:

Other Ways to Earn Iberia Avios

One of the easiest (and cheapest) ways of topping off your balance is by transferring points from partners. For Iberia, it's particularly easy to accumulate Avios as it's a transfer partner with three of the five major currencies, including:

Iberia also partners with British Airways and Aer Lingus—the other two airlines under the AIG umbrella that also utilize the Avios currency. Thanks to this partnership, members of any of these programs can transfer Avios to the others freely, provided their account is old enough and the personal information matches.

This partnership can be particularly useful if there's a transfer bonus to British Airways or Aer Lingus. Members can take advantage of the transfer bonus, and then move the Avios to Iberia.

Finally, you can earn Iberia Avios through a co-branded credit card sign-up bonus. Chase partners with all three of the IAG partners, and—since Avios can be transferred interchangeably—you can utilize any of them to earn a respectable amount of Iberia Avios:

British Airways Visa Signature® Card
British Airways Visa Signature® Card
Annual Fee$95
Welcome Bonus Earn up to 100,000 bonus Avios. Earn 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. Plus earn an additional 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $20,000 on your purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Plus earn an additional 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $20,000 on your purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • 3 Avios per $1 spent on purchases with British Airways, Aer Lingus, Iberia, and LEVEL
  • 2 Avios per $1 spent on hotel accommodations, plus 1 Avios per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • 10% off British Airways flights starting in the US
  • Every calendar year you make $30,000 in purchases on your British Airways Visa card, you'll earn a Travel Together Ticket good for two years.
  • Pay no foreign transaction fees when you travel abroad.
  • Simply tap to pay with your contactless British Airways Visa Signature Card. Just look for the contactless symbol at checkout. It's fast, easy and secure!
  • 3X Avios per $1 spent on purchases with British Airways, Aer Lingus, Iberia, and LEVEL
  • 2X Avios per $1 spent on hotel accommodations
  • 1X Avios for every $1 spent on all other purchases

Bottom Line

Iberia's program has its quirks, for sure, but it also presents several distinctive sweet spots. While we never recommend buying miles speculatively, a 50% bonus provides numerous scenarios where it's possible to come out ahead. Just make sure you have a plan.

Are you buying Iberia Avios with a 50% bonus?

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Comments

  • I think Madrid, Spain, is the Europe gate, and I think Iberia is the main Spanish airline, and very well connected with the rest of Europe. My general experience with Iberia is good. Well, I think I trust Iberia will be there for many, many years, and I am planning to travel Europe many times during next years. So in my case I think buying avios at a good prices offer is a good option.

  • The promo is without doubts excellent.
    Anyway, it’s suggested to buy miles only if there is an immediate use of the miles.
    Everything could change in a short period of time.

  • El programa de pasajero frecuente de Iberia es el mejor programa para viajar hacia y dentro de Europa

  • From Madrid to Buenos Aires for 51,000 avios + $ 100 in business class. For a flight of almost 13 hours. I think it’s ok

  • Almost every loyalty program sell miles with discount..

  • Charlotte Burman says:

    Not a bad deal but I think I’ll give it a miss in the current environment.

  • Quite a good deal. Iberia Business Class redemptions are excellent value!

  • This is one of the Avios’ best prices that I have ever seen

  • Another sweet spot is GRU – MAD for only 42500 avios!

  • It’s a good promotion but I’m hesitant to spend cash to purchase miles at this time. Also, due to the pandemic, I am sitting on over $6,500 worth of travel vouchers due to cancelled flights. I’ll need to use them before I get around to cashing in miles again.

  • I loved when Iberia had the half-off award sale promotion last year so chicago to madrid was only 17,000 in business class off peak.

  • I don’t think that I will take advantage of this offer although there definitely are sweet spots. It is for transactions like these that my Barclaycard Arrival Plus is excellent. Getting two points per dollar is important but a lot of cards that give more than one point per dollar have foreign transaction fees.

  • I will be go to Buy UA miles, during Covid-19 i am not sure when i can go out have a trip. UA miles will be expire now, It’s much more safe. Also UA have no YQ Fee.

  • Juan Ignacio says:

    The deal is quite good, it is even better if you make the purchase with an Iberia cobranded credit card.

  • I will be never buy Iberia avios, their website is very hard to use. I am prefer buy AA points.

  • Antony Tsai says:

    I’ve received offers from United regarding buying miles with up to 100% bonus. Miles sales seem to be everywhere these days. Question is will the opportunity to use them be possible.

  • Steven William Van Meter says:

    This will be a good deal and I’m in the market because I have reservations at a hotel in Spain, but we are all waiting for the election to be over so we can fly again. I hope this deal is still around.

  • Does Iberia have any options from North America to India?

    • I don’t belive Iberia has service to India at the moment. You could use Iberia points to fly with British Airways, although there might be cheaper ways to go depending on what other miles you have.

  • Don’t forget to use 3rd party site to get extra bonuses!!

  • 1.43 ¢ per mile doesn’t seem cheap to me. It is the usual price.

  • This is also a great way to gain some rewards points that are in danger of expiring since we can’t go anywhere.

  • Personally this one is not quite there for me, but thanks as always for pointing them out.

  • Wasim Zahid says:

    Chicago — Madrid Business class is better with AA.
    45,000 miles off-peak + $11.20

  • Nice to see the miles sales continuing strong!

  • I don’t feel comfortable dealing with Iberia after hearing how they dealt with customer service for the last few months. Good idea about buying in Euro’s thou!

  • Does this apply to any passanger at any place in the world? for instance I am in South America.

  • Hi, how are you?
    Do you know if I can use my oneworld miles and convert them to Avios?
    This information would be very useful to me.

  • KanExplore says:

    One detail about Iberia Avios compared with BA. With BA if there’s a change in plans it is relatively easy and inexpensive to cancel and redeposit. With Iberia it is impossible on a partner redemption. Don’t use Iberia to book AA, for example, unless you are really sure.

  • Matias Gomez says:

    I have to consider this promotion, very interesting. Not only for the American market, It is interesting flying in Europe, using these Avios instead. A long disance or a Premium service instead of economy. I think could be interesting.
    Thank you for the information, always very helpful!

  • Maria Elena Fleckenstein says:

    It is possible to connect my Latam pass account with Iberia. Now that Latam has gone from Oneworld, is there any way that I can use my miles in oneworld airlines? I had only used Oneworld members, but now my Latam miles are almost useless. And with that, I can purchase extra Avios in this new account.

  • Leonardo Silva says:

    I’m not sure that buying miles is a good option now, before we know if the borders will be opened due to Covid 19, especially here where I live in Brazil.

  • Woah, I wouldn’t think about the Euros vs. USD difference. Tempted by the Caribbean flights but a few too many restrictions for me to feel ready to buy, especially when there seems to be a new mileage sale every day right now…

  • I’m not sure that buying miles is good option right now before we’ll know their inflation rate and I’m pretty sure they’ll inflate.

  • Not a huge fan of iberia. Had a flight booked with them during the pandemic and they wouldn’t refund even though I was barred from entry. Would only offer a voucher good til the end of the year which probably wont be used. Last thing I’d want to do is buy points from them.

    • Thank you so much for making my mind on Iberia. My experience with VS was so much better. Did you contact your credit card company to get the real money back?

  • Good promotion Avios 1,3 C each! Do you know if is Avios compatible with Oneworld? Can i migrate my AAdvantage miles to Avios

    Thanks

    • JT Genter says:

      No, you can’t move AAdvantage miles to Avios. You can only transfer Avios between participating airlines (Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia).

    • I am also interested as Gaston….Is it possible to migrate miles???

  • As always – buying through topcashback.com you can receive 2.5% cashback