How to crush my dreams in five minutes flat…

Imagine you’re a 12 year old girl and someone says to you “hey, I have backstage passes to a Justin Bieber concert for you.” You go crazy, and then five minutes later they tell you “just kidding.”

Well, that’s kind of how my day went. Before I get started, keep in mind that Lufthansa is one of my favorite airlines in the world and I posted just a couple of days ago about how Lufthansa’s award space in first class is the worst it has ever been. You see, Lufthansa first class is like crack to me. It’s my high.

So imagine my excitement today when a blog reader (actually, two blog readers simultaneously) emailed me to point out that Lufthansa was releasing a ton of first class award space on the A380 between Frankfurt and Tokyo/Beijing in late December and early January, even for multiple people in first class.

My initial reaction? I nearly soiled myself. Once I could contain my excitement I headed over to to see if it was true. Yep, it was. See here (the blue rectangles on the right indicate there’s saver first class award space):

Then I went to to see if they showed the space too.

At this point I’m jumping up and down as if I won both showcases at The Price is Right. Heck, I even went to to see if the Park Hyatt Tokyo has any award space available over New Years.

And then, as quickly as my dreams were made, they were shattered by my good friend ANA, who didn’t show first class award space:

I justified it by telling myself that ANA was wrong and that Aeroplan and Continental were right, though I couldn’t convince myself of that for very long. I called Continental, Aeroplan, and even British Midland for good measure, and none could see the award space available.

When you try to make the booking on Continental’s website it brings you all the way to the booking page, and once you hit “purchase” it tells you there has been a change in availability. The same goes for Aeroplan. And unfortunately US Airways isn’t able to direct sell the space either.

So I’m sharing this so that others among you don’t have your hearts crushed by Lufthansa the way I did today. 😉

Filed Under: Awards
  1. The space is there when you use Miles and More (usually, the new F had been available only on request from the elites).

  2. Note I’ve been seeing lots of weirdness on Starnet this weekend. ExpertFlyer was showing 9I for Swiss/LX on BKK-ZRH, but nothing on Aeroplan, and nothing on ANA. Given LX is part of the Lufthansa group, there might be larger problems looming that they’re trying to fix.

  3. I tried last night in vein with US Air to book the flight, but no luck. I’ll keep trying to see if it magically appears. I’m already on the a380 in business to NRT so I can do the return HND-FRA on the 787. If I can somehow score first on the a380 over to NRT, it’d be worth the extra 20K miles to change my award reservation.

  4. Been there! My trip in Feb next year which i booked 2 weeks ago I saw the NRT-FRA flight open in F however CO couldnt book it despite the website showing it. Every time they put the seat in it came back in I class. Oh well ICN-FRA on OZ F it is. Sigh its such a hard life!

  5. Yeah, I’ve seen those seats in January. I was waiting to read whether the availability was legit or not.

    FYI. M&M’s website was down yesterday, so they were working on something these days. Maybe it was unrelated.

  6. January 3 seems to show availability from NRT-FRA still. I don’t have the miles for the redemption but I got all the way to the Purchase page. Might as well give a shot if you want to go and have the miles to do so even though lucky already tried.

  7. @ TroyG — Unfortunately that has always been the case. Swiss releases a lot of availability for their own members, so unless you’re redeeming Miles & More miles, using Expert Flyer for Swiss availability isn’t an accurate indicator.

  8. @ Jimgotkp — Right, that was the case for all the dates, and when you click “purchase” it says not available, unfortunately.

  9. I guess I was one of those lucky ones who redeemed and flew US DM miles for NRT-FRA on the 380 in F a couple of days ago. I made a last minute change and US had no problem seeing. Too bad it doesn’t seem possible anymore! 🙁

  10. This has been showing that way for a while now on At first, several folks were actually able to confirm it and got it ticketed, but it shortly died into what you are now describing.

  11. That is, those who got in early are booked and confirmed. But after the first few days no one else could get in on it.

  12. That sucks!

    And this problem is apparently not limited to the A380 flights.

    On 12/16, and show LH F award seats available on IAD-MUC, ORD-MUC, YUL-MUC and BOS-MUC. None of these show as available on ANA.

    Based on what you post, I suspect that these seats aren’t actually available to UA and CO frequent fliers.

    See also this FT thread:

  13. Unless LH has changed their policy recently, F awards on the A380 are for their HONs and SENs only.
    Maybe they allow to upgrade from C to F if seats are available on the day of the flight.

  14. This post contains so many defunct airlines (ok, it’s only BMI and Continental but still..)

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