Miles and More is making a bunch of changes, some of which are positive but on the whole will not please elite members.
Effective September 1, top tier HON Circle status credits can only be earned from premium cabin fares.
HON Circle Members are guaranteed the ability to book business class travel, even if business is sold out, but that will now require the highest (most expensive) booking class. I didn’t realize that wasn’t the case already and do understand that if they’re going to oversell the cabin it needs to be for full revenue.
Discounted business class (Z) bookings will earn fewer miles — 1,000 award on domestic flights (down from 1500), 1250 within Europe (down from 2000), and 150% of flown miles for intercontinental flights (down from 200%). And Z is no longer the most deeply discounted fare class, there’s a new P for promotional business class far that will earn 500, 750, and 100% mileage flown for domestic, European, and intercontinental flights. These start off as Lufthansa changes this month, and roll out to Austrian in mid-May and to Swiss in September.
And Z and P discounted business class tickets are no longer eligible to be upgraded to first class on Lufthansa, effective September 1. On Swiss at that time first class upgraded will go up from 15,000 miles to 35,000 miles each way.
On the plus side for Miles & More members, one-way partner redemptions become available September 1, and German residents will only need 100,000 status miles instead of 130,000 to hit Senator status (previously Germans were penalized with a higher mileage threshold than the rest of the world).