Lufthansa Miles & More miles are useful for booking Lufthansa First Class to Europe, since there are few good first class flights between the U.S. and Europe. Singapore Suites on the A380 between JFK and Frankfurt are impossible to book in advance at the saver award level, British Airways First Class is cramped and closer to Business Class in quality, and many other airlines only have business class, which can still be fine, but nothing memorable. Emirates A380 First Class between JFK and Milan can be a good bet, if you have JAL miles, although there are now high fuel surcharges on flights originating in the U.S..
Lufthansa Miles & More awards can be one way, providing more flexibility since you can use other miles for the other flight, and you just need to earn 85,000 miles per person for a one way first class award between the U.S. and Europe. Plus, if you transit Frankfurt, you can look forward to the Lufthansa First Class Terminal, Frankfurt, including chauffeured car service across the tarmac to your next flight.
The issue is how to earn the miles, if you don't normally fly paid tickets on Lufthansa or other Star Alliance airlines. Here are my top picks for earning Lufthansa Miles & More miles without flying:
1. 50K Lufthansa Miles & More Credit Card Offer
See our Best Travel Credit Cards page for the link. This provides a good head start on the 85,000 miles needed for a first class award. You earn 20,000 miles after first purchase, and another 30,000 miles after spending $5000 on the card within the first 90 days. Note that there is a $89 annual fee that is not waived, but that's still a good deal for 50,000 Miles & More miles.
2. 3000 Lufthansa Miles for Enterprise Rentals of 3 or More Days
If your work or leisure travel calls for a car rental, you can earn 3000 Miles & More miles for each Enterprise car rental of 3 or more days that you book by March 31, 2018, where the rental is completed by May 31, 2018. You must use this link to book and provide your Miles & More number at the time of booking to earn miles; the car rental must be in the name of the Miles & More member.
3. Apple: Earn 1 Mile per Dollar
If you need to replace a laptop, iPad or iPhone, you can earn 1 Miles & More mile per Euro or dollar spent, in addition to the miles you earn with your credit card. Go to the Miles & More Apple page, enter your 15 digit Miles & More number, and click the “Go to shop” button to be directed to your country's Apple store page.
4. Miles & More Hotel Bookings (But Do the Math)
You can also earn miles via Miles & More Hotels, but be aware that you may be overpaying for the room–in my spot checks, the hotel cost was about 40% more expensive on Miles & More hotels with free cancellation policies, so you'll need to check if the extra cost is worth the Miles & More miles you'd be earning.
5. Transfer SPG Starpoints to Lufthansa Miles & More with 25% Bonus
If you have SPG Starpoints, you can transfer them in increments of 20,000 points = 25,000 Miles & More miles. If you took advantage of the Buy SPG Starpoints with 35% bonus offer last month, that works out to buying Miles & More miles at 1.8 cents per mile.
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