Warning: Don’t Transfer Iberia Avios Into Inactive Executive Club Account

The drama of the 90,000 Avios promotion continues…

Like many other people, I was thrilled to hear the news earlier this week that the 90,000 Iberia Plus Avios from the recent promotion can actually be transferred to British Airways Executive Club accounts. I had understood this was possible when the promotion started (as Iberia Plus had confirmed it!) but Iberia then appeared to renege on this option, and then changed their minds again.

I’m not in the market for long-haul Iberia operated premium redemptions, so I’m keen to get those 90,000 Avios into my very active Executive Club account where I can redeem them for one-way, short-haul flights which is where I get the most value. My Iberia Plus account was only opened when the promotion started, so I need to wait until the Iberia Plus account has been opened for three months before I can combine, so I have a couple of months to go.

I’m happy to wait given the uncertainty of this promotion.

Some of you may have the ability to transfer/combine them right now.

However, before you do this, a BIG warning.

Inactive Executive Club Accounts

A Travel Update writer is reporting that he transferred his 90,000 Iberia Plus Avios to his Executive Club account. He then logged into their Executive Club account to discover the 90,000 Avios had expired just a day after entering the account.

Why did this happen?

His Executive Club had been inactive for several years. If you do not earn, spend, purchase or share at least one Avios every 36 months, any Avios in the account will be expire.

Transferring Avios from an Iberia Plus account to an Executive Club, does not appear to count as earning or sharing, so will not reactivate your British Airways Executive Club account. Therefore any Avios in your account will expire and be removed daily.

If you have an inactive account, i.e. no activity in the past 36 months, please record some activity before transferring any Avios into your account. I would recommend something that credits/registers quickly, such as purchasing a tiny amount of Avios.

Ensure this activity is recorded in your account before transferring any Avios.

Bottom line

I must admit reading the unfortunate situation from Travel Update sent a chill down my spine, and I’m glad my Iberia Plus account is so new that I have to wait to transfer because I want to be completely sure that the transfer will work before doing it. My Executive Club account is very active, but if your account isn’t, it’s critical that you don’t transfer into an inactive account.

Even if you have to spend/’waste’ a small amount of money to show some activity (such as purchasing a bottle of wine through their e-store), it will be a sound investment if you want to house and use your Avios in Executive Club.

Has anyone actually transferred their Iberia Plus Avios to Executive Club yet?

Comments

  1. So James, still a green light for transferring to Exec Club assuming the account is completely active?

  2. Transferring credit card points doesn’t qualify as activity either, so I’d suggest removing that advice from the article.

  3. I have a great idea. Keep your information based on your flying experiences and stop blogging every possible Rip off. None of these promos end to well do they ?

    If promos go “viral” companies pull back

  4. I would absolutely NOT recommend transferring avios to an ACTIVE BAEC account. On Dec 1st, there will be a negative balance on your IP account (this has been confirmed by Iberia already), and it’s entirely possible that they take your “debt” from the BAEC account registered to the same name/address.
    So i would only recommend to make the transfer if both the IP and the BAEC account are of zero importance to you.

  5. Warning: don’t be a douchebag. If you get into a transaction with premeditated fraud maybe you do deserve to be beaten up.

  6. Cariverga where do you get that information from? As far as my IB account is concerned I couldn’t give two hoots about it. Iberia have dicked me around so badly on this deal they’ll never see me as a paying customer ever again, in fact once I’ve got my refund from them I’ll be closing my account.

  7. Love how we have a blogger with so called tons of experience utilizing miles and points for “free travel” transferring Avios into a BA account he hasn’t even used since 2015. He got what he deserved when trying to exploit a loop hole.

  8. @james
    I heard that there are some difficulties when you want to transfer your IB Avios to a BA account, where the BA account is part of a household account. Do you know something about this or can you tell me how to do it right? Thx

  9. @ Sammy – no because I don’t find there’s much value in the Iberia Plus program for me. Even though BAEC isn’t a great program I prefer it.

  10. Article 17 of the General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 allows an individual to request ‘to be forgotten’ by a company. If you transfer to Executive Club and then make request to Iberia they are under a EU regulatory duty to remove your details from their system within 1 month of the request. The request can be made by phone / email / letter. You can then re-apply for an Iberia plus account at a future date.

  11. Anyone who thinks they’re clever and pulling a fast one by transferring and then leaving their IB plus account idle with a negative balance once Iberia deduct miles not used through the program (as Iberia have repeatedly stated is their intent), are setting themselves up for a shock and possible audit when IAG eventually merge the FF programs.

    The miles wouldn’t worry me. The audit…

  12. Iberia never confirm in the beginning that transfer to Avios is allowed. Please show your evidence

  13. You can certainly request removal of your account and details under GDPR, but the act of requesting this will leave a red flag in their system. Do you really think they will want you back as a customer.

  14. I literally had email on 12 May 2018 telling me my Avios were going to expire in two months. Somehow my Avios were still there today but they have been transferred straight out to IB!! Thanks a lot!

    BTW any idea if transfers from SPG to BA would reset the clock?

  15. For BA Avios, any activity (earn/spend) will reset the 36-month clock. Credit card transfers do count.

    HOWEVER, transfer of Avios between BA/IB/Avios.com do NOT count as an activity.

  16. James (commenter) – There are obviously exceptions to that. Just like you can’t take out a mortgage then make your bank “forget”everything about you, Iberia can definitely record that you “owe” them 90,000 Avios.

    James (writer) – It’s pretty irresponsible to promote this without mentioning Iberia have stated anyone who does this will have their account go negative. As all Avios accounts are due to be merged into a single balance, that could therefore result in them being taken from your BA balance (and if you don’t have enough, therefore preventing you using Executive Club too).

  17. James you really do need to listen to what Callum is saying above. I presume you read HfP as you reference the site in the article. If you read all the comments too you will see that there has been much discussion as to what might happen once the various avios platforms are merged. You could be storing up a lot of trouble if you blithely move the Iberia promotional points. Your advice or perhaps lack thereof in this article strikes me as a bit cavalier. Secondly I’m not sure how people think GDPR allows them to walk away from a debt, which is what a negative points balance surely is?

  18. @ Evan, @ Callum – the negative balance of Iberia Avios transferred out has been mentioned countless times on this site before.

  19. The original reason I opened an IberiaPlus account a couple of years ago is that for many redemptions they offer *better* value than BAEC.
    New York is a good example, although (if you live in London) it does involve a connection.
    So I really don’t see the point of transferring these points from IB+ to BAEC.

    All it takes is a decision to take the 2018/9 holiday in Latin America, and do that planned Asia trip a year later.

  20. Obviously the Iberia program is hard to use, but there are some good redemptions available. I got one business class JFK-MAD-FRA in May, as well as two economy MAD-JFK flights in late May. Not bad for 89,400 miles total! And, I had to take these precise flights on those dates anyway. The bad news is that I have to fly economy with IB… (shudder) By the time I finally got the points, the business seats were gone on that particular flight, and my plans are not flexible. Still, I would say perhaps about $2000-2500 in value in return for the $300 spent on the promotion.

    @debit — it was a promotion and we participated in it by following the terms, then got the points. Not fraud at all. A perhaps ill-advised promotion on Iberia’s part, but at the same time, companies do this to win over new customers. My experience with Iberia was reasonably good, they gave me the points and there was no fuss. Actually for some reason they gave me 90,200 miles instead of 90k. Not sure why. I will definitely fly them again and may use their program in the future. In the long run they’ll make money from their business relationship with me.
    Their website has problems (I could not book any itineraries with BA flights online), and of course other one-world partner bookings have to be roundtrip, can’t be canceled, have to be booked on the phone…

    I would strongly advise against transferring out of IB program and having a negative balance – use the points as best as you can, you’re bound to get more for 90k miles than the $300 you spent on the promotion. If you got the points, be thankful and move on.

  21. I am trying to transfer my Iberia avios to BA since I want to fly from HKg to Nagoya and Iberia avios is 23,000 roundtrip while BA avios is just 20,000.

    I read James’ post saying that I must have activity in my BA account or else my iberia avios will expire within a day. My idea was to buy a small amount of miles for my BA account. However, BA says I cannot buy miles since I do not have a single mile currently in my BA account.

    Therefore, can I either:

    1) Transfer my iberia avios to the BA account (which will be instant) and then immediately redeem for tickets before they expire within one day?

    2) Get a friend to transfer a small amount of miles from his BA account into my BA account? Will that qualify as ‘activity’ in my BA account and therefore I can either purchase miles in the BA account or transfer miles from my Iberia account into the BA account?

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