50,000 Lufthansa Miles Card Ends on Sunday

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Barclays increased the sign-up bonus from 20,000 miles to 50,000 miles with the Barclays Lufthansa card, but the offer ends on December 15, 2013 i.e. Sunday.

See this post for all the ways to use your Lufthansa miles!

In short, you can use this for ~2 coach tickets or 1.5 business class flights within the Continental US on United.

50,000 Lufthansa Miles Card Ends On Sunday

Until December 15, 2013 You Can Get 50,000 Miles On The Lufthansa Card

Lufthansa is a German airline & a member of the Star Alliance.  This means that you can redeem Lufthansa miles for flights on other Star Alliance airlines, including United & US Air in the US.

Barclays Lufthansa Mastercard

Link:  Lufthansa 50,000 Miles

Link:  18 Ways to use Your Lufthansa Miles!

You have to spend $5,000 within 3 months to get the full 50,000 mile bonus.  This is higher than other Barclays cards.

For example, you get 35,000 miles with the US Air card after your 1st purchase, and only have to spend $3,000 on the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® to get the sign-up bonus (worth ~$440 in travel).

You also get a companion ticket with the card, but it’s only valid for coach.  You have to buy a “H class or higher” (i.e. a more expensive coach ticket) AND also pay the taxes and fees for the free “companion” ticket. So this likely won’t save you any cash.  But it is good marketing!

The $79 annual fee is NOT waived in the first year, unless you’re a Senator or HON Circle member.  But $79 for 2 domestic coach flights sounds good to me.

Spending $5,000 within 3 months could also be tough for some.  If you’re new to miles and points, I’d rather spend $5,000 within 3 months on the Chase Ink Bold or theChase Ink Plus to get 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points.  Or on the American Express Starwood hotel card for 25,000 points.  That’s because those points are easier to use if you’re just starting out.

But the 50,000 mile Lufthansa card could be a good option for some because the card is from Barclays.  Barclays usually uses the TransUnion credit bureau, which is often not used by the other banks.  And also doesn’t have as many lucrative miles and points offers as the other banks.

That said, Barclays is trying to increase their market share and is likely to issue the Hawaiian Air credit card next year, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see this offer again!

How to Use 50,000 Lufthansa Miles

Link:  Lufthansa Award Chart

You will pay fuel surcharges for all award redemptions except on United flights within the US and North and South America, US Air and LOT (a Polish airline).  But you do NOT pay fuel surcharges for flights within the US on United. or US Air.

But note that US Air is leaving the Star Alliance in ~3 months, so you won’t be able to use Lufthansa miles for US Air flights after that.

You can book awards online on the Lufthansa website for flights on airlines such as Lufthansa, Austrian Air & Swiss Air.

But you have to call Lufthansa to book awards on other airlines such as United and US Air.  There is no charge to book awards on the phone.

Dial 800-581-6400, press “2″, and then press “1″ to redeem miles for a flight.

You can fly within 1 country, say within the US, for 25,000 miles round-trip in economy.  Or for 35,000 miles in United First Class (because it is considered business class when you use Lufthansa miles) within the continental US.  You can also book 1-way awards with Lufthansa miles.

50,000 Lufthansa Miles Card Ends On Sunday

25,000 For a Round-Trip Coach Award (on US Air or United) & 35,000 for a Round-Trip First Class (on United) Award Within the Continental US or within Canada

1)   2 Coach Tickets Within the Continental United States

You only pay 25,000 Lufthansa miles for a round-trip coach ticket within the Continental US or Canada on US Air or United.  There are NO fuel surcharges on US Air or United.

And you will pay only 24,000 miles for the flights if you book them as 2 separate one way awards.  That’s because Lufthansa rounds down the 1-way cost from 12,500 miles to 12,000 miles!

Flights to Hawaii cost 20,000 miles for a coach one-way award, which is still a good deal!

2)   1.5 First Class Tickets on United Within the Continental United States

You only pay 35,000 Lufthansa miles (compared to 50,000 United miles) for a round-trip First Class award on United within the continental US or within Canada.

And you will pay only 34,000 miles for the flights if you book them as 2 separate one way awards.  That’s because Lufthansa rounds down the 1-way cost from 17,500 miles to 17,000 miles!

50,000 Lufthansa Miles Card Ends On Sunday

Emily in United Domestic First Class

See this post for more details on how to find United awards seats and book them with Lufthansa miles.

3)  To Europe From the US for 50,000 Miles in Coach

You can fly to Europe in coach for 50,000 miles round-trip.

You will pay fuel surcharges (~$300+ per 1-way) if you’re NOT flying on US Air or LOT, so this may not be worth it in coach.

And US Air will soon leave the Star Alliance, which means that you have only ~3 months to book flights for travel on US Air with Lufthansa miles.

4)  Access to First Class Seats on Lufthansa

Lufthansa blocks other Star Alliance airlines such as United from accessing some of their First Class award seats.

But if you have Lufthansa miles, you get access to more First Class award seats on Lufthansa.  But you will pay a lot of cash and miles.

You will pay 170,000 miles for a roundtrip First Class award + fuel surcharges of ~$800!  But you’d get to sleep in a real bed while flying…

50,000 Lufthansa Miles Card Ends On Sunday

You Can Fly First Class on Lufthansa

You can also transfer Starwood hotel points from the Starwood hotel personal and business credit cards to Lufthansa if you need to top-off your account for an award.

Note that Lufthansa seems to be releasing First Class seats less frequently than when I wrote about this previously in June 2013.  That said, you usually will still find them available the closer it is to your departure.

Bottom Line

You can get 2 round-trip coach award flights within the Continental US from the Lufthansa 50,000 mile offer.

Or use them for 1.5 First Class flights within the Continental US.  Or use them in any of these 18 different ways!

Note that you will likely pay fuel surcharges if you redeem them for most international flights, but there are ways to avoid or lower the fuel surcharges!

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15 Responses to 50,000 Lufthansa Miles Card Ends on Sunday

  1. So with no fixed need at the moment for either card, if I were churning do you like this better or the Arrival? I’d think for domestic two, close to, biz/1st on United would trump the travel credit on the Arrival.

  2. Andreas Wiedenfeld

    I was declined today for the Lufthansa card since I have opened 9 new credit card accounts in the last six months. I called the reconsideration line and offered to transfer some credit from my US Airways credit card but was still declined? Any additional thoughts?

  3. @Mike H – It depends. If you want to travel in First Class on domestic US flights on United, the Lufthansa card is better. Or if you don’t mind paying surcharges for international flights, go with the Lufthansa card. But I’d pick the Arrival card if you want coach travel within the US and are restricted on dates because of school, work, etc.

  4. @Andreas W,
    Well I am about to apply for the card this week – and I have had 13 new cards this year so let’s see what happens …

  5. How often do you fly in order to gather 50 000 miles? I’m a member of the Star Alliance for 4 years already and I’m still under 10 000. I fly about 5-6 times a year and I was hoping that one day I’ll get a cheap hotel reservation or maybe a free flight…. Nope, not even a teddy bear yet.

  6. We have been planning a European trip for next fall and were frantically thinking of ways to plump up our United points to get business class seats. This would be great if we could COMBINE them with our existing United points. Do you have any idea if that is possible?

  7. Diamond Vargas

    @ Anne – It is not possible to actually combine them into one account, but you could use Lufthansa miles for one of the tickets traveling in one direction, and use United miles for the remaining segments. So as an example:
    Ticket #1:
    — US city to European city: Lufthansa miles (based on 52k miles business class pricing and the 55k you’ll have from this card)
    — European city to US city: United miles

    Ticket #2:
    — US city to European city: United miles
    — European city to US city: United miles

  8. @Anne – You can’t combine them with United miles. But, you can book a 1-way using Lufthansa miles and a 1-way using United miles. But remember that you will pay high fuel surcharges when using Lufthansa miles.

  9. Hello Darius,
    Are you able to share some advice on the Lufthansa miles wrt the upcoming United miles devaluation? I assume the 50k Lufthansa miles will be “less” if the redemption is on United metal?

    Thanks for your advice.

  10. @Mike – Lufthansa isn’t changing their award program for now, so your miles should be worth the same amount on Lufthansa.

  11. Thanks for your reply to my question Darius.

    I am having a tough time figuring out how to spend $5k in 3 mths. From your previous articles, will any of the gift card purchasing strategies work with this credit card?

  12. I was approved for this card. I’ve never tried the AMEX Bluebird strategy but I’ll give it a go this time since I have to meet the $5k spend (this is the biggest hurdle yet for me in my CC application history to date).

    I still prefer any gift card purchase strategies if you can offer or provide me a link to your articles, especially the ones which do not charge a fee to implement.

    Thanks again for all your advice. I have been an avid reader of your articles.

  13. I have tried 10 times to register for a miles and more number and at the end is says for technical reasons to try later. this is over a week of trying please help me my tell number is 978-468-2788 I want to get a Lufthansa chase master card and the offer is only good till tomorrow

  14. Hi, I was approved this Lufthansa with 50k mile bonus. But I receive email saying eligible for 20k sign on bonus. Is there any way I can get 50k as I was supposed to? Thanks for any thoughts.

  15. @Mike – You should be able to buy gift cards with the Lufthansa card.

    @ Lucy – I’d call Barclays to confirm what the bonus is on your card.

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