Review: Lufthansa Economy Class Airbus A320neo

This review details Lufthansa’s ‘economy light’ class on a flight between Bucharest (OTP) and Munich (MUC) on an Airbus A320-neo.

Flying Lufthansa

A few months ago I had to travel to Munich, which provided me with the opportunity to fly with Lufthansa again.

I have traveled with Lufthansa numerous times in the past, but I haven’t flown with them since they switched from complimentary food and beverage service in economy class to a buy-on-board menu.

This presented a great opportunity for me to review Lufthansa’s intra-European economy class product once again.

With an ‘economy light’ ticket priced at only 58 euro, the Lufthansa flight from Bucharest to Munich was certainly affordable.

frankfurt airport
Lufthansa planes at Frankfurt International Airport. ©Paliparan

Economy light and economy classic

It’s important to note that there are certain limitations associated with Lufthansa’s most affordable ‘economy light’ tickets.

With an ‘economy light’ fare, you are only entitled to bring one carry-on bag on board weighing no more than 8kg on board.

Checked luggage on ‘economy light’ fares will incur an additional cost.

On intra-European routes, tickets booked in ‘economy light’ do not include any free advance seat reservations, nor can you buy a seat for a fee.

Instead, a seat will be allocated to you automatically during check-in, which opens online 23 hours before departure.

If you are not happy with your automatically assigned seat, it would require you a fee of at least €25 to change it.

In other economy class fares, seat reservation and checked luggage are included in the price.

However, for my flight to Munich, the price difference with the next category of ‘economy classic’ was over €30.

It’s indeed a complicated situation and quite different from the “old” Lufthansa days when seat assignment and checked baggage were typically included at no extra cost.

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Lufthansa economy class fares. ©Paliparan

Bucharest airport

So let’s start my actual flight review and find out how Lufthansa’s economy class measured up.

During the online check-in process the day before my flight, I was allocated window seat 20F.

I was pleased with the window seat assignment, though I’m unsure if it was due to luck or possibly my Star Alliance gold status with Turkish Airlines that may have played a role.

My Star Alliance Gold status did grant me access to the business lounges at Bucharest Airport.

Both the TAROM Business Lounge and the MasterCard Lounge at Bucharest Otopeni Airport are highly underwhelming, although visiting one of these two lounges certainly beats waiting in the overcrowded and dirty public areas of the airport.

Since the food and beverage offerings are identical in both lounges, I went for the MasterCard Lounge due to its quieter atmosphere and better views of the apron.

After a coffee or two and a sandwich, I made my way to the gate and waited for boarding to commence.

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The MasterCard Lounge at Bucharest Otopeni Airport. ©Paliparan
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The boarding gate for the Lufthansa flight to Munich. ©Paliparan

Bucharest (OTP) to Munich (MUC)
Lufthansa – Flight LH1655
– Airbus A320neo
Plane registration number: D-AINT

Economy Class – Seat 20F
Departure: 6.10am
 – Arrival: 7.15am
Flight time: 2h05m – Distance: 730 miles
Price: 58 euro

bucharest otp munich muc flight
It takes around two hours to fly between Bucharest and Munich. ©Great Circle Mapper


Priority boarding was neatly observed, with business class passengers and Star Alliance gold members being asked to board the aircraft first.

This morning’s Lufthansa flight from Bucharest to Munich was operated by an Airbus A320-neo.

Upon boarding the plane, I was greeted warmly by the flight attendants, who appeared cheerful despite the early departure hour.

The cabin of the Airbus A320-neo had the standard 3-3 seat configuration, with a moveable divider that separated the business class section from the economy section.

Seats in business class are exactly the same as in economy class, although here the middle seat will remain guaranteed empty to give you more shoulder room and privacy.

The seats featured a neutral grey-and-black colour scheme with Lufthansa logos on the headrest covers.

However, I thought that the bright yellow stripe underneath the overhead screamed Ryanair rather than giving you the impression of flying with Germany’s flagship carrier.

Perhaps this is the new direction that Lufthansa wishes to take with its buy-on-board menu, as well as charges for seat assignment and checked bags..

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The cabin of the Lufthansa Airbus A320-neo. ©Paliparan
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Boarding the Airbus A320-neo. ©Paliparan


The actual economy class seat on the Lufthansa Airbus A320-neo wasn’t too impressive.

Although the seat itself was comfortable enough for a short intra-European flight of just over two hours, I found the seat pitch to be a bit tight.

Also the lack of an adjustable headrest was a minor negative.

The only noticeable difference between the seats on the Lufthansa Airbus A320-neo and those on a European low-cost carrier were the storage pockets and the large tray table, which was big and firm enough to place a laptop on and get some work done.

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Economy class seats on the Lufthansa Airbus A320-neo. ©Paliparan
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The legroom in economy class wasn’t the most impressive. ©Paliparan


As the flight was almost fully booked, boarding took quite a while to be completed.

It was noticeably lighter outside as we pushed back from the gate and taxied to the runway.

With a slight delay, we took off into the skies surrounded by beautiful sunrise colours.

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Watching the view from the window while the other passengers board the plane. ©Paliparan
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By the time boarding was completed it was already much lighter outside. ©Paliparan
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Taxiing along the main terminal building towards the runway. ©Paliparan
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Beautiful sunrise views upon departure from Bucharest. ©Paliparan
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Lining up for departure on the runway. ©Paliparan
Take-off from Bucharest Airport. ©Paliparan
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Beautiful sunrise colours above the clouds. ©Paliparan

Buy-on-board service

As mentioned earlier in this article, Lufthansa has implemented a buy-on-board service for its intra-European flights in economy class.

Whether you are booked in ‘economy light’ or a higher fare class, Lufthansa no longer provides complimentary food or drinks on its intra-European flights.

It’s a disappointing move, especially for an airline that prides itself on being a ‘premium carrier’.

I can still vividly recall my first ever Lufthansa flights during my late teens, where I was pleasantly surprised to receive three complimentary bottles of Warsteiner beer on the relatively short journey from Dusseldorf to Rome.

Alas, those times are gone, as you now have to pay €3 for a beer or coffee, €3.50 for a soft drink or bottle of water and at least €7 for a small bottle of wine.

Some of the meal boxes did look appealing on the pictures, although you will have to pay around €10 for them.

As I already had some breakfast in the lounge, I didn’t buy anything from the buy-on-board menu.

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Lufthansa buy-on-board menu in economy class. ©Paliparan
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Soft drinks sold by Lufthansa. ©Paliparan
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Wines in the buy-on-board menu. ©Paliparan
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Beers and booze. ©Paliparan
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Coffee and snacks. ©Paliparan

Mileage earning

Another reason why I am not fond of flying with Lufthansa these days is the meagre mileage earnings.

Lufthansa’s own Miles & More program has never been the most appealing in Europe, and earning miles with other frequent flyer programs when flying with Lufthansa is even more problematic.

My Lufthansa economy light ticket was ticketed into booking class K, which won’t earn you any miles when you credit it to Aegean Airlines Miles+Bonus or Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles to name two popular Star Alliance frequent flyer programmes in Europe.

This is a big problem with all of Lufthansa’s cheapest fare buckets, as even the cheapest business class bucket (‘P’) won’t earn you any miles whatsoever even though such tickets can easily cost several thousand euros.

It’s a big reason why many frequent flyers with other Star Alliance carriers actively try to avoid Lufthansa.

turkish miles & Smiles lufthansa economy light fare earnings
I wasn’t going to earn any miles on my Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles account flying in Lufthansa’s cheapest fare classes. ©Paliparan


Although the Lufthansa economy class experience was rather lacklustre, the beautiful descent into Munich did make up for it.

The sunrise views over Bavaria were absolutely breathtaking.

The morning mist on the fields and the soft pastel sunrise colours created some amazing views from the window.

At one point you could even see some huge wind turbines piercing through the fog.

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Descending towards Munich Airport. ©Paliparan
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Misty morning over Bavaria. ©Paliparan
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The descent towards Munich turned out to be spectacular. ©Paliparan
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Morning mist over Bavaria. ©Paliparan
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Descent towards Munich. ©Paliparan
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Another fog bank over the Bavarian landscape. ©Paliparan
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Gorgeous sunrise on approach to Munich. ©Paliparan
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Misty morning view. ©Paliparan
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Wind turbines piercing the fog. ©Paliparan


The views on final descent to Munich Airport were equally superb.

We landed on time at one of the two parallel runways of Munich Airport, from where we still had to complete a longish taxi ride to our parking spot at Terminal 2 Satellite.

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On final approach towards Munich Airport. ©Paliparan
munich morning fog view
Some more fantastic views of the morning fog over the landscape around Munich. ©Paliparan
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Descending towards Munich Airport. ©Paliparan
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Flying over a motorway interchange. ©Paliparan
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Descending towards Munich Airport. ©Paliparan
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The Isar River as seen from the plane window. ©Paliparan
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Landing at Munich Airport. ©Paliparan
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Munich Airport landing. ©Paliparan
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Taxiing towards the terminal. ©Paliparan
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Taxiing across the apron towards our parking spot. ©Paliparan
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Some other Lufthansa planes at Munich Airport. ©Paliparan
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Taxiing towards our gate. ©Paliparan

Arrival at Munich Airport

Upon disembarking the plane, I walked straight into the L gates area of Terminal 2 Satellite, which was completely deserted at this early morning hour.

From here, it was still a long walk to reach immigration and the baggage reclaim area.

Exiting the airport involved navigating through numerous escalators and an automated people mover between Terminal 2 Satellite and Terminal 2 proper.

Luckily, there were no queues at passport control, and since I hadn’t checked any luggage, I could immediately walk out of the airport terminal.

munich airport lufthansa airbus a320-neo economy review
The Lufthansa Airbus A320-neo on which I had just flown from Bucharest to Munich. ©Paliparan
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The L gates of Munich Terminal 2 Satellite. ©Paliparan
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The long walk towards immigration and baggage reclaim. ©Paliparan
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One of the many sets of escalators leading to the baggage reclaim area of Terminal 2. ©Paliparan
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Escalator towards the automated people mover between Terminal 2 Satellite and Terminal 2. ©Paliparan
Some more escalators to reach baggage reclaim. ©Paliparan
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The baggage reclaim area of Munich Airport Terminal 2. ©Paliparan

Train to Munich

Terminal 2 and Terminal 1 of Munich Airport are connected by a large piazza with shops, offices, bars and hotels called Munich Airport Center (MAC).

Here, you can also find the entrance to the airport train station.

As there are often long queues at the ticket machines, it is highly advised to buy your train ticket online.

It takes around 40 minutes by train to reach Munich’s main railway station or the city centre from the airport.

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Walking towards the airport train station. ©Paliparan
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Munich Airport Center. ©Paliparan
Munich Airport Center
Munich Airport Center connects the different terminals of the airport. ©Paliparan
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The train from the airport towards the city centre of Munich. ©Paliparan


Although Lufthansa used to be one of Europe’s nicest airlines to fly with in economy class, this is unfortunately no longer the case.

On intra-European flights, there isn’t much that separates Lufthansa from low-cost airlines, as there are no complimentary food and drinks and the seat quality is similar.

When you buy the cheapest ‘economy light’ tickets, you may find little difference between Lufthansa and Ryanair, as they do not include a checked bag and your seat will be assigned randomly at online check-in.

Just like with low-cost airlines, I would therefore only consider Lufthansa if the price is competitive and the flight times are convenient for my travel plans.
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Koen works as a freelance journalist covering south-eastern Europe and is the founding father and editor-in-chief of Paliparan. As a contributor to some major Fleet Street newspapers and some lesser known publications in the Balkans, he travels thousands of miles each year for work as well as on his personal holidays. Whether it is horse riding in Kyrgyzstan’s Tian Shan mountains, exploring the backstreets of Bogotá, or sipping a glass of moschofilero in a Greek beachside taverna, Koen loves to immerse himself into the local culture, explore new places and eat and drink himself around the world.

4 thoughts on “Review: Lufthansa Economy Class Airbus A320neo

  • April 12, 2023 at 9:15 pm

    I totally agree with your thoughts on Lufthansa Koen, they used to be my favourite for criss-crossing Europe as they offered something quite a lot better than most both in business and economy. Now in both cabins, the offer nothing like they used to, economy is low-cost service for high fares and business is an utter rip off and certainly not worth the money particularly as an A3*G where so often you can’t avoid the P fares.

    Their lounges too are run down, I know they’ve recently refurbed the one in Berlin which was barely open before it looked run down and I haven’t seen it since it reopened quite recently. The LHR one is a disgrace, it has had no improvement since T2 opened now almost ten years ago. Back then it was smart with Do&Co catering. Post Covid it is now catered by the same company as cater HM Prisons – and the food is probably about the same, even the coffee tastes like left overs. So while I once chose Lufthansa now I choose almost anyone else.

    • Avatar photo
      April 14, 2023 at 8:07 am

      Same feeling entirely here.. When I take an intra-EU hop on Star Alliance carriers it’s usually LO for me, followed by TK and A3. I also rarely fly any other of the LH-group airlines these days. Haven’t flown Austrian in years and I never come around flying Swiss these days either as their fares ex-OTP are sky high and the schedule atrocious for connections.

      I’ve never visited LHR T2.. Still need to do a proper *G lounge crawl there given SQ, UA and AC are also there.

      • April 14, 2023 at 4:57 pm

        Wow, LHR T2 is missing from your experience!

        I’d rate them:

        1st – SQ & UA depending on what you want on the day. SQ food is usually better, UA have an amazing bar and the food is OK but not quite so good.

        3rd – AC – poor third at the B gates but I know some who like it.

        4th and the only A gate *A lounge so mostly short haul – LH

        I’d rate both the Plaza Premium – also A gates but no windows and Aer Lingus – next door to LH as much better so of T2 lounges, LH comes in 6/6.

        • Avatar photo
          April 14, 2023 at 7:56 pm

          Good to know! Both times I departed from LHR last year I flew with BA, trying to make good use of the last few months that I have status with QR thanks to a status match. Given that LHR-OTP flights depart from T3 (with the excellent CX & QF lounges) it was hard to justify flying Star Alliance (let alone SkyTeam..) on those travels!


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