Lufthansa is one of many European carriers offering premium economy–a class between business and economy–on nearly all intercontinental routes from Germany. Lufthansa was an early adopter of premium economy and the product is a comfortable middle.
What to know about Lufthansa premium economy
With the exception of a small subfleet of A340 aircraft, all widebody Lufthansa aircraft serving longhaul routes from Germany are outfitted with Premium Economy.
While ground services are roughly the same as Economy, Lufthansa has aimed to make the Premium Economy experience in the air an upgrade over economy in many ways–a larger, more comfortable seat with more recline, comfier pillows and blankets, an amenity kit, and upgraded meals are all part of the Premium Economy experience.
Examples of previous deals we've found in Lufthansa premium economy
- Frankfurt for $1,099 roundtrip
- Switzerland for $1,119 roundtrip
- Croatia for $1,086 roundtrip
The Lufthansa premium economy experience at the airport
Lufthansa premium economy lounge access
Lufthansa offers Premium Economy passengers access (for an additional fee) to their business lounges at most airports, plus the Welcome Lounge (the arrivals lounge for locally-arriving passengers) in Frankfurt. Passengers can purchase access at the ticket counter or Lufthansa service desk in most cities; at Frankfurt and Munich they can purchase access directly at the lounge.
Lufthansa premium economy check-in
Premium Economy passengers use the economy check-in areas at the airport, unless their Lufthansa Miles & More or Star Alliance status affords different benefits.
Premium Economy passengers get double the checked baggage allowance of economy, and can check two free bags weighing up to 23 kilos / 50 pounds each.
However, unlike Premium Economy on some other airlines, the carryon baggage allowance for Lufthansa Premium Economy is the same as economy (it’s higher for Business and First passengers).
The Lufthansa premium economy experience in the air
Lufthansa premium economy seats
Lufthansa offers the same Premium Economy seat on all aircraft, with significant recline, an adjustable headrest, and a large touch screen entertainment screen with an optional remote control in the armrest. Tray tables are in the arm rests.
The Premium Economy cabin is at the front of the economy cabin–with some exceptions. On the 747-8 and some versions of the 747-400, there is an economy cabin between the Business Class cabin and the Premium Economy cabin. There is a small ceiling divider between economy and Premium Economy; otherwise the cabins are not separated.
On aircraft where the Premium Economy cabin is behind the Business Class cabin, there is a full curtain and signage indicating Premium Economy passengers should travel aft to use the economy class lavatories.
On most aircraft, the Premium Economy cabins are set over the wings, so the views from the window seats are generally obstructed by the aircraft wing.
Aside from the additional checked baggage allowance, there aren’t significant benefits between Premium Economy and economy on Lufthansa. Premium Economy passengers use the same check-in areas and board with the same priority as economy passengers unless their frequent flier status confers additional benefits separately. Passengers will find a bottle of water at their seats upon departure, and are also offered a non-alcoholic welcome drink prior to takeoff if seated in Premium Economy.
Lufthansa premium economy meals
Meals on Lufthansa Premium Economy are enhanced vs. economy. Passengers are presented with a paper menu upon boarding. Main courses are based on the cuisines of Central Europe (on some flights departing Germany they may take inspiration from the cuisine of the destination).
Dishes are china instead of the disposable ones used in economy, and portions are slightly larger and better quality (although Lufthansa’s economy meals are also generally good).
On flights up to 6.5 hours, a snack is offered before arrival. A cold meal is offered on flights longer than 6.5 hours, and on flights longer than 9 hours, a hot meal is served. In Economy, the second meal is a cold vegetarian one. Unlike many competitors, Lufthansa enhances both meals served in Premium Economy instead of just the main service.
Entrees are typically one meat or one pasta, served with cheese, salad, and dessert. Bread rolls are also served warm from a basket on many routes.
Lufthansa’s intercontinental flights offer a full bar, free of charge (although flight attendants will refuse service to passengers who appear to be intoxicated). Premium Economy passengers receive the same bar service as economy passengers.
Passengers will find amenity kits at their seat–generally a pared down version of the Business Class amenity kits. Headphones are distributed after takeoff, and are the same earbuds as those on offer in economy.
How to book Lufthansa premium economy
How much does it cost for a premium economy ticket on Lufthansa?
A Premium Economy ticket will often be roughly twice the cost of the same flight in economy, although that fluctuates with demand for both classes of service.
How to upgrade to premium economy of Lufthansa for free
Lufthansa, as a general rule, does not upgrade passengers except in rare cases of operational necessity, such as an oversale.
How much does it cost to upgrade to premium economy on Lufthansa?
Lufthansa sells upgrades to premium economy via both auctions and flat fees ranging from several days prior to departure to at the ticket counter on the day of departure. Fee-based upgrades start around $400 and vary by the length of the flight and route.
How many miles to upgrade to Lufthansa premium economy?
Award charts are quickly becoming a thing of the past as airlines move toward dynamic pricing of awards and upgrades. Lufthansa generally offers upgrades from economy to Premium Economy from 20,000 to 45,000 Miles & More miles per segment, based on the original fare paid. Members of Star Alliance member airline programs may also use miles to upgrade from unrestricted full fare categories.
In many ways, Lufthansa’s Premium Economy is an upgrade over economy, but in several others—notably the airport experience from check-in through boarding, and the onboard experience outside of meals and seating—it’s a standard economy product. Nevertheless, the seat and meal upgrades are generally worth the difference in fare for long haul flights between Europe and destinations across the oceans.