Lufthansa A380, what to do, what to do…

A couple of days ago I blogged about Lufthansa’s next A380 destination, San Francisco. They’re going to start daily service there on May 10, replacing the current daily 747 service. I think this choice came as a shocker to many of us for a few reasons. First of all, Swiss began service to San Francisco last year, meaning there’s already a lot of new capacity to/from Europe from San Francisco within the Lufthansa “family.” Beyond that, United runs a 747 daily, Lufthansa runs an A340 from Munich, and in the summer United runs a second frequency. In other words, in the San Francisco to Frankfurt market, we’ll go from seeing two daily 747s in April to seeing an A380, 747, and 777, all daily, in the summer.

As I mentioned in the previous post, I encouraged people to book first class awards for later in the year, before the A380 was loaded into the system (because Lufthansa doesn’t open up first class award space on the A380 for partner airlines). It worked for many people, and I even snagged a couple of seats for December.

Yesterday Lufthansa finally loaded the A380 into the system, though only for the summer schedule, through October 29. Beyond that, the flight still shows as being operated by a 747. This raises the question, is it only a function of Lufthansa not getting around to loading the winter schedule yet, is Lufthansa not sure yet whether they want to keep the A380 in the market, or do they already know they won’t be flying the A380 there come November?

On one hand I believe they just haven’t loaded the A380 into the system for winter yet, but on the other hand, I would have thought they would at least get rid of all the first class award space in the schedule after October 29. Then again, there’s no huge harm in having a couple of award passengers on each flight for a couple of months. After all, if anything it will only generate more interest, and I doubt they would sell all eight first class seats at full price anyway.

So I’m in a bit of a pickle. On one hand I want to wait it out and see what they end up doing for the winter schedule, but at the same time, I want to make alternate travel plans if the A380 doesn’t materialize. The tough thing is that we probably won’t get any confirmation of this for a long time if they don’t plan on keeping the A380 on the route…

I guess I’ll just have to be patient for once…

Filed Under: Lufthansa
  1. I, like you, am playing the waiting game. My thought is that, as a worst case scenario, I fly on the 747-400 with the new (for the 744) interior.

    Worse things šŸ™‚

  2. We lucked out. Going to CPT through JNB and got the 1st class on the 744 but it got switched out to the A380 so we get to go on it twice now. Lucked out. Not sure what to say about San Fran though at this point. Good luck.

  3. What’s the big downside to waiting? I’m sure you have plenty of points (in plenty of programs) to make additional reservations

  4. So looking forward to flying on the a380 but I very appreciate Lucky’s update…..This morning I was able to book an RT 1st class in December and will be very disappointed if they revert back to the 747 for the winter.

  5. I agree with Brian. It wouldn’t make much sense to switch from the A380 to to the 747 with the old F. Either way, I would be excited to fly on the aircraft.

    Besides, I already had three SFO flights booked for May/June/July that have been changed to the A380. Yipee!

  6. Would folks mind sharing what programs they’re using to redeem seats on LH? US Airways can’t find for me any 1st availability for the remainder of 2011, ex SFO or LAX.

  7. I’m going to wait it out for my November reservations. No harm, unless I really need those miles for something else (I do not have millions in my bank like uh-hem) šŸ™‚

  8. I’d book now to nab the award. If Lufthansa subsequently reverts to 747 then you’ll have the option to cancel the award.

    If you don’t book now, then by the time it is confirmed A380 there may be no possibility of getting an award (due to blackout).

  9. I twice called US Airways who said they had only Business Class for my dates in December. I asked for them to do a manual sell for 1st Class but they said they couldn’t do it. Hung up the phone and then called Continental and immediately booked 1st Class for the same dates.

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