Star Alliance member Lufthansa and its partner SWISS offer some very attractive economy class fares to destinations in Asia. Flights start as cheap as €297, or €80 more to include a checked bag of up to 23 kg and be fully refundable. All flights have at least one layover in either Frankfurt, Zurich, or Munich both ways. Except to Singapore, luggage is not included in the cheapest fare.
Worldwide travel restrictions are in place to slow the spread of Covid-19. We strongly recommend gathering detailed information about the travel and quarantine restrictions that apply to your desired origin and destination.
A good start is the International Air Transport Association (IATA) website. It provides current updates on a country’s immigration policies. Even better, the Covid-19 Travel Regulations Map is one of the most useful tools you can find.
These are the cheapest prices for each of the fares:
Eco Light (non-refundable):
Lufthansa’s eco flex fare includes 23 kg of luggage and can be canceled for free.
The flights have a layover in Frankfurt, Munich, or Zurich. Lufthansa will usually use an Airbus A350 while Swiss will either fly with a Boeing 777 or Airbus A330.
We expect further shakeups in the airline industry over the following months. Some services might be cancelled, aircraft changed or downgraded. The schedule we describe may very well change.
By the way, this isn’t our only economy class deal from Amsterdam:
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According to the fare rules, this offer is valid until January 25, 2021, but the airline may withdraw it earlier. You can travel throughout 2021, but there doesn’t seem to be any availability during the summer vacation. A minimum stay of six days applies – or a single night from Saturday to Sunday.
Why is booking with an airline better than with an online travel agency?
More often than not, online travel agencies offer lower fares than airlines do. We still recommend booking with the airlines directly. There are three main reasons for that:
- The Covid-19 Pandemic
During the worldwide outbreak of Covid-19, planning international travel got more and more risky because of ever-changing restrictions. In contrast to many online travel agencies, most airlines modified their terms & conditions to become more customer friendly. Rebooking conditions are eased, change fees are waived and cancellations are much easier when there is no third party involved.
Further, by adding an OTA to your plans, you increase the risk of one service provider involved going bankrupt. Now, the airline and the online travel agency involved could vanish along with your money.
- Better Customer Service
In case any problems like delays, cancellations or missed connections arise, you can communicate directly with the airline. The airlines has to take care of you because you have a contract with them.
If a travel agency issues your ticket, you may have to reach out to them first. You also depend on your OTA to forward you information like flight changes instead receiving them directly from the airline. You may get a prime exhibition of responsibility shifting rather than problem solving.
This especially applies for premium tickets. You don’t want to spend more than €1,000 to wind up with some budget OTA’s telephone hotline in case anything goes wrong.
- Baggage Fees
Economy fares not including hold luggage are more and more common. In most cases, travel agencies charge much higher baggage fees than the airlines themselves. If bags are not included in your fare, airlines are often the cheaper alternative.
The tickets are issued in booking class K. At Miles&More you’ll get 25% of the distance as status miles (50% for status holders) and 4-6 miles per spent euro. Most other programs, however, won’t give you any miles at all, except for these (based on a SWISS roundtrip to Singapore via Zurich):
- 13,550 on Air Malta
- 4,060 on ANA Mileage Club
- 3,600 on Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles
- 3,500 on SAS EuroBonus
- 3,450 on Miles & More
- 3,390 on Ethiopian ShebaMiles
- 3,390 on EgyptAir Plus
- 3,390 on United MileagePlus
Cover Picture: Ditmar Lange