US Airways Award Chart Confirms: No Lufthansa First Class Awards

US Airways Award Chart Confirms-No Lufthansa First Class Awards


It's no secret that US Airways has been blocking Lufthansa first class transatlantic award space for years, but they've finally made it explicit in their award chart, with a footnote at the bottom: 

“Beginning January 1, 2013, award redemption in Lufthansa first class cabin is unavailable”

US Airways Award Chart Confirms No Lufthansa First Class Awards


Ha! If only it had actually *been* available until now. Have US Airways agents gotten tired of travellers calling up and getting frustrated by not being able to book Lufthansa first class? Or perhaps the opposite–maybe enough savvy miles and points collectors have been persuading agents to long sell the space and US Airways wants to completely eliminate payments to Lufthansa for first class awards? Who knows, but at any rate it's now explicit in the award chart.


Wait, so I Can't Use US Airways Dividend Miles for Lufthansa First Class?

You haven't been easily able to for awhile due to US Airways blocking Lufthansa First Class, and you officially can't now. But read on.


Haven't Some People Been Able to Book Lufthansa First Class Awards with US Airways Miles?

Yes, although it can take several calls and finding a willing and capable agent. You need to ask the agent to do a manual sell.


Manual Sell? What Exactly Is That, and What Do I Ask the Agent to Do?

A manual sell is a way for the agent to get around the blocking of Lufthansa first class award space that US Airways has in its booking system. You would need to ask the agent to input the specific Lufthansa flight number, date, fare code, and route and create a reservation for you with the desired flight waitlisted. The agent should get a confirmation number for you, so if s/he doesn't or seems to be just checking space without creating a new reservation with your full name and date of birth, the agent probably isn't doing the manual sell correctly.


How Much Does This Footnote to the US Airways Award Chart Change Anything?

While it probably simply acknowledges the blocking of Lufthansa first class that US Airways has already been doing, only time will tell if manual sells will continue to work or not. It would be somewhat surprising if US Airways is now preventing all manual sells.


If I've Booked a Lufthansa Business Class Award, Can I Get a Manual Sell for a First Class Award on the Same Flight When Space Opens Up?

No; you really need to be making an entirely new reservation, and that won't work on a flight you're already booked on. You could try it on a different Lufthansa flight, but not one you're already booked on.


But Will Agents Do a Manual Sell?

Some will, most won't. You'd need to keep calling to find one.


Seems Like a Big Hassle…

Exactly–that's one of the reasons why I take a pretty dim view of US Airways miles, even though some swear by them due to some good business award values in the award chart. See Buying US Airways Miles with a 100% Bonus: 5 Reasons Why It's Not a Good Deal


So What's the Best Way to Secure a Lufthansa First Class Award?

If you want access to advance availability, you'll need Miles & More miles, but the award chart and fuel surcharges are expensive. The best value is with using United miles, since you pay the same number of miles that you do for United and other Star Alliance awards, and you can easily search and book online. The main drawback is that Lufthansa First Class is only bookable up to 15 days in advance, so you'll want to arrange backup flights or be a spontaneous traveler to make this work for you.

It's cheaper to earn United miles than US Airways miles with the bonuses and spend from the Ink BoldInk PlusSapphire Preferred and Freedom. I've already outlined how to create your own 100,000 point bonus with the Ink Bold or Ink Plus, and recently I simply front loaded some Amazon and Sears spend for 15,000 points with about $2500 in spend. Ultimate Rewards points transfer 1:1 to United and the transfer is fast, within a few minutes, so you can then book Lufthansa First Class if you're within the 14-15 day window.

Have you used US Airways Dividend Miles recently to book Lufthansa First Class? Share in the comments!


Related Posts

Lufthansa New First Class Review

Buying US Airways Miles with a 100% Bonus: 5 Reasons Why It's Not a Good Deal

More Expensive to Buy US Airways Miles After Price Increase

How to Find Star Alliance Award Seats

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! 

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Share This:
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments