Travel

Lufthansa Cuts Free Liquor In Long Haul Economy

In early October, we learned how Lufthansa will be eliminating free liquor in economy and premium economy on long haul flights, and will also be introducing a buy on board menu, to supplement the main meals. We now have more details of what we can expect, as this new service is being rolled out on a widespread basis in about a week.

Lufthansa adjusting long haul service

Lufthansa recently eliminated complimentary food & drinks in short haul economy. This has been replaced by a new buy on board menu, known as “Onboard Delights.” The airline is now introducing “Onboard Delights Interkont” on long haul flights (with the “Interkont” standing for “intercontinental,” in case that’s not obvious).

This new service will be available on 37 long haul routes as of December 1, 2021, including flights to North America, South America, Asia, and South Africa. This service will then be available on all long haul routes by the spring of 2022.

The most significant change is that Lufthansa will no longer offer free liquor in long haul economy or premium economy. The airline will still offer complimentary beer and wine, though.

Beyond the changes to alcohol service, what exactly should passengers expect? Much like on short haul flights, there will be a buy on board menu for snacks and drinks available for purchase between meals. This is intended to supplement the main services.

Lufthansa is adding food & drinks for purchase on long haul flights

Lufthansa’s long haul buy on board menu

Lufthansa has now published its full buy on board menu for long haul flights. How much is Lufthansa charging?

  • Standard spirits cost 6 EUR, while premium spirits cost 7 EUR
  • A 200ml bottle of Laurent-Perrier champagne costs 15 EUR
  • Snacks range from a package of Haribo gummy bears for 2 EUR, to four mini-cakes for 9.50 EUR

Lufthansa wants you to like this change

I do have to give Lufthansa credit for the extent to which it can spin a negative as a positive. In describing free liquor on long haul flights being replaced by liquor and snacks for purchase, the airline explains that:

  • This is being done “to achieve greater customer satisfaction with the food & beverage offering on long-haul routes,” and that’s done “by providing a wider selection of high-quality products”
  • “Lufthansa is responding to the diverse needs of guests when it comes to choosing food and beverages on board”
  • “Especially in the time between services, guests’ needs are very individual — instead of a standard product, they want more choice and high quality”
  • “Only the spirits, which were still given out as freebies before the pandemic, will be transferred to the chargeable range” (the tone here of suggesting that liquor is a “freebie” is just so patronizing, especially for a Skytrax 5-star airline)

Lufthansa has the spin down, eh? When the airline eliminated even free soft drinks in short haul economy, here’s how that change was described:

“Our current snack offer in Economy Class does not always meet the expectations of our guests. The new offer was developed on the basis of feedback from our customers. With the high-quality offer available for purchase, our passengers will be able to decide what they want to eat and drink on their journey.”

Customers just didn’t like free drinks! Diet Coke just tastes so much better when you have to pay for it!

Lufthansa is marketing this as a positive change

Bottom line

Lufthansa is introducing a new buy on board snack menu in economy on 37 long haul routes as of December 1, 2021, and then this will be expanded to all other routes as of the spring of 2022. This will be based on Lufthansa’s new buy on board short haul service concept.

While the airline will continue to offer the same meals as before, Lufthansa will stop offering liquor as a “freebie.”

What do you make of Lufthansa’s long haul service changes?

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