It’s been a big week here at OMAAT already!
After posting earlier this week about not panicking if you could not access your Iberia Plus account that you opened to take advantage of the ‘promo of the year,’ then came the excellent news that the bonus Iberia Avios had begun posting, but only for those accounts opened before the promotion started.
I opened a new account, and could not access it for the last few days. Rather than contacting Iberia, as every person seemed to be given a different story and instructions, I planned to wait until the dust settled and official word came from Iberia as to what to do to unlock the account, rather than jumping through hoops that may not actually achieve anything.
As of today, there appears to be two officials steps to take if you have a new Iberia Plus account you cannot access.
1. Check Your Emails
Today I received the following email from Iberia Plus regarding the promotion, and my account:
Thank you for your interest in the Iberia Plus programme.
It is a standard requirement of our programme to check the registration details for your Iberia Plus account. To help us do this, please email a copy of the official identity document you used for registration to firstname.lastname@example.org. The subject line of the email must include your Iberia Plus number in order for us to process it and you must send it to us by 31 July (GMT+2). If the documentation is not received before this date, we will be unable to register you for the Iberia Plus programme and you will not have access to any of the associated benefits.
If you took part in our recent 9,000 extra Avios promotion for the purchase of tickets at Iberia.com, please attach a copy of any tickets purchased during the period and send it to us by 31 July 2018 in order to collect your Avios.
Once we have verified your identification and proof of ticket purchase we will award the Avios due—as per the campaign terms and conditions—to your account.
Kind regards and we hope to see you on board again soon.
The Iberia Plus team
To summarise (and read between the lines):
- Iberia is aware that fake accounts have been opened, by people taking advantage of the promotion (i.e. someone’s dog). To be honest, I didn’t even think to create an account for someone other than myself. In hindsight I could have created one for my parents, but I’m glad I didn’t as they would be confused if I asked them for their passports!
- To ensure each account is legitimate, I must provide a copy of my official identity document (i.e. my passport), together with a copy of any tickets purchased for the promotion by 31 July 2018.
- Avios will then be awarded if I do this, and have met the other terms and conditions of the promotion.
2. Unlock your account
As I wrote about a few days ago, I cannot currently access my account.
People who have contacted Iberia about this have been told to email in proof of identity, which you are already doing as part of Step 1. If you’re in no hurry to redeem your Avios by all means do this as it is the simpler option. However, I would much rather have access to my account sooner, rather than later.
And there is a work-around, thanks to some wonderful OMAAT readers earlier this week.
Firstly download the Iberia app. Then attempt to log in, using your Iberia Plus number and existing PIN.
It should return an error message.
So then click ‘Forgot Your PIN?’ and you will be taken to another screen to re-enter your Iberia Plus number and then the email registered with the account.
Check your emails, and you will be given a temporary PIN to use on the normal website.
Now I tried to enter these details on Iberia.com, but just got a spinning wheel for several minutes, followed by an error message.
However, entering my Iberia Plus number and recovery PIN into the Iberia app did grant me access to my account.
No Avios yet, but at least its unlocked.
And I was VERY pleased to see in ‘Your upcoming trips’ that all 10 of my bookings were still there with my Iberia number attached!
My position on this
I’m not surprised or annoyed that Iberia has decided to do this. I wasn’t panicking when I wrote the last post, I’m still not panicking now.
It’s perfectly fair that anyone who opened an account in the name of their dog, thereby breaching the terms and conditions, does not receive the bonus Avios. Those people won’t be able to get a refund on the tickets or the Avios.
That’s the price you pay for breaching the (very fair) terms of the offer.
Given there are likely to be tens of thousands of people sending in their documentation, I would recommend:
- Doing it as soon as possible and
- Being patient, as it will take them some time to review everyone’s and approve the Avios
I am far more frustrated about the sudden new rule that these bonus Avios cannot be combined into an Executive Club account. I maintain a very active Executive Club account through legitimate flying and credit card spend, and had planned to move the bonus Avios to British Airways as soon as possible.
I’m not very familiar with the Iberia Plus program, and expect award inventory to be very carefully controlled until December 1st as goodness knows how many people madly scramble to redeem their Avios before the December 1 deadline. Had I known this rule when the promotion began (they seem to have changed their minds recently) I probably would have sat this promotion out.
The rollercoaster of this promotion continues, and it’s been very fun to take part so far. This is what makes this hobby exciting.
It’s not surprising or unfair that Iberia has added some evidence requirements, as I imagine they suspect many people used fake names for accounts and bookings.
I’ll be sure to update you on any progress, as I know a lot of you are in the same position as me. If you have any additional data to report, please comment below.
What are you spending you 90,000 bonus Avios on?