Flight Review | Lufthansa Economy | Boeing 747-8i | FRA-BOS

Some Basic Background

Just a few days ago, I returned to America from my first international trip (except Canada). On the outbound I flew United, which was comfortable and a great flight on the 767-400ER (Yes, a great flight on United. It exists) but unfortunately I was sitting next to someone I didn’t feel comfortable taking pictures around because I didn’t know them, so no review for that flight. However, on the return, I was able to take pictures of the arguably more interesting flight. I was told the 748’s seats were as hard as rocks from a few people so I was really wondering how it would stack up to United’s comfortable Economy seats.




But first…

Few quick tips for those of you who have never visited Europe. I felt strongly about some of these things and they kind of contradicted what people say in general so I wanted to put them out there.

  • Driving in England. It’s not awful to get used to the left side if you’re from anywhere else in the world. However the roads are very narrow. We had to pull over to / hit the curb multiple times to let approaching cars pass with our standard “American” sense of driving.

  • Pickpockets. There is no need whatsoever to wear your bag on your front. No one does it. You’ll just look silly.

  • Tickets. Pre buy. Especially if going during tourist high seasons. It cut the Eiffel Tower wait time from ~3 hours to just 25 minutes.




Now onto the review

I’ll run through the flight, from boarding to deboarding. Keep in mind this was my second, full service, long haul flight.




Boarding

Boarding started on time, however, halfway through there was a 10 minute hitch for unknown reasons. After, boarding continued as usual. Here’s a picture of D-ABYK, my aircraft. Retro (D-ABYT) is parked beside it. Wish we could’ve flown on that instead.

This 747-8i is just around 5 years old making it right in the middle if not on the older side (is the last letter given based on when they were built? I have no idea). Once boarding commenced, there was a huge pileup on the jetbridge. Luckily with two aisles and the flight attendants directing people to the correct one it went through fast. It’s really amazing how big the 748 is. It just seems to keep going and going.



My Seat! 30A, A Window Seat Behind The Wing!

The seat was actually fairly large. I think it’s listed as 31’’ pitch and 17’’ width but it felt bigger. But as soon as I sat down, I could immediately tell I was going to have an issue with this seat. It seriously feels like rocks. Literally no padding at all. But on the bright side, I had plenty of space on both sides of me and almost 4-5 inches between my knees and seat in front (maybe more). I’m 5’8’’ and not skinny so use that as a reference. Each seat came with a pillow, a blanket (which is actually pretty big but I don’t get cold on planes so I gave it to someone else), and a headset (two prong, and they’re not to keep). Each seat came with an IFE system.

Not a huge system and not the most responsive in the world, my sister’s actually crashed and completely froze up a few times but it fixed itself within a few minutes. A decent collection of TV and movies were loaded into the IFE, along with some old music. I even watched part of the England vs. Croatia game! There was also a little remote style thing on the armrest. I’m not sure if you can see in this picture but each seat had a little cup holder for your drinks! Not sure if other long haul planes do this (I was in a bulkhead on United and I didn’t bother checking) but I thought it was genius that you weren’t locked in your seat during drink service. Due to delays during boarding and something else we pushed back 18 minutes after our scheduled time of 1:05 pm.



How could you not love this wingview?



Taxiing

I know, it’s not part of the review. But I thought it was pretty cool that we followed a Qatar A350-1000. A7-ANA. Takeoff was uneventful except for a large rattling/vibration that occurred on and off following rotation until about 10 seconds into the actual flight. As this was a noon flight, lunch was served quickly, starting just 20 minutes after reaching cruise. They started with a hot towelette service (or something like that). And unlike some airlines I’ve heard which have Economy hot towels relatively cool, these were actually really hot. Like they were hard to hold. Nice touch if you ask me. Lunch choices were chicken or pasta. I opted for pasta, but my dad got the chicken and he thought it was pretty good.



Lunch is served

The pasta came with a salad, a dinner roll, a cake type thing, butter, and a brie cheese type thing that I couldn’t exactly figure out. The pasta was flavorful, roll and cake were a nice touch with the cheese, the salad was kind of bland but whatever. Overall, I really enjoyed the meal. I know Lufthansa is kind of known for their food and I was not disappointed. But this is my second long haul flight so take that with a grain of salt.

After lunch, my back and pelvis were really starting to hurt from the rock hard seats. Then, I reclined. Let me just say, I’ve never had an economy seat recline this far. Not even United’s 764 Economy Plus did. Not only did the seat back recline a ton, the “cushion” (if you can call it that) you were sitting on also slid forward. Not exactly an angle flat seat but it took all the pressure off my back and made the seat very comfortable. I also slid the pillow under my pelvic bone and that further eased the problem. It actually reclined so far that I ended up with 2 and a half windows. And the issue on how to get out. Seriously. If you’re not sitting with people you know and your seat mates don’t want to go into the aisle for some reason I can see this getting very awkward. It’s difficult enough to slide past without people in the seats. First world problems, right?



Sorry, can’t get over this wingview

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Anyways, after that I had like 4 spare hours to kill before the next round of actual food (they passed by multiple times with snacks and drinks). I’m not a movie kind of guy so I just listened to music and admired the view. Slept for about 30 minutes as well.



Lavatories

Mini face reveal lol. I know I’m ugly

IMG_5914

Ah yes. Everyone’s favorite part of the flight not. Luckily with the 748’s size, bathroom area isn’t a problem. Four at the back of the aircraft, two in the center, and more up front. They were kept clean and were large enough to be comfortable (take note, 737 MAX). One thing I noticed is that the toilet cover kept falling down when you tried to put it up. Consistent through both center toilets, not sure about the ones in the back.



Second “Meal” Service

IMG_5913

About an hour and 15 minutes before landing, flight attendants started serving another hot towel and then the second round of hot food. The two options were “chicken” and “vegetarian pizza”. What you’re seeing right now is the chicken option. I’m not sure if they packed the wrong food but it sure didn’t taste like chicken, but it wasn’t bad in any way. Kind of like a pizza roll. The vegetarian option (my sister got it) was like little round pizzas topped with mushrooms and some other stuff. She didn’t like it so she gave it to me. Not bad. It’s a unique taste. At this point, I began watching the England vs. Croatia game. Not a huge soccer/football fan but it was entertaining. We began our descent into Boston not long after.

Our approach to Runway 04R took us mostly over water, not seeing land until turning base. Pretty much your standard approach. Landing on 04R was smooth but not exactly buttered. After holding and crossing through a pretty complicated taxi we pulled into our gate right on time between an Iberia A330-200 and an Emirates 777-300ER. After landing, I of course had to get a cockpit visit. The purser didn’t seem that sure of what to do with me but the F/O eagerly invited me in. There were like three other passengers in there checking out the cockpit! Very cool experience.



Overall Thoughts

An incredible flight. Lufthansa put together an amazing flight experience. Though the seats could use a little bit more padding I’m glad to say that was my only minor complaint with the flight. It’s not even bad considering the massive recline and pillow that pretty much neutralize the hard seats. The food was great and the service was great, with the flight attendants coming through the cabin almost once every hour with snacks and drinks. I’m not sure if I would’ve had a gripe with the IFE if I had actually used it. I’m not into anything on there really so I left it untouched in general. For a final score, considering that this is economy class, I’m going to give Lufthansa a 9.5/10. While I don’t like the decision on the slimline seats I’m glad Lufthansa doesn’t really sacrifice any passenger comfort. My main issue on this flight was boredom, not pain, uncomfort, or any of that. And if you’re someone who watches movies or TV, you shouldn’t really have that problem. Compared to the United flight (that was Economy Plus), I would say the hard product on United’s 764 is better as I like the 2-3-2 configuration and I had a bulkhead (not really an equal comparison but whatever) and the IFE (once again, I didn’t use it much but I poked around a little bit) was more responsive. If there’s one thing US based airlines do well it’s IFE. But the soft product on LH was superior by far. If you’re going to fly long haul economy, Lufthansa’s 748 is a pretty great way to go!

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Sounds like you had fun!

I really like the format of the review. Very clean and easy to read.

Well done 👍

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It took me almost 2 hours when I went so I HIGHLY recommend pre buying. Great trip report! Flying Lufthansa next Year so glad to hear about them.

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Thanks! It took me a while to put this one together

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Haha yeah the lines get crazy. That whole base area is just filled up with people. And thanks! Enjoy you’re flight. Which aircraft?

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Well we’re doing KLAX-EDDM so most likely the A380 which I can’t wait for!

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Must be the A380 then. You enjoy you’re flight, I’ve heard it doesn’t have the cushioning problems of the 748. Top deck?

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I think bottom because on the A380 Premium Economy is on the lower deck but in the very front of the aircraft!

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I’ll be fliyng the newish Swiss 777 as a passenger and I might make a review about that if anybody wants to see that

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Welcome to Boston! :)

How were the lines at customs? You arrived just at the start of the international arrival rush. Nothing too bad, I imagine?

That would be cool to see! Write a review if you can.

Oh, you’re flying Premium Economy. Very nice! Their PE seats look really nice.

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It would be my return flight out of lax really exited to sit in the back for once

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They weren’t awful, there were another 2 trans atlantic arrivals with us (LX from ZRH and MT from MAN if I remember correctly as well as a Hainan 787).

You’re excited to fly economy? Why??? Must be a bad joke…hehe sorry. Well anyways enjoy!

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Thanks I meant something else 😉

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You just lucked out then haha. Terminal E gets absolutely nuts after 5PM and you probably would’ve been waiting in customs for more than an hour.

Was Boston your final destination or did you connect elsewhere?

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I’m thinking this means you’re a pilot or FA but I honestly don’t know

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Boston was final. I don’t live in the area, Boston was just cheapest.

Very entertaining read! Enjoyed every bit of it!

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