Lufthansa First Class Award Space: Booked 15 Days in Advance
Rewards Credit Cards
Avatar_160_hilary
Hilary Stockton
Google+

My Award Booking Service helps travelers book first class and business class with miles and points. As an independent affiliate of Cadence, I also have access to Four Seasons Preferred Partner, VirtuosoPeninsula Hotels PenClub, Dorchester Diamond Club, Belmond Bellini Club, Shangri-La Luxury Circle, Langham CoutureRitz-Carlton STARS, Starwood Luxury Privileges, Rocco Forte and other 5-star hotel partners, so I can book, for no extra cost, your perfect luxury hotel or luxury cruise with VIP amenities not available anywhere else. Become a client and upgrade your stay!

GOT A BLOG POST IDEA?
Have a travel question we haven't covered yet? Want to share your secrets for traveling well for less?

Lufthansa First Class Award Space Booked 15 Days in Advance

 

Lufthansa usually releases first class award space no more than 14 days in advance, so I was pretty excited to book first class yesterday, November 1, for 15 days in advance, November 16. 

Lufthansa First Class Award Space Booked 15 Days in Advance

 

Now, I realize that one day more probably doesn't make a difference to most people, but then again, it's good to know when to seriously start looking, since in this case, if I'd only started looking at this flight at the 14 day mark, the space might have already been gone. 

Since I often get questions about Lufthansa First Class, here's a FAQ that will hopefully answer some questions.

Lufthansa First Class Award FAQ

Which Miles Should I Use to Book Lufthansa First Class?

I'd recommend using United miles to book Lufthansa first class--you avoid the higher surcharges that are now charged with Aeroplan awards, you don't face Starnet blocking as you do with US Airways (more about that below) and you use a lot fewer miles than you would with Miles & More miles, although it's true that only Lufthansa's Miles & More members get advance access to first class award space. Plus, if you're booking a roundtrip award using United miles, you can tack on a free United one-way.


When Does Lufthansa Open Up First Class Award Space to Partners?

I used to tell TravelSort readers and clients 14 days, but I now know that it can be up to 15 days in advance, given the award I just booked yesterday for a flight 15 days away. I would advise checking at the 16-17 day mark, just in case. Note that first class award space may continue to be released as it gets closer to the flight, so don't give up after you've checked 14-17 days out.


How Do I Search for Lufthansa First Class Award Space?

While it's easiest to search using United.com given the user-friendly calendar view, the problem is that there's quite a bit of phantom availability. So don't get too excited when you see an EWR-DUS first class flight a couple months out, it's pretty much guaranteed to be phantom. You can double check the availability by searching on ANA. See How to Use ANA to Search for Star Alliance Award Space.


I'm Getting an Error When I Try to Book a Lufthansa First Class Award--Help!

Most likely it's phantom availability as described above, and not actually available to book. Check ANA, and if the space seems to be there and you're still unable to book, you can try calling United, but....


Why Can't the United Phone Representative See the Availability I See?

I tried calling United in order to tack on a segment that I wasn't able to add on United.com, even using the Multiple Destinations option. It turned out to be a waste of time, however, because both agents I spoke with weren't able to even see the particular Lufthansa flight that I was looking at on United.com--it just wasn't in their database at all. Is it possible that I just got two clueless agents back to back? Perhaps. But it definitely wasn't due to a phantom award space issue, since I not only verified it on ANA, but subsequently was able to book it on United.com. So unfortunately, don't count on United phone reps seeing the exact same flights you see on United.com. You may want to just bite the bullet and snag the key transatlantic flights, and pay any necessary fees to amend the itinerary (or if you're booking with miles from a United elite's account, you can avoid the fees entirely).


Why Can't I Book Lufthansa First Class with US Airways Miles?

This is one of the reasons I almost never can get excited about the various US Airways promotions--they block Lufthansa first class award space. Now, I have heard of people managing, after many calls, to actually get a Lufthansa first class award ticketed, but why bang your head against a wall when you can use United miles instead? And especially if you can earn a slew of Ultimate Rewards points with great bonuses using AMEX Bluebird + the Ink Bold or Ink Plus for 5X, Chase Freedom 5X category bonuses, Amazon 5X, etc. This month there's 15X available for Kohl's spend via the Ultimate Rewards Mall and Freedom.

 

What Should I Do If I Want To Fly Lufthansa First Class But Need to Plan Ahead?

This is where having plenty of miles and points can really help. You'll want to book back-up flights, either using United but booking on United or other Star Alliance partners that do offer advance availability (or even Lufthansa Business class awards for the flights you hope to get first class on) OR use American AAdvantage or other miles to book backup flights. Then monitor Lufthansa availability starting 16-17 days out to try to snag Lufthansa first class. United non-elites, make sure to note the United Award Fees or see if a family member or close friend with elite status would be willing to book so you can avoid these fees. 


Related posts

How to Deal with No More Lufthansa Advance First Class Availability

Lufthansa First Class Review

Top 5 Ways to Get First Class Award Tickets to Europe

Lufthansa's New Business Class Rollout and Routes

Airlines and Routes with First and Business Class Award Availability for Europe

10 Best International First Class Seats for Award Travel

 

Need Award Booking Help? Our fee is as low as $75 per ticket if you book your hotel through us.

If you enjoyed this, join 150,000+ readers: please follow TravelSort on Twitter or  like us on Facebook to be alerted to new posts. 

Become a TravelSort Client and Book Your Hotel with Virtuoso or Four Seasons Preferred VIP Amenities!

  • |
  • Print
    print |
Related Articles
Comments
Avatar_60_masha Masha G. commented 05 Nov 2012
That all sounds extremely complicated. Is it worth the effort?
Picture?type=large Harley S. commented 06 Dec 2012
I have a question about the return flight - if Lufthansa doesn't release space more than 14 days out at a time, do you book the outbound flight first and then hope to get the return flight later on? Thanks!
Avatar_60_hilary Hilary Stockton commented 06 Dec 2012
Harley, yes--unless you have a lot of flexibility, I would book a backup flight either on the Lufthansa flight you hope to get a first class award on or on another airline so you have some way back for your return, although note that unless you're a United top elite there are fees to change class of service, airline, departure date, etc. See http://www.united.com/web/en-US/content/mileageplus/awards/travel/ticketing.aspx You can avoid close-in ticketing fees with the United Club card, but not the other fees.
Avatar_60_hilary Hilary Stockton commented 06 Dec 2012
@Masha Sorry for the delayed reply, but yes, I think it's worth it--you can read my review of Lufthansa's New First Class and decide for yourself! http://travelsort.com/blog/lufthansa-new-first-class-review
Leave a Comment
Comment
Facebook-logo
Hotel Rewards Credit Cards
Get Free Email Blog Updates
Popular Articles
Square_75k_amex_platinum_bonus_offer
1/24/2017
  75K AMEX Platinum and 75K AMEX Business Gold Rewards bonus offers are available to many, using private browsing (Safari) or an Incognito browser window (Google Chrome). To maximize your chances of seeing the offers, be sure to clear your...
Square_which_travel_credit_cards_i'm_using_most_and_why
2/10/2017
  Which credit cards should you use for which spend? TravelSort reader Ann writes "I've read many of your previous travel credit card posts, but I'm curious about which credit cards you're using most now, and why. My husband and...
Square_earn_ultimate_rewards_points_at_shop_through_chase_with_amex_or_other_credit_card
2/12/2017
  Can you earn Ultimate Rewards points at Shop Through Chase with an AMEX or another credit card? TravelSort reader Jeff writes "I plan to buy a new iPhone and would prefer to put it on my AMEX, since I've...
Square_review-ana_first_class_bed
3/23/2017
  This ANA First Class 777 Review for a New York JFK to Tokyo Narita flight is part of a new trip report including Tokyo luxury hotels, restaurants and sushi bars. Having previously enjoyed JAL First Class, we were looking...
Square_flight_review-virgin_america_first_class_sfo-jfk
2/4/2017
  Virgin America First Class markets itself as the way to fly in style, but my recent flight experience was very much style (if you can call it that) over substance. Here's my review of Virgin America First Class: Virgin...
Square_review-british_airways_first_class_747_london_to_new_york-seat_1k
2/26/2017
  This British Airways First Class 747 Review is one of my several reviews of British Airways First Class; see all posts tagged British Airways, or for other airline first class and business class reviews, see my Airline Reviews. Since...
Square_persistence_pays_off_for_aadvantage_awards
3/13/2017
  Persistence often pays off, including for award tickets. I book many AAdvantage awards for Award Booking clients, because even though Alaska miles are often less expensive, have the advantage of allowing a stopover on a one way award, and...
Square_50k_citibusiness_aadvantage_bonus_offer_no_24_month_language
2/25/2017
  A 50K CitiBusiness AAdvantage Bonus Offer without the usual 24 month restriction is available, via Reddit, and I've updated my Best Travel Credit Cards page with this offer. Normally Citi cards have language stating that the bonus is not...
Square_jal_777-300er_business_class_cabin_sky_suite_review
3/29/2017
  This Japan Airlines (JAL) 777-300ER Business Class Sky Suite Review is from our recent trip to Japan, including ANA First Class, JAL Business Class review, and Tokyo luxury hotel reviews and Kyoto luxury hotel reviews. For previous posts in...
Square_review-british_airways_concorde_room_lounge_lhr-fireplace
2/14/2017
  The British Airways Concorde Room lounge offers private cabanas for passengers traveling in British Airways First Class, as well as complimentary 15 minute spa treatments at Elemis Spa. I although I previously reviewed this lounge a few years ago,...