Does anyone have experience (good or bad) with Iberia Airlines? Trying to use American miles to get to Geneva and Iberia seems to be best bet.
It's fine. If you are used to flying American, you won't have an issue with Iberia. Madrid airport is large. Leave yourselves time to make the connection there.
No personal experience with Iberia. But I did notice this about seat selection fees just over a month ago. If you do choose them, don't be surprised ....
Air Berlin is another option for your AA miles.
I've had a few unpleasant experiences with them.
Probably wouldn't use them again unless it was really necessary.
We flew with them in 2008, when everyone was saying they were bad. We had a perfectly fine trip, except for a schedule change (by 24 hrs!), but they were very accommodating in making the changes work for us. We were well notified in advance about the change. The flight fare on Iberia was about 1/2 what it was on other airlines, including AA (which was actually using Iberia metal).
Agree that the Madrid Airport is big & takes a while to get through, especially if you have to change terminals.
>> Trying to use American miles to get to Geneva and Iberia seems to be best bet. <<
Using AA miles from BOS, Iberia's nonstop to MAD is your best choice to Europe unless you want to pay BA's horrendous fuel surcharges or connect somewhere in the US.
Iberia is fine, and if you have enough miles for business class, IB's business class is a superior product compared to many.
You'd need to go from Terminal 4S (satellite) to T4 at MAD. Use the elevators/lifts rather than the escalators down to the train level to save time. If you do manage business class, the lounges at MAD are some of the best in the Oneworld system.
I would rather walk than fly Iberia again. We have tried them several times but this latest one was the topper (and our last, guaranteed). We flew Tenerife to Madrid to Chicago. Ours was the first Iberia flight of the day from TFN. Rescheduled from 0645 to 0700 with no particular reason given. Due to security mixup at the gate, other passengers were allowed on to the wrong flight. The mistake was discovered and both flights were held at the gate to allow them to board. This made us late getting into Madrid. The pilot did not attempt to make up the time in flight. We asked the flight attendants several times to help us by notifying the connecting flight. They were unwilling or unable to help. We ran from the arrival gate, took the train, got through passport control and ran the length of T4S to make our connecting flight. We made it to the gate for our Chicago flight with twenty minutes to spare. However, the gate personnel would not let us board, due to an obscure, arbitrary, useless but apparently irrevocable company policy. The plane was not full and the jetway was still connected. Strangely, one other couple from the same Tenerife flight arrived at the gate a few minutes after us and they were allowed to board. We enquired as to the reason. They were business class and so were allowed to ignore the company policy. Result: missed connection and an unwanted overnight stay in Madrid.
Next flight: Madrid to Chicago. Iberia flight. Left late and lost time in flight. Made our connecting flight difficult, since we had to clear customs and immigration in Chicago prior to boarding the flight to Detroit.
By the way, since we had an unwanted day in Madrid, we spent a good portion of it trying to get to the bottom of this strange rejected boarding policy. By our last count, we were lied to 5 times in a row by Iberia personnel, who obviously were willing to say anything to get us to leave their wicket. (Our method: ask, get told a story, check for verification, evaluate truthfulness. The lies we were told were not very well done and so were easy to puncture. It got beyond frustrating and eventually ended up kind of fun seeing how absolutely unhelpful and deceptive the Iberia personnel could be).
Oh, and by the way, they were late on the Chicago Madrid flight on the way out and we missed our connection that time too..... They also destroyed one of our pieces of luggage.....
In our opinion, Iberia appears to be allergic to schedules and good service. We wish them all the best in their inevitable bankruptcy :) How on earth two respected airlines like AA and BA would be willing to associate themselves with this flock of turkeys is one of life's impenetrable mysteries.
Wow!!! that's one hell of a story it seems what can go wrong did go wrong,not much consolation for the aggravation you went through (glad to see you kept your sense of humour) but as Iberia are an EU carrier they maybe liable to compensate each passenger in your party up to Euros 1200 (600 for outbound and 600 for inbound) under EU261/2004
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