Lufthansa

Economy Class - Intra-Europe

Airbus 320s have good space, ARJ85s are cramped with 3-3 seating. ARJs (used to be BAe146s) can only really seat 5 across, so the 3-3 config is very narrow, suiting skinny small people. Seats don't tilt far, but then Europe isn't that big. Seats on back row of Airbus and ARJ85s don't tilt at all. Lufthansa are simply being cheapskates.

Service is very efficient and friendly, snack offered is very tasty and healthy. No inflight entertainment at all, but lots of freebie newspapers and magazines on offer.

Why can't the folks who run the European services show the international folks how to run an airline?

Summary: Not bad at all, apart from the ARJ85s.

New Long Haul Business Class

This should be a signicant upgrade on the old Lufthansa business class, with modern stylish seats by Recaro. In seat power for laptops, video on demand, flat beds, etc, all the good things for a modern airline. Well, the seats are probably the worst business seats I've ever come across. Hard to sit in, and when flat they slope at about 20 degrees, so you end up sliding down to the bottom of the seat as you try and sleep. And the seats are lumpy and bumpy when flat - it's impossible to make them remotely comfortable to sleep on.

New video system is nice, but someone without any clue seems to have decided that the menu should be cursor/mouse driven rather than the left/right up/down arrow button system on other airlines. So it's almost impossible to navigate smoothly. Very annoying.

Someone, the same clueless designer no doubt, decided that the headphones should be plumbed into the entertainment system, and not be detachable like in most other airlines. The headphones are stored in a little alcove between the seats. When the entertainment system is reset, the volume is reset to about three quarters maximum - so all you hear when you come into the biz cabin is the "tsh tsh tsh tsh" of music coming from the headphones. It's a bit like some of these annoying train journeys when portable music systems such as the Sony Walkman came out - all you heard in the cabin was "tsh tsh doof doof tsh tsh" from the headphones. Great!

Legroom is fine when seated, and when fully reclined, so no real complaints there.

Food is by and large still inedible, service is still "you will eat this now!" - shudder.

Summary: Lost opportunity to be good - just mediocre. Avoid at all costs.

Old Long Haul Business Class

Here was I, hoping that Lufthansa's international business class would be significantly better than their Economy offering (see below). No chance. Uncomfortable seats, very little recline, not much legroom, United standard inflight entertainment, and inedible food.

Summary: Avoid.

Long Haul Economy Class

747s are extremely cramped, probably 29in pitch or so. Bean poles like me can't sit straight in their seats, and are guaranteed backache within an hour or so. Also the seats recline about 2 degrees, so don't expect to get any sleep. Just lots more back and neck pain. My only two trips on Lufthansa International resulted in 3 days of backpain and a trip to the doctor, who diagnosed compressed nerves at the base of my spine - OUCH! The upside of this all is that Lufthansa's dire cabin space resulted in my medical exemption - so I never have to fly Economy in them again.

Service is efficient, food is an insult to German cuisine, and is basically inedible. Even pigs would turn their noses up at it.

Summary: Avoid. One of the worst international airlines I've ever been on. Although I should be thankful for one thing - they are the reason my employer now flies me in business class as my doctor became highly concerned for my future medical well being.


Last updated by Philip Smith on Friday, 12-Mar-2010 05:18:22 AEST.