Lufthansa today has revealed two renderings of a new first class product as part of its new “Allegris” product generation. The new suites look amazing, though I’d imagine the implications are bad for award travel.
New First Class Suite On Lufthansa – Here’s What We Know
We don’t know much about the product, but here is what we know:
- these suites will offer “nearly ceiling-high walls that can be closed for privacy”
- the seat is “almost” one meter wide (39.4 inches)
- all seats are forward facing
- every suite has a “large personal wardrobe”
- eating together will be officially possible for the guests at a “large” dining table, whereby one can sit across from their partner or fellow traveler (not that I do not already do this…)
- entertainment screens extend across the full width of the suite, with Bluetooth connectivity for wireless headphones
Lufthansa has promised more details next year. We previously learned that the new first class product will debut on the A350 in late 2023. 10 A350-900s will feature first class and be based in Lufthansa’s Munich (MUC) hub.
We’re all just guessing here, but I tend to think the first class suite will be four across and the A350 will offer a single row of first class. While it is possible Lufthansa might choose a Cathay Pacific-style three-across first seating, I also think German practicality will call for four seats, especially if the center suites can merge into a single double bed. I doubt the “large” closet onboard will be all that large. Put another way, I do not think Lufthansa will sacrifice one seat just for a larger closet when it already has beautiful closets onboard the 747-8 and A380 (and I suspect we will see something similar on the A350). We may see something like first class on China Southern with higher doors.
I am cautiously optimistic that Lufthansa will put 6-8 seats in first class on 747-8 and suspect they will remain in the nose, though it would be amazing to see eight suites upstairs (as in years past on the 747-400). If the A380s stick around, we could see eight suites in the current space upstairs.
Bad News For Award Space
Of course, being a miles and points blog I am already preparing for life after Lufthansa First Class, at least when using miles. Currently, Lufthansa restricts first class award space to its own members and opens space to partners within 14 days of travel. All Lufthansa First Class cabins have eight seats and with a bit of flexibility, it is often possible to score a last-minute award seat, as I’ve done for years (including twice this year already and for my whole family last Christmas).
Even if the new first class cabin has eight seats (my guess remains four), I expect Lufthansa to hold back seats as it does for SWISS First Class. On SWISS, you can only redeem miles for first class if you hold Senator or HON Circle status in the Miles & More program (there are some limited exceptions).
So there’s that…but I also think if Lufthansa is going to maintain first class on a long-term basis, it needed a more competitive product.
The new renderings of the next generation of Lufthansa First Class are stunning. I cannot wait to see the product in-person and think, while not being revolutionary, it addresses all the current drawbacks of Lufthansa First Class (lack of privacy, small screen). It is great to see a carrier commit to investing in a “real” first class product.