As luck would have it, Lufthansa has followed up a day after my post regarding the Premium Economy rollout with more information regarding the new seat.
As of today, passengers can book Premium Economy seats for travel that begins on December 10, 2014. December 10 is the date that the seats will enter service aboard 747-8i aircraft ONLY and at the moment only the 747-8i operated flights can be booked for Premium Economy travel.
Destinations that will be covered by the 747-8i flying from Frankfurt to Washington DC, Seoul, Beijing, Hong Kong, Chicago, Buenos Aires, Sao Paulo and Mexico City.
To reward those making early reservations, Lufthansa is running a Premium Economy Fare sale valid for travel between December 10 and March 30, 2015. The fare sale is a 15% discount off of normal Premium Economy fares. For example, the fare between Chicago and Frankfurt during this sale will be approximately $1500.
ADDITIONALLY, The A340-600 will debut Premium Economy in January from Munich to Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo.
Beginning in late April the A380 will have the new cabin on flights between Frankfurt and San Francisco, Houston, Miami, New York (JFK), Singapore, Shanghai and Johannesburg.
When booking, passengers will have 3 levels of Premium Economy Tickets: Basic, Basic Plus and Flex.
BASIC tickets will be non-refundable, earn 100% of miles flown and have a rebooking fee ($300). Basic tickets will not be upgradeable with the use of Miles & More Miles.
BASIC PLUS tickets will be refundable ($300 fee), earn 100% of miles flown and have a rebooking fee ($300). Basic Plus tickets will not be be upgradeable with the use of Miles & More Miles.
FLEX tickets will be refundable ($0 fee), earn 150% of miles flown and have no rebooking fee. FLEX tickets can be upgraded to the next higher cabin available by using Miles & More Miles.
Here’s a chart that illustrates the differences between the Premium Economy fare classes:
WHAT TO EXPECT ON BOARD AND AT THE AIRPORT
Premium Economy passengers will be entitled to several enhancements when it comes to their experience as compared to Economy:
Passengers will be allowed to check 2 pieces of luggages (50 lbs. each) at no cost.
Access to a Lufthansa Business Class Lounge outside of Germany will cost only $35.00.
Access to the Lufthansa Arrivals Lounge in Frankfurt will cost €50.
Star Alliance Gold Credentials can still be used for access to Senator/Business Lounges and Arrivals Lounge at no cost.
On board, Passengers will receive a Premium Economy Amenity kit along with a bottle of water. Additionally, meal service will be enhanced and will be served on porcelain china. Passengers will also be greeted by an enhanced IFE (In Flight Entertainment) system that features an 11 or 12 inch screen, approximately 15-20% larger than the Economy Class IFE screen.
Before you ask about earning or redeeming Star Alliance member FF program miles, Lufthansa has not set up the infrastructure at the moment. Expectations are that by mid-2015 Lufthansa will establish a fare class that can be used by partner airlines for redeeming miles for travel in Premium Economy. In the same vein, mileage earning rates have yet to be determined as well. My thoughts on this is that LH is waiting for the Premium Economy cabin to be fully rolled out throughout the fleet and timetable before delving into frequent flyer program compatibility with other airlines.