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Update: 5/8/18: I originally posted this at the end of April to report on Lufthansa First Class award space open specifically between San Francisco and Munich, but it looks like there is now plenty of space on various other routes as well! The rest of the info in this post from late April still applies, just wanted to get this up as quickly as possible so you guys have the opportunity to book some First Class seats before they dry up. 

Lufthansa First Class has historically only ever been available to partners, like United or Asiana, within 15 days of departure. Looks like that may be changing, at least for booking with select Star Alliance miles.

At least for the moment, there is a good deal of Lufthansa First Class Award space available on the following routes, bookable with Star Alliance miles….

  • Chicago <> Frankfurt
  • Newark <> Frankfurt
  • Washington DC (IAD) <> Frankfurt
  • New York (JKF) <> Munich & Frankfurt
Scott flying Lufthansa First.
Scott flying Lufthansa First.

Unfortunately you won’t be able to book this award space with United or Aeroplan miles–as for whatever reason you won’t see it available through their award search engines–but you can book it with other Star Alliance miles like…

  • Singapore: transferrable from every major point type
  • Avianca LifeMiles: transferrable from ThankYou Points (and it’s instantaneous)
  • Aegean: transferrable from SPG Points
  • Asiana: by far the cheapest at 50k Asiana miles one way, transferrable from SPG (40k SPG points = 50k Asiana miles)

Fuel surcharges are going to be a reality booking with any of these miles but depending on which you redeem, they don’t have to be a total killjoy. The only exception is Avianca, which won’t charge you any.

Looks like using Singapore miles will run you roughly $380 in fuel surcharges one way (not counting any unavoidable taxes). Not too bad. The screenshots below are from Avianca LifeMile’s award search engine.

Planning an around the world trip?

Turns out, as of late, there are various international routes not touching the United States you can also book in Lufthansa First with plenty of anticipation.

Take a bubble bath in the Lufthansa First Class lounge in Munich.
Take a bubble bath in the Lufthansa First Class lounge in Munich.

Hat tip One Mile at a Time