Lufthansa has announced that it has changed its approach to First Class upgrades for members of Miles & More.
Beginning April 3, 2018, all revenue based Lufthansa Business Class fare classes will be eligible for upgrade to First Class. Until this announcement, Miles & More members could only upgrade using their E-Vouchers if they flew certain Business Class fare classes. For example, purchasing a ‘P’ fare (deep discount fare) ticket would not allow you to upgrade to First. That is now no longer the case. Any Business Class ticket that you PAY for is eligible for upgrade. Award tickets obviously remain un-upgradeable!
Lufthansa made this switch to align with the policy in place with SWISS who has always allowed any Business Class seat to be upgradeable to First Class using e-vouchers. It’s a smart move for LH to make the upgrade policy consistent between the 2 Lufthansa Group carriers that offer First Class cabins.
Speaking from personal experience, the previous policy impacted my decision making a great deal. It was the old upgrade policy that had me choose to fly with SWISS more often than Lufthansa when I had e-vouchers to use for upgrades.
Now LH group passengers have a level playing field when it comes to choosing which of the 2 carriers to fly if they are looking to redeem upgrades to First Class.
Miles & More has announced that Lufthansa passengers can earn an additional 50% award mile bonus for flights booked between March 12 and May 31, 2018.
The offer is valid as long as travel has been booked on Lufthansa.com and that the flights takes place between March 12 and August 30, 2018. The flights must be operated by Lufthansa in order to qualify for the bonus miles.
The bonus will be based off of your fare class, so the award will be a factor of the fare class, and not actual miles flown.
You must provide your Miles & More number at the time of booking in order for you to qualify for the bonus miles. The bonus miles will be credited as late as 12 weeks after your qualifying flights. And of course, bonus miles do not count toward status qualification.
One small part of the fine print: Residents of Austria, Switzerland and the 13 people living in Lichtenstein are not eligible for the promotion.
Beginning this May, members of Miles & More will be able to start combining their efforts with family members living in the same household when it comes to earning and redeeming miles.
Though specifics have yet to be released by LH, it appears that that the new plan will allow 2 adults and up to 5 children in the same household to share Award Miles. Status miles will not be combinable. In other words, Dad and the kids can’t put their miles together to make Mom a Senator, but they can get her a First Class ticket by combining their award miles.
Being able to combine miles will be a huge benefit especially when the MM deep discount or ‘Meilenschnappchen’ promos are considered. With monthly ‘Meilenschnappchen’ offers passengers can usually book award travel for nearly half of the miles that are usually required.
Hopefully M&M leaves the redemption table alone while doing this. If they raise the amount of miles needed to redeem for a given award, it would nullify at least some of the benefit of being able to pool miles from several accounts.
I expect more announcements regarding Miles & More over the coming weeks. Miles & More is celebrating its 25th Anniversary so I suspect more user-friendly features to be unveiled as we approach the busy summer travel season.
On my wish list? Knock a few dollars off of the surcharges that are associated with redeeming miles, especially in First or Business Class! 🙂