Schedule and rebooking extended

Lufthansa preparing for restart and state aid

Ready for restart: Lufthansa is preparing a larger part of its fleet (such as this Airbus 350 in Munich) for an extended flight schedule in the first half of June.
Ready for restart: Lufthansa is preparing a larger part of its fleet (such as this Airbus 350 in Munich) for an extended flight schedule in the first half of June.

The Lufthansa Group is extending its free rebooking period until the end of 2021. Starting in June, Lufthansa, Eurowings and Swiss will expand their flight schedule. Moreover, the German carrier has disclosed its subsidiaries in "tax havens" in order to obtain state aid.

The Lufthansa Group airlines now offer passengers who wish to change their travel date a one-time rebooking free of charge for the same route and the same class of travel. The new travel date must be before 31 December 2021. Previously, if a rebooking was made, the new trip had to start by 30 April 2021.

The new rule enabling clients of Lufthansa, Swiss, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines and Air Dolomiti to postpone their summer holidays from 2020 to 2021 applies to tickets booked up to and including 30 June 2020 and with a confirmed travel date up to and including 30 April 2021. Flights must be rebooked prior to the originally planned start of travel.

June schedule with 1,800 weekly flights

Starting in June, Lufthansa, Eurowings and Swiss will be offering monthly restart schedules with 1,800 weekly flights to more than 130 destinations worldwide. The repatriation schedules will thus end on 31 May. A total of 160 aircraft, twice as many as in May, will serve 106 airports in Germany and Europe including sunny destinations such as Majorca, Sylt, Rostock and Crete.

In the first half of June, the flight schedule also includes 19 long-haul destinations, 14 more than in May. In total, the three airlines will thus be offering more than 70 weekly frequencies overseas until mid-June, almost four times as many as in May. Further resumption of Lufthansa long-haul flights is planned for the second half of June as European governments are expected to lift the travel bans effective until June 15.

"Customers are asked to take the current entry and quarantine regulations of the respective destinations into account when planning their trip," declares Lufthansa. The airlines refers to "stricter hygiene and security regulations" including longer waiting times at airport security checkpoints, restricted catering services on board and the obligation to wear a mouth-nose cover on board during the entire trip.

Revealing subsidiaries in tax havens

Meanwhile, in a move to obtain state aid from the German government, Lufthansa Group published the names of all its subsidiaries based in "non-cooperative tax jurisdictions" according to a list of the European Union. After a number of German politicians had requested clarification "why Lufthansa has subsidiaries in tax havens", the company revealed the desired information pointing out that "all are companies with operational business (e.g. production of meals and logistics services for local airlines and airports) that belong to LSG Group."

The list includes Arlington Services and Sky Chefs de Panama (both based in Panama), LSG Catering Guam and LSG Lufthansa Service Guam (both based in the US territory), and in the Caribbean Inflite Holdings Cayman, GCG Virgin Islands and Goddard Catering Group (Cayman Islands). "Naturally, national and international legal and tax regulations are observed in all countries in which the Lufthansa Group operates," the company declares in a statement.

Negotiating a €9 billion financial package

Background: Deutsche Lufthansa is currently negotiating a stabilization package worth €9 billion with the German Federal Economic Stabilization Fund including a silent participation, a secured loan and possibly a stake by the German government in the company's share capital. Conditions also have to be in accordance with the EU Temporary Framework, including the waiver of future dividend payments.