Membership Rewards used to transfer 1,000:1,000 to British Airways Avios, but the rate was cut to 250:200 on October 1, 2015.
Through the end of the year, though, you can temporarily get the old 1:1 rate through a two-step process.
- Transfer Membership Rewards 1:1 to Iberia Avios during the current 25% transfer bonus.
- Transfer Iberia Avios 1:1 to British Airways Avios.
- Your Iberia account must be at least 90 days old to transfer its points freely to British Airways.
- You British Airways account must had at least 1 Avios in it at some point. (You could always make a Membership Rewards or Ultimate Rewards to Avios transfer to get those points.)
- Your name, email address, and date of birth must match exactly between British Airways and Iberia accounts.
- British Airways is eliminating its 4,500 Avios awards within/to/from the United States starting February 2, 2016.
Great Uses of Iberia or British Airways Avios
Generally both are good for short, direct, economy awards on partners without fuel surcharges. Here is my rundown of British Airways Avios.
Iberia Avios–if you just want to transfer there and not on to British Airways–are additionally very good for Iberia Business Class. For eight months of each year (the off peak window):
- New York or Boston to Madrid is 34,000 Iberia Avios each way in Business Class.
- Los Angeles, Chicago, and Miami to Madrid is 42,500 Iberia Avios each way in Business Class.
Connections will increase the price.
There is a 25% Membership Rewards to Iberia Avios transfer bonus that runs through December 31, 2015. It brings the transfer ratio to 250:250.
If your Iberia account has been open for three months, you can then transfer the points 1:1 to British Airways Avios.
(By the way, if you don’t have an Iberia account, open one now to start the 90 day clock for future times when you want to transfer between accounts.)
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Earn 50,000 bonus points (worth $800 in American Airlines flights) after spending $3,000 in the first three months on the Citi Prestige® Card. Plus get a $250 Air Travel Credit each calendar year, free airport lounge access worldwide, and your fourth night free on hotel stays. Why I got the card.