In this post, I wanted to review the Iberia Visa Signature® Card, which is one of Chase‘s lesser-known travel rewards credit cards. This card has only been in the US market for a few years. Since it’s a card that many people haven’t had before, I do think it should at least be on your radar, assuming you’re eligible, in particular with the excellent welcome bonus that’s available now.
Let’s talk about everything you need to know about this card.
Iberia Credit Card Basics For September 2021
The cards have a lot of overlapping benefits, with a key difference being that each card offers perks on the respective airline. Furthermore, while all three cards earn Avios, they each earn points in different “flavors” of the Avios currency.
Earn 100,000 Iberia Avios
The Iberia Visa Card offers a welcome bonus of 100,000 Iberia Avios. You’ll earn that bonus after you spend $5,000 within the first three months of account opening. This is an exceptional bonus, and the lowest spending requirement we’ve seen on this card for a bonus so big.
Personally, I value Avios at ~1.3 cents each, so to me 100,000 Avios are worth ~$1,300.
Iberia Card $95 Annual Fee
The Iberia Visa Card has a $95 annual fee. This is not waived for the first year, and there’s no additional fee to add authorized users.
The welcome bonus on the Iberia Visa Card isn’t available to those who currently have the card, or those who have received a new cardmember bonus on the card in the past 24 months. However, you are eligible for this card if you’ve had one of the other cards earning Avios (including the British Airways or Aer Lingus cards), so this is a great complement.
All Chase cards are also subjected to the 5/24 rule, whereby you won’t be approved if you’ve opened five or more new card accounts in the past 24 months. It’s also worth being aware of Chase’s other general policies on card approvals.
Earning Avios With The Iberia Credit Card
The Iberia Visa Card has no foreign transaction fees and offers contactless payment, but does the rewards structure actually warrant putting spending on the card? Generally, I’d say no, but it does depend, as I’ll get into below.
5x Avios Per Dollar Spent On Flights
If you’re a new cardmember, you’ll earn 5x Avios per dollar spent on purchases with Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia, and LEVEL for the first 12 months from account opening. After that, you’ll earn 3x Avios. This is an excellent return on that spending, but after the first year there are other great credit cards for airfare purchases that I’d consider.
3x Avios Per Dollar Spent On Hotels
If you’re a new cardmember, you’ll earn 3x Avios per dollar spent on hotel accommodations for the first 12 months. After that, you’ll earn 2x Avios. This is quite good, but after the first year there are better credit cards for hotel purchases.
1x Avios Per Dollar Spent On Other Purchases
For everyday spending the Iberia Card offers 1x Avios per dollar spent, which isn’t much to get excited about, as there are better credit cards for everyday spending. The exception is if you’re trying to reach $30,000 of spending, for reasons I’ll get into below.
No Foreign Transaction Fees
The Iberia Card has no foreign transaction fees, so it’s potentially a great card to use for purchases abroad.
The Iberia Card features contactless pay technology. This means you can pay using your card without even swiping it whenever you see the contactless pay symbol (in the age of coronavirus, this is an especially valuable feature).
Iberia Credit Card Purchase Protection
The Iberia Visa Card offers some solid purchase protection, as do many Visa Signature products. As always, make sure you check your cardmember agreement for all of the details, since there are terms & conditions.
What should you expect?
Secondary Car Rental Coverage
The Iberia Card offers auto rental collision damage waiver coverage. Decline the rental company’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental cost to your card.
Coverage is provided for theft and collision damage for most cars in the United States and abroad. Do note that in the US the coverage is secondary to your personal insurance, though.
Purchase & Extended Warranty Protection
The Iberia Card offers some useful protection:
- Purchase protection on new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft, up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account
- Extended warranty protection, extending US manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of three years or less
Baggage Delay & Lost Luggage Reimbursement
The Iberia Card offers baggage protection:
- Baggage delay insurance reimburses you up to $100 per day for three days for essential purchases when your bag is delayed by over six hours
- Lost luggage reimbursement reimburses you for up to $3,000 per passenger when you or your immediate family members’ checked or carry-on bags are damaged or lost by an airline
Iberia Credit Card Benefits
In addition to the excellent welcome bonus, the main reason I would consider the Iberia Visa Card is because of the great perks that it offers. There are two main perks — one you get just for having the card, and the other you get by spending $30,000 on the card.
Here’s how those benefits work.
10% Discount On Iberia Flights
One of the best benefits of the Iberia Card is that it offers a 10% discount on Iberia flights. To take advantage of this, just book through iberia.com/chase10, and use your card to pay.
As far as the terms of this offer go:
- Travel can commence from any Iberia destination
- Discount is valid on the flight fare only, and not on taxes and fees
- Valid for travel on Iberia only, and not for travel on partner airlines
- The discount doesn’t apply to excess baggage fees, seat assignment fees, purchasing Avios, etc.
- Discount applies for up to nine passengers traveling on the same reservations
If you fly Iberia Airways with any frequency, this could cover the annual fee over and over.
Iberia $1,000 Flight Discount Voucher
There’s one major incentive to spend money on this card — the Iberia Card offers a $1,000 flight discount voucher when you spend $30,000 on the card in a calendar year.
How does this discount voucher work?
- You earn the discount voucher based on spending $30,000 in a calendar year (eligible spending must post to the billing cycle before December 31)
- You will receive the discount code by email within four to six weeks of the billing cycle where you complete eligible spending
- The discount voucher can be applied for a discount of $1,000 when purchasing two tickets for the same flight in the same class of service
- Cardmembers can only earn one voucher per calendar year
- You must redeem the discount at iberia.com/chase10
- Flights must be taken within 12 months of when the voucher was issued
- The primary cardmember must be one of the travelers, so the discount voucher is not transferable or extendable
If you fly Iberia with any frequency, this could absolutely be worth it:
- A $1,000 discount voucher on $30,000 of spending is the equivalent of 3.3% back, not even factoring in the minimum of one Avios per dollar spent that you earn, so this is potentially an exceptional return
- It’s especially worthwhile in the first year, when you’ll already spend $5,000 to complete the minimum spending requirement
How To Redeem Iberia Avios
While a lot of people might be familiar with the British Airways Executive Club program, not as many people are probably familiar with the Iberia Plus program. What are the best uses of Iberia Plus Avios?
Transfer Iberia Avios To British Airways Avios
While there are some good uses of Iberia Avios, you can also transfer Avios between British Airways and Iberia, assuming you’ve had both accounts open for at least 90 days, and the accounts have some activity.
In other words, all the Avios you earn with this credit card could potentially be transferred to British Airways, which opens up a lot of great redemption opportunities.
How Should You Redeem Iberia Plus Avios?
Aside from the opportunities available through British Airways Executive Club, there are also some benefits to booking directly through Iberia Plus. The most significant is the ability to redeem on Iberia, as carrier imposed surcharges are significantly lower through Iberia Plus than through British Airways Executive Club.
Is The Iberia Credit Card Worth It?
The Iberia Visa Card has a great welcome bonus, so this is a card that many people should consider.
Personally, this isn’t a card I would use for everyday spending, since you can earn Iberia Plus Avios at a better rate with other American Express or Chase cards.
That being said, there’s potentially value to be had beyond the incredible welcome bonus:
- If you fly Iberia with any frequency, then the 10% discount should cover the annual fee over and over
- If you fly Iberia frequently then it’s almost certainly worth trying to spend $30,000 on the card per year, given the $1,000 Iberia discount voucher; that alone is the equivalent of 3.3% back, not factoring in the Avios you earn
Showdown: British Airways Visa Vs. Iberia Visa
- You are eligible for both of these cards, so you can pick up one if you’ve had the other (or just get them both if you’ve had neither)
- They have the same annual fees and spending bonus categories
- You can transfer Avios between British Airways and Iberia, so for all practical purposes the points currencies are the same
- The Iberia Card offers a 10% discount on Iberia flights, while the British Airways Card offers a 10% discount on British Airways flights
- The Iberia Card offers a $1,000 flight discount voucher after spending $30,000, while the British Airways Card offers a Travel Together Ticket after spending $30,000
- The British Airways Card offers an award surcharge rebate, which the Iberia Card doesn’t, though in fairness Iberia has significantly lower surcharges to begin with
The Iberia Credit Card may not have been on your radar, but it probably should be. The card has a phenomenal welcome bonus, for small and big spenders alike. You’re eligible for the Iberia Card even if you’ve had the British Airways Card before.
On top of that, the card can be worth holding onto long term if you fly Iberia with any frequency — the 10% discount on Iberia tickets is an awesome perk, and it can be worth spending $30,000 on the card per year to receive a $1,000 Iberia flight discount voucher.
While there are lots of great uses of Iberia Plus Avios, when it comes to earning them I’d personally prefer to do so through Amex or Chase, given the greater flexibility that offers. That assumes you’re not spending towards the $30,000 requirement to earn the flight discount voucher.