Etihad, Lufthansa & Japan Airlines: A Trip of Firsts

Many of us dream of flying in First class just once. But the first class dream doesn’t have to remain a dream. Thanks to frequent flyer points, it’s more attainable than you may think!

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In fact, thanks to points, AFF member boomy was fortunate enough to sample First class on three different airlines on a recent trip to Europe! Etihad Airways, Lufthansa and Japan Airlines were all put to the test in what has turned out to be one of the most enthralling trip reports we’ve ever seen on AFF.

A recent trip to Europe gave me the opportunity to experience for the first time two of the best F products: EY A380 Apartments and LH First Class. I thought it will be interesting to compare between the two with the addition of JL F that will make it the ultimate “battle” between the Middle East, Europe and Asia.

Etihad was the first of the three airlines to be sampled. The airline’s First class A380 apartments have only been around for a year, but they are already proving a huge hit. In fact, as a hard product our member believes this is the best First class offering of any airline!


What can I say about the apartments? In one word – WOW! There is no doubt this is the best hard product available today. It makes all other airlines suites look completely outdated.

Topping off the Etihad First class experience, passengers receive personalised chef-prepared meals, an on-board shower and a host of other perks. But there were a couple of minor disappointments; the drinks list appeared lacking and even First passengers had to pay to use the snail-paced wifi.

Etihad flies its A380 daily from Abu Dhabi to Sydney, with Melbourne flights to commence in June. And there are numerous opportunities for those looking to book an Etihad First class seat with points, as Etihad is a partner of both Virgin Australia and American Airlines.

Next up was Lufthansa, who well and truly excelled in terms of service on the ground. Lufthansa First class benefits included access to an exclusive lounge featuring a restaurant, cigar lounge and even bedrooms. The Lufthansa lounge in Frankfurt also featured an unbelievable range of alcoholic beverages.

Other benefits included a personal limousine ride to the aircraft, and even the option to rent a Porsche before the flight!

What can I say, it was the ultimate VIP service. Lufthansa surely know how to treat their F pax on the ground.

As if the ground experience wasn’t enough, our member ended up with the entire Lufthansa First Class cabin to themself!

With more flight attendants than passengers in the pointy-end for the flight to Haneda, how does the on-board experience compare to the service on the ground? And how will Japan Airlines fare in the pointy end for the final flight back to Sydney?

This is truly a phenomenal trip report, full of luxury and exemplary First Class service. So why not pour yourself a refreshing cold beverage, and come along for the ride HERE!

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]