Update: These offers for the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express and the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express have expired. Learn more about the current offers here.
Via Don’t Call The Airline, Lufthansa first class awards are currently available to Munich from several cities in the US and Canada.
This is wonderful news for me, and anyone else who has been looking at traveling to Europe this summer using miles.
Why do we care?
- Lufthansa typically releases first class award space to partner airlines at most 15 days out, so if you need to plan further out than that you usually need to redeem Miles & More miles
- Lufthansa is drastically cutting the number of first class seats they have in their fleet, so there are fewer seats for which to redeem miles
- Lufthansa has amazing
- Award space to Europe this summer is pretty dismal in general at this point, so this space is that much sweeter
Which cities are in play?
I haven’t dug that deeply, but thus far it seems there is space for 2+ passengers on routes to/from Munich and the following cities:
- Washington DC
- Vancouver (yay West Coast!)
- Mexico City (relatively easy for West Coast peeps using Avios)
How do I find space?
These flights are displaying on United.com, so I would likely start there.
The space doesn’t seem to be phantom, as it’s also available on the ANA tool:
Which miles should I use?
There are three main options here, depending on which mileage currency you have (these are all one-way prices):
- Air Canada Aeroplan: 62,500 miles
- transfer from Membership Rewards or SPG
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer: 80,000 miles
- transfer from Citi ThankYou, Membership Rewards, Ultimate Rewards, or SPG
- United MileagePlus: 110,000 miles
- transfer from Ultimate Rewards
As a reminder, these are the best cards for earning flexible points:
|Flexible Currency||Earn Miles With|
|American Express Membership Rewards||Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express|
American Express EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card
|Starwood Preferred Guest||Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express|
Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Card from American Express
|Chase Ultimate Rewards||Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card|
Ink Plus® Business Credit Card
|Citi ThankYou||Citi Prestige® Card|
Citi Premier℠ Card
With Aeroplan and KrisFlyer, you will pay fuel surcharges. These aren’t cheap for Lufthansa flights, so you’ll want to keep that in mind. The mileage cost with United is outrageous, but you’ll only pay minor taxes and fees.
With any of these programs, you can add your connecting flights for no additional miles. So I could fly San Diego > Chicago > Munich > Rome for 62,500 Aeroplan miles.
If you do book this through Aeroplan, and don’t need a stopover, I’d recommend booking as two one-ways, versus a round-trip. This will save you about $200 in fees.
Will my plane have new First or old First?
Yeah, I’m not Ben. I have lots of things memorized, but aircraft configurations for a certain German airline ain’t one of them.
However, the answer is “most likely new,” given that Munich seems to have mostly refurbished planes. Lufthansa also has a handy tracker that will tell you if your flight is scheduled to operate with the new product.
No one loves Lufthansa first class as much as Ben, and no matter how much I heckle him it really is a fun experience. Availability isn’t wide open, but there are plenty of seats out there, which is a big deal over the peak summer travel season.
If you’re thinking of booking travel to Europe this summer, I would absolutely see if you can make these flights work. I don’t expect this to last long.