Lufthansa First Class to Norway

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As correctly (and quickly) guessed by readers yesterday, I am pulling out the winter coat and heading north again for summer. Each trip I take inspires the next. Last year I made it up to a respectable 71 degrees North to chill with a Polar Bear in Barrow which inspired me to go further north. Longyearbyen, Norway at 78 degrees North, is the northernmost city in the world. Why go? Because it’s there.

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Flights: “I will never fly first class”

If you’ve been reading this blog, you will notice some hypocrisy on my part. My philosophy has always been that two award trips in economy is better than one in business or first. However, award availability to Europe has been pretty dismal this summer. Ironically, the most ‘consistent’ award space I see is Lufthansa opening seats in First within two weeks of travel. Due to the last minute nature of this trip, I was able to pick and choose my dates and US departure cities from Lufthansa. I used United miles with a price tag of 67,500 one way. I was able to find availability in Economy on the way back so that priced at 30,000 for the return. Booking fees and taxes came to 200 USD.

This is my first time flying Lufthansa and also my first time flying International First on any carrier. Another first on this trip will be flying the Scandinavian carrier, SAS. They operate the OSL-LYR route. I could have used them on the MUC-OSL route as well but I decided to stay with Lufthansa.

Hotels: Club Carlson to the rescue

That set of Club Carlson promotions sure were timely. Not only do they have a nice spread of properties in Norway, they actually run the world’s northernmost full service hotel! I will be redeeming points at Radisson Blu’s throughout the trip and paying one night at a Park Inn to round out the promotion and collect 44,000 points. Norway is extremely expensive with very few major chain hotel options so having these award options was a lifesaver.

I need suggestions!

Given the last minute nature of this booking, I haven’t completed my standard level of research on activities and attractions. I don’t know too much about Oslo or Longyearbyen, but I know some of you do!

Have you visited any of these destinations? What are the must-see attractions? Any words of wisdom?


Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

About alex

Alex loves to travel and does so a lot. Logging 100,000 flight miles each year over the past 4 years, Alex uses points and miles to power his passion. Alex is continuously striving to experience the far reaches of the globe. In his day job, Alex is a Management Consultant frequently on the road advising Technology organizations. I love thinking about, reading about, and talking about all things travel. Feel free to reach me at pmmalex@gmail.com

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  1. In Oslo, the Vigeland Sculpture Park is a lovely place to walk around. The island of Bigdøy is known as Museum Island. The Norwegian Folk Museum, the Viking Ship Museum (I highly recommend this one), Thor Heyerdahl’s Kon-Tiki has a museum out there, and so is the polar expedition museum, the Fram Museum. The Norwegin Holocaust Center is also on Bigdøy but I have not visited it. Akershus fortress is down near City Hall and is interesting to walk around in. Karl Johans Gate is the many street between the Royal Palace and the Storting and continues beyond it down to the train station. There are many shops and restaurants along this street and nearby. The Holmenkollen Ski Jump & Ski Museum are interesting and have a ski jump simulation you can try. Not recommended if you have a fear of heights!
    There is much more to see & do but this is a start.
    You already know Norway is very expensive. Buying beer at the grocery store and wine & liquor at the Vinmonololet will save you some money but it’ll still be expensive.
    Enjoy!

  2. @Alex Enjoy your trip. I really liked your Barrow trip report and look forward for this trip report.

  3. I just yesterday got back from my first trip to Svalbard. 🙂 Few points.

    – The place is rather small, if you have a car, you can go everywhere in a day, and I do mean everywhere. That said, I do recommend renting a car because terrain is not the easiest to walk on for long distance.

    – Everything is very, very expensive. For best quality/quantity/price for food, I recommend visiting Barenz Bar/Pub at Radisson Blue Polar, they have their daily food offering for 129NOK and it generally is very good.

    – Coolest. Airport. Ever. (At least for me as an aviation photographer. 🙂 )

    If you have any questions about Svalbard, I’ll be happy to answer. 🙂

    ps. I have few photos from LYR at my website already, more are coming. 😉

  4. How was your stay at the Radisson Blu LYR?

    We stayed there for 3 hrs in Mar ’12, and enjoyed the Barentz pub ‘wild west’ atmosphere very much!

  5. Just came back from oslo. I really enjoyed walking around and spending some time at the opera house. I was a little surprised that some areas of oslo looked a little dodgy… The costs were just ridiculous. I mean US25 for a pizza? Really Norway… NoWay 🙂

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