It only takes two and a half hours to fly from Madrid to London, but on certain services, Iberia uses wide-bodied aircraft for this short-haul route.
On paper, it’s a great option, especially as travellers can use Avios points with Iberia to keep costs down. But The Points Guy UK decided to find out how good it really is, from top to bottom, by reviewing all three classes from front to back.
Three of the team boarded a Heathrow-bound A330-300 at Madrid and filmed their experiences.
Liam Spencer, pictured, tested out Iberia’s business class – and loved his ‘very spacious, private and comfy’ seat
Thumbs up: Liam said he liked Iberia’s ‘sleek and modern cabin’
Liam Spencer drew the longest straw for the video review trip, paying £210 for a seat in business class.
His trip got off to a great start at the airport. He said: ‘The Velazquez Premium Lounge is the best business-class lounge I’ve been to. It featured stunning tarmac views, a huge bar and great food.’
He liked his seat onboard the aircraft, too, describing it as ‘very spacious, private and comfy’. You could ‘adjust every part of it to your liking and turn it into a fully flat bed if you wanted to take a nap’.
Other plus points? The ‘sleek and modern cabin’ and the noise-cancelling headphones and 18.5in entertainment screen, which meant ‘you could really immerse yourself in a movie’.
The business-class food (pictured) was ‘tasty’, but the options were ‘fairly limited for a business-class offering’
The cabin crew, however, ‘weren’t particularly friendly’ and Liam said they didn’t make him feel welcome.
And while the food was ‘tasty’, the options were ‘fairly limited for a business-class offering’.
The final negative point was the inflight temperature – ‘the cabin felt extremely hot for portions of the flight’, Liam added.
While Liam stretched out in business class, Ben Smithson put premium economy through its paces, paying £93 and a further £20 to select a seat.
He liked the actual seat, describing it as ‘very comfortable’ with ‘plenty of recline and legroom’.
Ben Smithson, pictured, put premium economy through its paces
Ben liked his ‘delicious and colourful seafood meal’ (pictured)
HOW MUCH DID IT ALL COST?
For UK travellers, as part of the Oneworld alliance, Iberia is ‘a brilliant option for those wanting to use their Avios’, said The Points Guy UK.
The site said that for Madrid to London, using Avios through Iberia Plus, you’ll pay from 7,500 Avios for economy and 15,000 for business class.
Using British Airways Avios travellers could pay as little as 7,250 or 13,500 points with one-way taxes capped at £17.50 and £25 for economy and business respectively.
However, for the Madrid trip The Points Guy UK worked out after looking at prices for their dates of travel that it actually made sense to pay cash through the Iberia website – with no points spend – as the number of points needed for each ticket had a higher value than the cash amount for each ticket. So better to store them for another journey.
Liam paid £210 for his business class ticket.
Ben paid £113 for his premium economy ticket. (There is no points cost in premium economy because Iberia doesn’t officially sell premium economy on the Madrid-London route.)
Nicky paid £27 for his economy seat.
The food was a winner, too. He tucked into a ‘delicious and colourful pre-ordered seafood meal’.
The upside list also included the Wi-Fi and ‘good entertainment options’.
On the downside, as with Liam further forward in the plane, was the service. Ben said the crew ‘were rather unfriendly’.
At the back during the flight was Nicky Kelvin, Head of The Points Guy UK.
Nicky Kelvin said his seat was ‘incredibly comfortable’ and he was able to stretch out
Nicky bemoaned the non-existent menu options (bar water) in economy
He paid £27 for his economy seat, which he said was ‘incredibly comfortable with great recline’.
He continued: ‘A large aircraft meant there were plenty of available seats so I could stretch out and didn’t have anyone in the seat next to me (nor in front or behind). The fare was very cheap for the length of flight and aircraft I got to fly on.’
On the not-so-great side was the menu – ‘other than water, there was no food or drink available whatsoever, even to buy’ – and a lack of headphones. He said: ‘Whilst this was really a short-haul flight, having inflight entertainment screens without a way to enjoy them was a real tease.’
For more information on travel tips and tricks, sign up to The Points Guy UK. Click here to see the full-length Iberia footage.
It only takes two and a half hours to fly from Madrid to London, but on certain services, Iberia uses wide-bodied aircraft for this short-haul route. Pictured is the type of aircraft The Points Guy UK flew on – an Airbus A330