Lufthansa Group Implements New “Environmental Protection” Surcharges for 2025 Departures

Lufthansa A350 in SIN

The Lufthansa Group has long since stopped controlling its prices solely through ticket prices. Like many other airlines, it has invented its own fuel surcharges (national/international surcharge), which can be raised and lowered at will. As a result, the actual ticket price is increasingly obscured in the price breakdown.

At the same time, it becomes significantly easier for the airline to raise all prices at once. This was recently demonstrated when surcharges to North America were increased overnight by up to €200. This particularly impacted all Miles&More members, as the cash portion of their mileage bargains are now much more expensive than before.

Now, travellers must once again brace for rising costs. Lufthansa, Swiss, and other Lufthansa Group airlines are introducing an Environmental Cost Surcharge for all bookings from June 26, 2024. This affects flights from Europe starting January 1, 2025. The airline explains this with new environmental regulations from the European Union:

The Environmental Cost Surcharge covers regulatory-related additional costs. These arise from legal environmental requirements such as the EU’s Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) blending mandate (“ReFuelEU Aviation”), adjustments to the European Emissions Trading System (ETS) program, as well as other regulatory-related costs.

Lufthansa communication to sales partners

From 2025, airlines at European airports must always blend a certain amount of Sustainable Aviation Fuel. This amount starts at 2% in 2025, rising to 6% in 2030, 20% in 2035, and eventually 70% in 2050. Further price increases are therefore expected.

Price Increases Between €1 and €79

The amount of the surcharges has already been communicated and will initially look as follows. The variable prices depend on the flight distance and travel class:

Travel ClassShort- / Medium HaulLong-Haul
Economy class€1-5€6-12
Premium economy€9-18
Business class€1.50-7€18-36
First class€36-72

These surcharges are per flight segment and apply whenever all the following conditions are met:

  • Issuing airlines: Austrian, Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa, Swiss, Air Dolomiti
  • Flight number from: Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, Lufthansa, Swiss, Air Dolomiti, Discover Airlines, Edelweiss, Lufthansa City Airlines, Lufthansa CityLine
  • Flight operated by: Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, Lufthansa, Swiss, Air Dolomiti, Discover Airlines, Edelweiss, Lufthansa City Airlines, Lufthansa CityLine
  • Departure from: European Union, United Kingdom, Norway, or Switzerland

For instance, those booking an economy ticket from Europe to the USA via Frankfurt can expect additional costs of €7 to €17. In first class (including business feeder flights), up to €79 in surcharges may apply.

Flights with Eurowings will only be affected in exceptional cases. The low-cost carrier’s booking system does not have ticket numbers. Therefore, the new surcharges do not apply to pure Eurowings bookings. However, the prices will likely be also affected in some different way.

Booking Without the Surcharge Only Possible Today

As mentioned above, the price increase takes effect tomorrow, June 26, 2024. This means that anyone who books today will still get flights on, without paying the surcharge.

However, this does not necessarily mean getting the best deal. There will certainly be better offers for many routes by 2025. But for those who want to browse the current offers for travel in 2025, they can find them below:


If there’s one thing air travellers have been waiting for, it’s certainly higher prices. Experience has shown that such surcharges typically only go in one direction: up. Even when kerosene prices fell, fuel surcharges were not reduced but simply renamed.

The fundamental EU regulations are not the issue here. There is no question that aviation must become more sustainable. How exactly this can be implemented remains to be seen.

Translated by Ditmar

Cover Picture: Ditmar Lange

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Comments (2)

  1. Ross Kennedy says:

    We all knew that all this green stuff had to be paid for, SAF is more expensive than AvGas, all the rest is the normal cuddly double speak, which we are constantly bombarded with to make the supplier (in this case airlines) look good to the green lobby.

  2. Nicolas says:

    Many thanks for your explanatory article.

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