Lufthansa is a German airline that was founded by the country’s government in 1926. The airline has since been privatised and is now publicly traded.
For this reason, I was super excited when Lufthansa invited me to attend the unveiling of their new logo and livery (plane exterior painting) redesign in Frankfurt, Germany. Because, while covering the event was meant to be the main thrust of my assignment, a huge perk was getting to fly to and from Deutschland in Lufthansa’s business class cabin.
So it was with great anticipation that I boarded my business class flight at New York’s JFK airport en route to Germany, then at Frankfurt’s International Airport on the journey back home.
While I’m no aviation guru, I do know a good thing when I see it, so allow me to show you the main differences I discovered flying business class on Lufthansa from New York City to Frankfurt. Here’s my flight review!
Overview of Lufthansa
It maintains hubs at Frankfurt Airport and Munich Airport, plus has its headquarters located in Cologne, Germany. Over 250 Airbus and Boeing aircraft make up the entire Lufthansa fleet. The largest number of these aircraft are Airbus A320s.
The airline flies to more than 200 destinations worldwide with some of the most popular Lufthansa flights those to London, Barcelona and Dusseldorf. Lufthansa was one of Star Alliance’s founding members in 1997. In addition to the other Star Alliance members, Lufthansa has several airlines with which it has codeshares.
Do you fly business class often? I sure don’t, which is why I was thrilled to experience a Lufthansa business class flight last month. Here’s my flight review of Lufthansa Business Class from New York City to Frankfurt!
I may fly a lot (over 100 flights last year alone!), but it’s not often that your girl gets to fly business class. Actually, if I’m completely honest, flying business class is a pretty rare occurrence for me. Sadly, it almost never happens due to my a) lack of coins (those full-fare tickets ain’t cheap!) and b) lack of airline status. Le sigh and #firstworldproblems.
Online check-in is available for Lufthansa flights, and opens 23 hours ahead scheduled take-off time. Online check-in also closes as late as 30 minutes before departure, depending on the flight.
can check in online using a mobile or web browser, and will need their booking number to do so. When checking in online, passengers can choose their seat for the flight.
There is no extra charge for doing so. It is not possible to purchase check baggage allowance during online check-in, and instead, this is determined during ticket purchase. Lufthansa’s online check-in is not available for all routes so passengers should check before they fly.
These days budget airlines have taken over lesser-served parts of Europe with direct flights. So is it still worth flying with a legacy carrier?
As the saying goes, there’s a first time for everything. Not only was this my first time visiting Naples, but it was also my first experience of Lufthansa and Frankfurt Airport.
For pre-flight activities, the reservation and check-in process seemed quite straightforward. With the airline having multiple frequencies from Vilnius to Frankfurt and from Frankfurt to Naples, there were a few options and thus greater flexibility.
My plans had changed a few weeks before the booking and rescheduling the flight for a day earlier was easily conducted through the Lufthansa website – thankfully without too much cost. Checking in was easy and had complimentary seat selection – certainly not a feature of budget airlines.
The boarding process
Getting to (and through) the boarding process was straightforward. However, conducting this in the small terminal that is Vilnius’ international airport was slightly chaotic and messy.
This is to be expected – even in larger airports: Wherever you go, passengers line up before their boarding groups are called, causing confusion as to where the real line actually begins. For the flight from Vilnius, I appreciated the fact that gate staff were actively checking boarding passes and groups/zones, and sending premature boarders back to their seats.
It was a similar situation in Frankfurt, except that passengers scanned their boarding passes and were ‘rejected’ if their group had not yet begun to board. One other great thing I appreciated about Lufthansa’s boarding procedure was the fact that they grouped people by window, middle, and aisle seats. People holding aisle seats were put in later boarding groups (groups 4 and 5).
After priority boarding, passengers with window seats were boarded in group 3. Despite being relatively forward in the cabin, my wife and I boarded as group 3, ahead of 4 and 5, due to booking together and having a window and middle seat.
The inflight experience
Getting seated for the first leg of the journey, we occupied seats 9A and 9B in an Airbus A319-100. These seats were located just in front of the emergency exit row and thus couldn’t recline.
Despite this, there was ample legroom, even with my small bag under the seat in front of me. The cabin was clean and the seats were comfortable.
However, the seats lacked any in-seat power for charging devices. Not a big deal for some people – especially on such short hops (although the heavily intoxicated man two rows up made it known that he was definitely not satisfied with this deficiency.
One of the most disappointing parts of this journey was the lack of snacks and/or meal options. The day before, Lufthansa had emailed us to say that no food would be served onboard.
Was it worth it?
While the flights were smooth and uneventful, it’s definitely a challenge to justify the difference in price between a basic economy fare with Lufthansa and going with a budget carrier – which for some routes in Europe, are faster due to being direct services.
In fact, while there’s no direct service from Vilnius to Naples, Ryanair does operate a direct flight to the Italian city, from (relatively) nearby Kaunas. The price difference can be big: At least twice the price depending on the time of booking and the day of the flight.
Offering some final thoughts, choosing Lufthansa for this trip offered increased flexibility and convenience, allowing us to arrive at our destination earlier in the day from our home city.
When comparing the journey with the budget alternative, friends who took a direct Ryanair flight from Kaunas to Naples ended up getting delayed, stressed, and tired. Their later arrival left them with fewer transportation options and a more expensive ground trip to their final destination. Despite these drawbacks, their overall costs were still lower.
If you’re searching out the best way to get to or from Europe the usage of miles, you cannot beat Lufthansa first class. She then provided me with a Lufthansa-branded stylus and pen, along with a stuffed airplane toy and children logbook.
Why? Because she noticed me taking masses of pictures and assumed that I turned into an aviation fanatic. Your enjoy will begin at one of the excellent airport lounges within the world, in which you will then be pushed to your aircraft and escorted to a fancy, spacious and relaxed 8-seat cabin.
Once airborne, you will flavor some tremendous eating and top-notch drinks, experience complimentary, speedy Wi-Fi and relax with a number of premium facilities.