Reply To: Lufthansa Advice

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Tom Otley

Apologies if you’re already read it, but although it’s a while since I flew it, here’s what I thought at the time

The seat
There are two business class cabins on the main deck, one large, and one small just aft of the galley. To see a seatplan click here.

This is a three-class configuration, with 262 economy seats, 92 business and eight first class seats. Those 92 business class seats are distributed with 60 on the main deck, and 32 seats on the upper deck, with the lower deck being 2-2-2 and the upper deck being 2-2. To see a previous flight review on a special flight from Frankfurt to Washington DC click here.

Once again, to see a review of the outbound flight on the upper deck click here. This review concentrates on the lower deck.

The first point is that the most roomy seats in the new Lufthansa business class are these centre seats – D and G. I was ready for the difference to be small, but it’s not, it’s large. The foot well has more room for your feet, the side table is much larger, with the headphones, IFE control and table being arranged differently, and in the case of the table, makes it easier to extricate from the arm.

Perhaps I was lucky, but even the table itself felt firmer than the one I had used on the upper deck, and certainly it didn’t slide around so much.

I was in a bulkhead seat (front row) which meant that there were slight differences in the seat – my foot rest was in the wall in front for instance, instead of in the back of the seat in front of me, but walking up and down the cabin looking at the other seats, there didn’t seem to be any major differences in that amount of room between these centre seats.

One of the main benefits of D and G seats is that with a 2-2-2 configuration, in both D and G you have direct access to the aisle and of course do not have anyone climbing over you.

On the upper deck window seats have large side storage bins for us, and of course this does not apply on the main deck, but the overhead lockers are very large, and in addition the personal storage spaces are slightly roomier than you get on the upper deck.

By the side of the footrest there are two storage spaces, one which is open which pulls out slightly for putting in books or personal items (this was large enough for me to put in my laptop when I had finished working), and then another which has a handle and angles out from the wall – in here you will find an amenity kit with flight socks, eye mask, ear plugs, toothbrush and toothpaste and lip salves, and a bottle of water.

The washrooms on the lower deck on both sides are very large and have a bench with a pale leather cushion on top – you lift up half of this to find the toilet. It is useful if you want to change, for instance.

Best seats definitely the middle seats D and G. Avoid the front row (where I was), and the back row, but any of those in rows 5-8 would be fine. I went back and had a look at the small business class cabin between the galley and economy behind. It would be fine for a day flight I suppose so but I think too noisy for the night.

The journey was quite strange. We took off and then for 30 minutes the seat belts sign remained on, during which time even the flight attendants remained seated, but did nothing when a couple of passengers stood up, one even going off to the toilet for five minutes during some turbulence.

After some 30 minutes the light turned off, but still there was no inflight entertainment on, though we could watch the moving map, and once I could walk around the cabin I went back to the galley and saw they were struggling to reset the system. After 50 minutes they came on the tannoy to admit their problems and to thank us for our patience. I learned later that this was the latest of the new B747-8 aircraft to join the fleet, so perhaps this had something to do with it.

It seemed that the problem also affected the in-seat power which I was using (it takes UK plugs without adaptors, as well as US and European plugs), so I made sure to get as much work done as possible without wasting my battery time on my laptop. Eventually after 80 minutes the system was reset, and my laptop screen suddenly got brighter as it started to charge once more. The entertainment finally started and then the power went off again, so I told the purser and he turned it back on again, but no luck, so my neighbour kindly said I could use his power point, and I carried on working. It’s a long flight, and all this passed the time.

and from another review (not by me)

Which seat to choose

The upper deck does feel exclusive and although I was quite close to the galley, I couldn’t hear much noise at all as there is a foyer area in between. There is a lavatory near the staircase and two up front, so I would avoid sitting in the first row as there are always people passing by. The V shape also means flight attendants have to keep leaning over the aisle seat to serve the window seat, so sitting by the aisle can be annoying at times. On this leg I was by the window and what I particularly liked was the window storage space, allowing me to access my carry-on without having to get up.

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