Lufthansa First Class is One of the Best Ways to Fly Between the U.S. and Europe, after Singapore Suites on the A380. Unfortunately, United MileagePlus may be blocking Lufthansa First Class award space per Dan, which is generally available to Star Alliance partner airlines 15 days prior to departure (if you want to book awards further in advance than that, you'll need to earn Lufthansa Miles & More miles, although note that award rates are now a bit more expensive after the Lufthansa Miles & More Award Chart Devaluation).
Prior to United acquiring Continental, it was pretty common to experience United blocking Lufthansa First Class award space that was otherwise available to Star Alliance partners, although after the acquisition, that wasn't the case.
More recently, United MileagePlus was unable to book Singapore, Thai and ANA award space although this wasn't purposeful Starnet blocking, but rather, per United, a glitch in the way United's reservation systems interacted with the partner systems. It's again possible to reserve Thai and ANA awards using United miles, but unfortunately Singapore awards remain unbookable.
It's possible that there are technical glitches in the case of Lufthansa awards as well, although rather suspiciously, it only seems to be affecting Lufthansa First Class awards, which are of course far more expensive for United MileagePlus when it comes to compensating Lufthansa, than Lufthansa Business Class and Economy awards (which remain readily available on United.com).
Example 1: Lufthansa First Class FRA-LAX
In this first example, at time of writing, Lufthansa First Class between Frankfurt and Los Angeles LAX was available on May 16 with 70,000 Aeroplan miles:
Yet with United miles, there was no first class award space, only business class:
Example 1: Lufthansa First Class MUC-JFK
Similarly, Lufthansa First Class MUC-JFK was available on May 15 at time of writing with Aeroplan miles:
But a concurrent search with United miles showed no First Class award space:
Example 3: Lufthansa First Class FRA-DTW
Here's yet another example of First Class award space on the FRA-DTW route, with Aeroplan miles, on May 21:
Meanwhile, there's no space available with United miles for the same flight and date:
Have you experienced similar frustrations recently when attempting to redeem United MileagePlus miles for Lufthansa First Class?
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