Chase Iberia Visa Signature 2020 Overview – Forbes Advisor
In 2010 Iberia merged with British Airways and the newly merged company formed the IAG (International Airlines Group). In 2015, IAG bought the Irish airline Aer Lingus.
Despite the purchase and renaming, each and every company continues to operate under its original brand and use its own loyalty program. Each with its own highlights and of course its quirks. Together, these three airlines use a mileage currency called Avios, which can be carried over from one IAG loyalty program to the next. Understanding each program is important if you are to maximize your Avios redemptions. For now, however, we’re focusing on Iberia’s reward tables and sweet spots.
The Iberia card offers a great welcome bonus and while it is one of the highest available, it also comes with a huge spending requirement.
The spending requirements structure is broken down into a few different levels and can be reached after completing the following steps:
- Earn 50,000 Bonus Avios after spending $ 3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening your account. Earn an additional 50,000 Bonus Avios after spending a total of $ 20,000 on purchases in your first year of account opening.
- Earn an Aer Lingus Companion Pass after spending $ 30,000 in total in one calendar year.
The Aer Lingus card also offers bonus Avios when you spend in certain categories, including 3 Avios per dollar spent on purchases at Aer Lingus and its partners Iberia and British Airways. You earn 2 Avios for every dollar spent on hotels when you book directly with the hotel. This does not apply to bookings made through third party websites such as Expedia or Orbitz. After all, you’ll earn 1 Avios for every dollar spent on all other purchases with no limit on the number of Avios you can earn.
The Iberia website may contain errors. For example, while I was actively searching for award flights for this review, I got launched from the website by accident and had to log in again and start my search again. If you are patient and willing to overcome the quirks, the rewards can be well worth the headache.
If you want to transfer miles from partner British Airways to Iberia, you must ensure that your Iberia account is at least 90 days old and that you have activities, be it flights or just miles from programs such as Chase Ultimate Rewards, to your account. You should also make sure your names match exactly, meaning you don’t have an account with William and the others with Bill. Make sure the email addresses match too.
Iberia uses a different award table for each partner and while these are not the same, they are similar. The Iberia award table is based on distance. This means that Iberia does not allocate mileage costs according to specific regions of the world, as in zone-based programs, but calculates them according to the number of miles flown. Distance-based award tables tend to offer better redemption options for a wider range of short-haul flights and more flexibility with routes, but are typically not as good for longer flights.
One of the great uses of Iberia Avios is the ability to use it on short haul flights. Flights under 650 miles only cost 4,500 Avios in the low season and 5,000 Avios in the high season.
A flight from Madrid, Spain to Marseille, France costs just 4,500 Avios in Economy or 9,000 Avios in Business Class.
Another reason for using Iberia Avios is that, unlike its partner British Airways, it is an airline that does not pass on any fuel fees imposed by the carrier. On flights to Europe, this can result in huge savings. Using Avios to book and fly on British Airways can cost hundreds and even over a thousand dollars in taxes and surcharges in addition to your miles. At Iberia, the cost is typically anywhere from $ 80 to $ 100.
A one-way flight from Chicago (ORD) to Madrid (MAD) costs just 17,000 Iberia Avios in Economy, 25,500 in Premium Economy and 34,000 in Business Class. Fees are approximately $ 80 regardless of service class.
Iberia sales come a few times a year and you can book Economy for just 12,500 Avios and Business Class for 25,500 Avios. This is one of the lowest deals on the market for flights to Europe
Avios are also useful for families as the airline regularly releases more award seats than other airlines. On this search from Chicago to Madrid, the flight has nine seats in Premium Economy. Business Class regularly opens up four seats at the same time.
Forbes Advisor uses data collected by several government agencies to determine basic income and spending in various categories for consumer credit cards. The 70th percentile of wage earning households brings in $ 100,172 annually and can debit credit cards with $ 26,410 annually.
With the Chase Iberia credit card you will receive:
- 3 Avios per dollar for Iberia, Aer Lingus and British Airways
- 2 Avios per dollar that are spent on hotels when booking directly at the hotel
- 1 Avios per dollar for all other purchases
Forbes Advisor estimates that the average consumer will spend $ 1,755 per year on flights. For someone flying with Iberia or one of its sister companies and using the Iberia card to pay for those flights, they would earn a total of 5,265 Avios. Additionally, Forbes estimates that a household will spend an additional $ 2,820 each year on other hotel purchases. This means that Iberia card members could potentially accumulate 5,640 Avios per year from these categories.
Other expenses that can reasonably be deducted from a credit card add an additional $ 16,101 to annual expenses and would bring in 16,101 Avios for a total of 26,826 Avios earned each year on top of the first year welcome bonus.