Today (August 10, 2020): Top 10 reasons why I like to fly with Lufthansa.
Deutsche Lufthansa AG, commonly known as Lufthansa, is Germany’s flag carrier. When combined with its subsidiaries (Austrian Airlines, Swiss, Brussels Airlines and Eurowings), it is the second largest airline in Europe in terms of passengers carried. In total, the Lufthansa Group has over 700 aircraft, making it one of the largest airline fleets in the world. The carrier is one of the founding members of Star Alliance, the world’s largest airline alliance formed in 1997. Lufthansa stands for efficiency and offers a robust product on the ground and in the air. It’s also one of my preferred airlines to fly whenever I have a choice, and here are ten reasons why.
Have you ever flown with Lufthansa? If so, what was your experience? Leave a comment.
There is more information (with YouTube clips & reviews) below the slideshow.
10. A CONSISTENT FLEET-WIDE BUSINESS CLASS PRODUCT
While Lufthansa’s Business Class is nothing to write home about – seats are arranged in a less than stellar 2-2-2 layout – it does have the advantage that the product is consistent across the carrier’s wide-body fleet. All of Lufthansa’s wide body aircraft – which comprises the Boeing 747, Airbus A330, A340, A350 and A380 – features the same type of seat and cabin layout. This is a contrast with many other carriers, which often operate different types of Business Class products across their fleet (leaving you puzzled at the time of booking what type of seat you will get). That might chance though next year since Lufthansa will introduce a new Business Class product on its newly delivered Boeing 777 aircraft.
9. MILES & MORE FREQUENT FLYER PROGRAM
Miles&More is the frequent flyer program used by the airlines of the Lufthansa group (Lufthansa, SWISS, Brussels Airlines, Austrian Airlines, and Eurowings) as well as by a few other carriers such as LOT Polish Airlines, Adria Airways, Croatia Airlines, Luxair, and Condor. The program was launched in 1993 and is now the largest frequent flyer loyalty scheme in Europe with more than 30 million members. Passengers earn miles on all Star Alliance airlines as well as several other airlines and non-airline partners. Availability for award redemptions with Lufthansa is generally very good (often four Business Class tickets per cabin); and the program regularly launches mileage bargains where you can book award tickets at half the number of miles normally required for the trip.
The Lufthansa Group’s success depends primarily on safety (more on that below) and reliabity of its flight operations. If there’s one thing German’s flag carrier is good at, it’s getting its passengers on time to their destination as the carrier ranks in the top 10 of the most punctual airlines in the world (with 83.21% of its flights arriving on time). Lufthansa uses artificial intelligence to merge data from various processes that are relevant for stable operations (for example aircraft replacement and maintenance as well as crew scheduling). And if a delay or cancellation occurs, the carrier does keep its passengers regularly updated, with ground staff and pilots making up-to-date announcements.
7. A GREAT FIRST CLASS SEAT
While the First Class cabin design on Lufthansa’s aircraft is not the most impressive one in the skies, the seat itself extremely comfortable in all positions and features generous dimensions with a width of 31 inches (78 cm) and a pitch of 90 inches (230 cm). In fact, it ranks among the widest seats in the airline industry. Upon request, the flight attendants turn the seat into a fully flat-bed with a length of 81 inches (205 cm). The bed is dressed with a comfortable mattress topper, temperature-regulating duvet, a Fleuresse cotton sheets, a throw, and a thick pillow. Overall, Lufthansa’s First Class bed(ding) is superb (but still not as good as the First Class bedding offered by Cathay Pacific).
6. THE BOEING 747
Before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Lufthansa was the world’s second largest commercial operator of the Boeing 747 (behind British Airways). It has 32 Boeing 747s in its fleet and predominantly uses the 747-8 model (the carrier was the first to receive the aircraft back in 2012). The new 747-8 has been stretched to make it 5.6 m (18 ft) longer than its immediate predecessor, the 747-400. That qualifies it for the title of the world’s longest passenger aircraft. It seats 362 passengers but still consumes significantly less fuel per passenger than the 747-400. Due to the pandemic, many airlines are retiring the iconic Boeing 747, so Lufthansa is one of the few remaining airlines that still offers aviation geeks a chance to fly the Queen of the Skies.
5. A HIGHLY EXPERIENCED CREW
It’s not something most avid travelers think about, but knowing you’re in reliable hands when flying from one side of the world to the other is always a plus. Which is why it’s worth noticing that Lufthansa regularly features in lists of the world’s safest airlines and has not suffered any fatal accidents since 1993. That is a reassuring thought for a nervous flyer like myself. Lufthansa employs some of the most experienced crews in the air and on the ground. More than 10,000 pilots work in the cockpits of the Lufthansa Group airlines, with over 4,000 of them flying for Lufthansa. About six percent of the Lufthansa Group cockpit personnel are female. Pilots have an average of 15 years’ experience.
4. BUSINESS CLASS PRODUCT DURING THE PANDEMIC
COVID-19 poses unprecendeted challenges to airlines. In response to a 70 to 90% drop in demand, airlines all over the world have slashed flights amid the outbreak, and have introduced significant downgrades on the in-flight service, especially in premium cabins. For example, Turkish Airlines, which used to serve some of the best airplane food in the world, now serves pre-packed boxes with cold snacks to Business Class passengers on long haul business flights. However, Lufthansa has barely adjusted its onboard catering (and rememeber that Germany is setting the standard when it comes to dealing with the pandemic). So, remakably, flying the carrier’s mediocre Business Class now offers a much better experience compared to some of its competitors.
3. FIRST CLASS TERMINAL AT FRANKFURT
One of the great perks about flying First Class with Lufthansa is that it gives you access to the über-exclusive Lufthansa First Class Terminal in Frankfurt, widely considered one of the best airport lounges in the world and essentially thé Mecca for frequent flyers. Everything in the lounge (which is housed in its own separate terminal) is geared to your personal well-being while spending your pre-flight hours. The space has relax chairs, quiet rooms with day beds, spacious bath and shower rooms, fine wining and dining with cuisine by Michelin-starred chefs, a cigar lounge, a bar where the drinks include more than 130 different varieties of whisky, offices, and a spa.
2. FOOD AT THE FIRST CLASS LOUNGES
While Lufthansa’s onboard food is only so-so, the food it offers at its First Class lounges in Munich and Frankfurt is trully excellent. The lounges have impressive buffets, featuring everything from a ham slicer and home-made salads to a wide variety of amuse bouches and cheeses. The flagship lounges also feature intimate restaurants, where menus are created by Michelin-star chefs like Harald Wohlfahrt who is regarded as one of the pioneers of contemporary German gourmet cuisine. Menus feature dishes such as lobster with pineapple-mango chutney and crustacean foam, veal two ways with hummus and beech mushrooms, and mousse dome with raspberry ice cream and rhubarb.
1. GROUND SERVICE FOR FIRST CLASS PASSENGERS
Ane area where Lufthansa really shines is its ground service for First Class passengers in Frankfurt. A personal assistant takes care of all travel formalities, accompanying passengers through the First Class Terminal’s own security check-point (where there’s never a wait) and checking them in for their flight. Once your flight is ready for boarding, the personal assistant escorts passengers downstairs to the Terminal’s lower level where passport control occurs (when departing on a non-Schengen flight). Next, because of the Terminal’s remote location, passengers are driven by limousine (Mercedes S-Class, BMW, or Porche Cayenne) from the First Class Terminal to their plane.