My goal in life: first citizen of the Lufthansa First Class Terminal

My goal in life: first citizen of the Lufthansa First Class Terminal

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I seem to come up with my best ideas in my dreams, and last night was no different. I consider myself to be a pretty motivated person. I mean, I work out like at least twice a year, and my SAT score was higher than the maximum temperature my oven goes. Along the same lines, I think I’ve finally figured out my goal in life — to become the first permanent resident of the Lufthansa First Class Terminal.

You see, I love Germany, I love Lufthansa, and I especially love the Lufthansa First Class Terminal. For those of you not familiar with the First Class Terminal, as the name suggests, it’s a separate terminal for first class passengers in Frankfurt. It’s a completely different experience than what any other airline offers, since a minute after entering the terminal you’re already sipping a drink or having lunch and just waiting for your personal assistant to get you for boarding. Then you’re driven to your plane in a Porsche or Mercedes. It’s a pretty nifty place that every frequent flyer should experience at least once.

This brings me back to my grand scheme. You see, being self employed, I can work from anywhere. Some days I’ll work from Starbucks, some days I’ll work from Panera, some days I’ll work from my “office,” and some days I’ll work from bed (as I’ve been doing for the past week or so). In my opinion, the First Class Terminal makes a better office than any of those… well, maybe with the exception of my W Hotels bed.

So the way to get into the First Class Terminal is either to be a Lufthansa first class passenger or to be one of their HON Circle members, their super-dooper top tier elite status level. To earn it you have to accrue 600,000 elite qualifying miles within two consecutive years. So that breaks down to 300,000 miles per year, and if flown in discounted business class, it’s only 150,000 miles per year (because you earn 200% of base miles for paying business class). While it’s not cheap, it should be possible to fly 150,000 mile in paid first class for under $20,000, meaning it’s a total investment of $40,000.

Once I’m a HON Circle member I’d book a Frankfurt to Munich roundtrip ticket every day. I’d book Frankfurt to Munich at around 3PM, so that I can work most of the day in the First Class Terminal and have breakfast and lunch, and then the last flight of the night from Munich to Frankfurt, so that I can have dinner there and keep working. Then when I get back to Frankfurt I’d be roaming the streets till the First Class Terminal opens again at the crack of dawn.

So for about $120 a day I’d get breakfast, lunch, dinner, unlimited rubber ducks, and an office. Hmmm, I wonder if they’d kick me out eventually?

On second thought, the idea doesn’t sound quite as good when I put it down in writing…

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  1. mike

    Tom Hanks can play your character in the movie version of this plan: The Terminal 2

  2. snic

    Having just experienced the FCT (and LH F) myself for the first time, I have to say that if one must fly, this is certainly the way to do it.

    While I wouldn't go out of my way to spend time in a lounge, the food is, in fact, very good -- much better than what is served on board. And the atmosphere in the FCT is delightfully relaxed, with plenty of seats for everyone...

    Having just experienced the FCT (and LH F) myself for the first time, I have to say that if one must fly, this is certainly the way to do it.

    While I wouldn't go out of my way to spend time in a lounge, the food is, in fact, very good -- much better than what is served on board. And the atmosphere in the FCT is delightfully relaxed, with plenty of seats for everyone and no sense of crowding (which is not the case in the JFK and MUC LH first class lounges, although the food is equally good). So, if there is a next time, I'll plan to spend a couple of hours over a leisurely meal in the FCT, then sleep it off on the plane.

  3. Cook

    @Andrew: Nice video and wonderful music!

  4. Cook

    Hilarious, Ben. It confirms my thought that you are a certiable nut. A fun post!

  5. Phillip

    Love this idea! I've always said I get my best work done flying/in the airport, but I never thought to actually make the airport my office.

    Let me know if you get the cost down a tad. $40K + $120/day is a bit steep, even with the rubber ducks.

  6. caligal

    Let me sell you a home in Florida, amazing opportunites to be had, and you can design the place just like the Lufthansa Lounge you love!

  7. ARJ85

    Great plan - but just one thing (so you wont be too dissapointed) The rubber duckies are not unlimited!!!

  8. Pete

    @Lucky

    I just choked on my coffee laughing so hard.

  9. russell

    LMAO! I love it! i used to read your site solely for the information but you truly are hysterical! thanks for consistently making me laugh! :)

  10. Rachel

    I wish I would have known about this magical place before I booked business class tickets!

  11. JetsettingEric

    Life sometimes involves settling.

    You could always live in a United Club. Buy the membership and use the gate pass to get past the TSA. The TSA massage isn't as nice as one that you can get from the spa at BKK or from the chair at the FCT. Or, you can always work from a club outside security like LGA. The food isn't that good, but you will know that the packaged cheese will...

    Life sometimes involves settling.

    You could always live in a United Club. Buy the membership and use the gate pass to get past the TSA. The TSA massage isn't as nice as one that you can get from the spa at BKK or from the chair at the FCT. Or, you can always work from a club outside security like LGA. The food isn't that good, but you will know that the packaged cheese will still be the same packaged cheese at the end of the month. You gotta win some points for consistency. And you'll get there before all the seats fill up, because there generally aren't enough seats. You can ride the terminal A to C shuttle at EWR instead of the Mercedes. It's an upgrade in rental car speak because it's larger.

  12. Frequent Miler

    I love it! My only disappointment with this post is that you didn't figure out a way to fly lie flat red eye every night to get some shut eye...

  13. lucky

    @ Ben -- ROFL!

    @ JRL -- Sadly no free upgrades, just six upgrade vouchers per year.

  14. JRL

    Best post of '12!

    Does LH upgrade HON pax to business class on intra-europe flights?

  15. Ben

    Oh, and for $2400/month you could probably recreate the experience in a smart German apartment closer to home.

  16. Ben

    Be sure to subtract the cost of losing 3-4 hours per day to travel time commuting, unless you also live in the Munich airport.

    This is like my recurring dream of having no possessions and sleeping in an IKEA showroom at night.

  17. lucky

    @ Xandrios -- Indeed, so maybe I'd mix it up and do Zurich once in a while. :D

  18. Xandrios

    Plus, when you are HON...can't you enter the FCT when flying Swiss?

  19. Stephan

    Wow, I'm not sure what bad experiences Matt has had, but that sure doesn't sound like my experiences with LH. Sure LX is somewhat better, but they are pretty close IMO. I love the FCT!

  20. Ismael

    How about buying a refundable ticket and refund or change your ticket once inside? That way, you can get access everyday without the hassle of actually flying.

  21. Matt

    Having spent nearly 7 hours in the FCT late last year, I don't get the hype either. Yeah it's unique, but once you sit in the massage chair for an hour, smoke a cigar with 30 year scotch, drink a bottle of Bollinger all by yourself and lastly take a bath it gets boring. It was cool to experience it, but I'm not in a hurry to get back. Add to that the crappy food and F hard product still lurking on LH longhaul aircraft and I'd rather fly Swiss.

  22. Andrew

    You're crazy...and I love it. :) I have yet to fly F in/out of FRA so one day I'll see what this hype is about...until then I'll have to keep reading.

  23. Kevincm

    @Nathan - I need some friends in the USA to get me a few of those.... Good find ;)

  24. AJ

    Lucky, while Internet phones to talk with airlines can cost less, but you will need a real phone with high bills too!

  25. Max

    Looking forward to experiencing the FCT in 2013. (hopefully.)

    Ben, I'm curious how hat HON achievement itinerary for 20 000 $ would look like.
    Should you ever get bored enough to punch in the numbers I'd be really interested in all the steps.

  26. oliver2002

    Don't get the hype about the FCT... The feeling wears off pdq. Anyway, the place is due to be razed in the final phase of the a+ pier construction so you have till about 2016 to complete your plan!

  27. Andrew

    Lucky you are right, LH's FCT is the best!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=riRgReGxuhA

  28. Sean M.

    Lucky, with all due respect dude, this might be the dumbest idea I have ever heard in my life.

  29. Nathan

    Hi Lucky!

    I think I found a t-shirt you need to wear next time you fly...

    http://www.snorgtees.com/t-shirts/i-got-to-second-base-with-a-tsa-screener

    :)

  30. LarryInNYC

    Sounds like a plan. An alternative plan would be to seek counseling. Even a top-flight therapist is probably going to work out cheaper in the long run.

  31. Mike S

    You are forgetting how to off set the $120 a day .... you can start a side business selling cigars, rubber ducks, nuts and magazines on ebay. I'm sure there is no holes in this plan.

  32. worldtraveller2

    Sounds like a great idea to me!

  33. Matrix

    there are talks to remove FCT access to HON's travelling in Y, even more so if its a national connection (MUC-FRA).

  34. Andy

    You could negotiate with Lufthansa to let you stay inside after closing hours:D

  35. Michael H

    Sounds like becoming the Foursquare mayor of the place would be a cheaper proposition ;)

Featured Comments Load all 35 comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

mike

Tom Hanks can play your character in the movie version of this plan: The Terminal 2

snic

Having just experienced the FCT (and LH F) myself for the first time, I have to say that if one must fly, this is certainly the way to do it. While I wouldn't go out of my way to spend time in a lounge, the food is, in fact, very good -- much better than what is served on board. And the atmosphere in the FCT is delightfully relaxed, with plenty of seats for everyone and no sense of crowding (which is not the case in the JFK and MUC LH first class lounges, although the food is equally good). So, if there is a next time, I'll plan to spend a couple of hours over a leisurely meal in the FCT, then sleep it off on the plane.

Cook

@Andrew: Nice video and wonderful music!

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