Wow: Lufthansa Is Launching A380 Flights From Munich

Lufthansa surprised us with some big news today. When announcing their summer 2018 schedule, they revealed that they will be launching A380 flights from their secondary hub in Munich.

The airline has 14 A380s in their fleet, five of which will be transferred to Munich to operate flights to Los Angeles, Hong Kong and Beijing.

I was caught off guard by this announcement, one of the reasons being that five aircraft will result in a very small A380 fleet at MUC. You’d think it would make sense to introduce 747s first, perhaps moving their old 747-400s down there before doubling capacity with the A380.

Then again, Lufthansa has used A380s to all these destinations before from Frankfurt. Los Angeles, Beijing and Hong Kong are all popular premium routes, which would benefit from the premium-heavy configuration. Let’s hope this has a positive impact on award availability!

Additionally, Lufthansa is slowly phasing out their A340-600s. Since the replacements don’t feature first class (the A350 and some A330s), this is an effective way to maintain first class service to some destinations out of Munich.

Moreover, Lufthansa announced that they’ll be launching direct flights from Munich to Singapore five days a week, and increasing their weekly frequency to Chicago from seven to 10 flights.

From Frankfurt, they’ll be starting direct flights to San Diego next summer as well. It’s great seeing SAN get so much love recently. With this additional service, Condor, British Airways, Edelweiss and Lufthansa will operate nonstop flights from Europe in 2018!

Now I’m curious to see which routes will lose A380 service from Frankfurt…

What do you think about the expanded capacity from Munich?

Comments

  1. Great info Daniel, however, the a330 of Lufthansa does offer first class, in two of the three configurations. But you are indeed correct the a350 does not have a first class cabin. Keep it coming daniel!

  2. They can’t have 747 in MUC, because LH doesn’t have any maintenance capabilities for Boeing aircrafts in MUC

  3. Whoa! This is very cool! I had wondered why LH did not use any 747s or A380s at MUC. I would love an A380 on JFK-MUC and a First Class Terminal at MUC. Ha.

    @David, Lufthansa is removing F from their MUC-based A330s. There is also some evidence that this might be happening to FRA-based A330s as well since LH has stopped selling F on many 330 routes out of FRA. So once LH retires all of their A340-600s, there would be no F at MUC at all. However, with these A380s now there will be some on these routes.

  4. It will probably one of the Indian destinations served by the A380 that will lose its service. I’ve seen consistently that they’re flying half empty.

  5. The gulf carrrers are always loaded. But fly out of terminal 1.

    USA, not so sure since UA has like 4 flights in addition to LH.
    Whenever I go visit, I see lots of Asian travelers arriving in MUC That should be a clue.

    btw I think MUC needs to upgrade that terminal 1 pronto. Terminal 2 is way prettier

  6. Daniel, while you may have been caught off guard, the German press has covered this issue extensively: LH has had an ongoing conflict with Fraport (running FRA) for a while now about Fraport granting discounts to Ryanair at LH’s main hub. The move of the 380s to MUC is considered the next escalating move in this conflict.

    “You’d think it would make sense to introduce 747s first, perhaps moving their old 747-400s down there before doubling capacity with the A380.” — uhh, no. Not if you understand the rationale for the 380 move.

  7. Looks like you should review Lufthansa’s First Class ground experience in MUC as soon as possible 🙂

  8. That’s great. MUC-LAX urgently needs a capacity increase. This flight is almost always full.

  9. Great move by LH.
    I’m i the only one who immediately thought of the 5 A380s that SQ is retiring going to LH? At a rock-bottom price ofcourse?

    @Ronny is absolutely right. Ryanair got a 50% discount off its costs at FRA and LH + Condor are not amused to say the very least. The issue is bound to take a red hot with this latest announcement.
    But i’d think that LH clearly have done their homework and know the premium yields they are going to get on the routes from MUC. So i don’t think that it’s directly related to the issue with Fraport. Plus it is indeed a great show of faith in MUC given that their first 15 A350s are going to MUC.
    LH also partly owns MUC’s T2 and costs are apparently 20% lower than FRA.

  10. The only Indian destination with 380 service is DEL and if they remove the 380 from that sector it will be interesting to see if they replace with 747-8 or 340-600 both of which have the F Cabin. The only other service to DEL is from MUC on a 350 – no F cabin.

  11. Hi Daniel,
    Nice post, great information. I am a post graduate student currently working on my thesis. Good to see Lufthansa restarting Munich – Singapore route. May I ask please, if you would know by any chance about the Munich – Singapore route, when was it closed by Lufthansa in the first place? date with month and year or just the year. I shall be very grateful for your help as am unable to find this info on the net. Thank you so much.

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