Lufthansa First Class Returns To The United States!

Lufthansa First Class Returns To The United States!

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In November 2020, Lufthansa cut first class on all routes to the United States. Since then, Lufthansa hasn’t sold a single first class seat to the USA, which would have been unthinkable pre-pandemic.

In a further sign of a (slow) return to normal, that is finally changing. As I type this, a Lufthansa aircraft with a first class cabin is currently enroute to the United States for the first time in well over six months.

Lufthansa 747-8s (with first class) return to the USA!

As of today Lufthansa is resuming first class service to the USA, and over the coming months we should see several more routes get first class. Based on the current schedule:

  • As of June 11, 2021, Frankfurt to Chicago (ORD) will feature first class
  • As of July 1, 2021, Frankfurt to Los Angeles (LAX) will feature first class
  • As of July 1, 2021, Frankfurt to Miami (MIA) will feature first class
  • As of August 1, 2021, Frankfurt to Newark (EWR) will feature first class
  • As of August 1, 2021, Frankfurt to New York (JFK) will feature first class
  • As of September 1, 2021, Frankfurt to Houston (IAH) will feature first class

While the Chicago route officially once again has first class service, the other dates very much remain subject to change. For example, just in the past few days, Lufthansa has postponed the 747-8 service date for Newark from July 1 to August 1.

Lufthansa resuming 747-8 service to the United States coincides with several European Union countries opening to Americans, and the European Union planning on opening to vaccinated travelers on a more widespread basis soon. In anticipation of this, at the beginning of the month Lufthansa reopened its Frankfurt First Class Lounge, though as of now there’s no service in the lounge due to local restrictions on indoor dining.

While the USA travel ban against the European Union is still in place, it’s expected to be lifted pretty soon, so I imagine we’ll see a surge in demand in the not-too-distant future.

Lufthansa’s 747-8 first class seat

Expect a smaller first class footprint in the future

Going forward, expect Lufthansa’s first class footprint in the USA to be much smaller. Going back a decade, almost all long haul Lufthansa aircraft featured first class, while at this point only Boeing 747-8s do. This comes after Lufthansa revealed plans to retire its Airbus A380 and A340-600 fleets, which were the other planes to feature first class.

For now only Lufthansa’s 747-8s feature first class

On the plus side, Lufthansa will install first class on some future delivery Airbus A350-900s, which will be based in Munich (since currently Munich has no planes with first class).

Lufthansa’s 747-8s feature a pretty awesome first class product. The plane has just eight first class seats, and most exciting for avgeeks is that the cabin is in the nose of the aircraft. With most airlines having retired the 747, flying on the jumbo jet is a real treat nowadays, especially if you can sit in the nose.

Lufthansa’s 747-8 first class cabin

How to redeem miles for Lufthansa first class

If you’re booking Lufthansa first class awards through partner frequent flyer programs, then you’ll find that awards become available at most 15 days before departure. Fortunately within that timeframe awards are reasonably easy to come by, and I’m already seeing lots of award space on the Chicago route.

If you’re looking to redeem miles for Lufthansa first class, consider booking through:

  • Avianca LifeMiles, which charges 87,000 miles for a one-way award between the United States and Europe
  • Air Canada Aeroplan, which charges 100,000 miles for a one-way award covering a distance of up to 6,000 miles; for just 5,000 additional miles you can add a stopover and continue to another destination

Bottom line

Lufthansa is resuming flying Boeing 747-8s to the United States as of today, and with that, we also see the reintroduction of first class on these routes. This comes after Lufthansa hasn’t offered first class to the United States for over six months.

This is yet another indicator of a slow return to normal, though unfortunately in the long run the pandemic will have greatly reduced Lufthansa’s first class footprint, given aircraft retirements.

Anyone hoping to fly Lufthansa first class across the Atlantic in the coming weeks & months?

Conversations (23)
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  1. Warren Faassen

    I am noticing something odd with first class availability. Looking at a flight from MIA to FRA on July 11th, it shows no paid first class option. This is odd because expert flyer shows 5 seats available. Is this normal?

  2. Joe

    I'll probably aim for LAX-FRA in October on our way to Greece. Then onward to Maldives, returning QR suites.
    Not too optimistic on availability though. Can find FRA-ORD F, but can't find ORD-FRA.

  3. Jon

    Gotta fly that bird, beautiful 747-800. Use to see it flying over my house shortly after takeoff on the EWR-FRA run.

  4. Miramar

    Minor concern of course, but I hope they bring back the roses soon, I flew LH F a few weeks ago to and from JNB and the cabin aesthetic is really different without the red color

  5. Cedric Pinsonnault

    I remember when it was 100k for a RT F ticket with aeroplan...

  6. LH_First_Lover

    Lucky, you missed that Lufthansa offers the First Class seats also intra-Europe in Summer on selected flights. You can reserve the seats with a business class ticket. For example, I'm booked on LH1152 on July 17 and looking forward to 1A.

  7. Bill n DC

    Bummer no flying B747-8 to IAD :-(

  8. Andy

    Answering your question: Yes, I'd hope to fly to the US (if possible in First Class). However, there's no sign that the US will lift the ban on Schengen countries, I'm afraid. And I simply don't have the time to spend two weeks in Mexico or Santo Domingo, before entering the US.

  9. NYGuy24

    I flew LH first class and compared to CX, SQ, JAL and ANA I was disappointed with the onboard service. The ground service at the FCT was better but still I came away very disappointed. They weren't even in the same league as those other airlines.

  10. Weymar Osborne

    Have Lufthansa removed First Class from all of their A330's? I think I heard a few years ago they were removing them from some of them but don't know if they meant to remove F from all of them.

  11. Gino

    No service at any F and C lounges cuz of COVID indoor restrictions !!!. And having meal service onboard is not an indoor dinning ?????

    1. Claus

      Good point, they should probably remove onboard service as well. Lufthansa management will be intrigued.

  12. LH flight

    Have a return flight books Fra to Mia in June. Grabbed the business ticket with aeroplan points. Still don’t see any availability for first but keeping an eye out!

  13. Emily

    A fan of LH first but I’ll admit that those colours are getting dated. Somehow the darker seats on their 747-8 first cabins just don’t blend well with the otherwise cook and calming interior.

  14. TravelManager

    Well, as much as I would like to say I am excited about this, the ground experience really needs to improve. A First Class lounge without any kind of F/B offering? I would feel like I wasted points. Once that gets sorted out, I think it will be great. And am also really interested to see what they end up doing with the A350.

  15. Endre

    I used to fly Lufthansa First class cabin quite a lot in the past (paid ticket only). Current restrictions and lower quality of service won't motivate most people to book it unless the ticket is paid by taxpayers (politicians) or with points. I'd rather fly La Premiere or QR QSuites from East Asia instead .

    1. Florian

      I wouldn't waste points on a travel experience with tons of restrictions and lower quality of service, but as we all know paying tickets with points is beneath you and your weekly trip to Asia anyways so I'm not blaming you.

    2. Hans Peter

      Just wanted to point out that I also exclusively fly on paid tickets and always in first class. Even when traveling in European domestic first class - they’ll just reserve an entire row for me and put another cabin divider behind me.

      I am not sure why I am reading a miles and points Blog because I do not care as I am rich and pay cash for my flights myself.

    3. Florian

      You should go for private jet. An entire row for yourself seems pathetic. :-)

  16. LarryInNYC

    What is it that makes flying in the nose section of the 747 so attractive or interesting? Seems like you're basically turning a wide body into a narrow body (or, I guess, medium body). I've flow Lufthansa business in the upper cabin and having a smaller cabin was nice but otherwise I'm not sure how it differed from a cabin placed in the "regular" part of the plane.

    1. Mattux

      This is probably more of an AvGeek thing, but the nose of the 747 is my favorite place to sit on any airliner out there. It always feels more private given it is a smaller section with fewer seats; and the cone shape typically means you have more windows per seat with a panoramic type perspective and beautiful light when the window shades are open. Given a 747 ride is so rare now, particularly over...

      This is probably more of an AvGeek thing, but the nose of the 747 is my favorite place to sit on any airliner out there. It always feels more private given it is a smaller section with fewer seats; and the cone shape typically means you have more windows per seat with a panoramic type perspective and beautiful light when the window shades are open. Given a 747 ride is so rare now, particularly over the past year when her retirement was accelerated by more carriers, it is all the more special.

  17. Max

    How do you see the chances that the "Meilenschnäppchen" will also return soon??

Featured Comments Load all 23 comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

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Mattux

This is probably more of an AvGeek thing, but the nose of the 747 is my favorite place to sit on any airliner out there. It always feels more private given it is a smaller section with fewer seats; and the cone shape typically means you have more windows per seat with a panoramic type perspective and beautiful light when the window shades are open. Given a 747 ride is so rare now, particularly over the past year when her retirement was accelerated by more carriers, it is all the more special.

Florian

I wouldn't waste points on a travel experience with tons of restrictions and lower quality of service, but as we all know paying tickets with points is beneath you and your weekly trip to Asia anyways so I'm not blaming you.

Hans Peter

Just wanted to point out that I also exclusively fly on paid tickets and always in first class. Even when traveling in European domestic first class - they’ll just reserve an entire row for me and put another cabin divider behind me. I am not sure why I am reading a miles and points Blog because I do not care as I am rich and pay cash for my flights myself.

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