At exactly 10.07 p.m., the Fanhansa Airbus A340-600 of Lufthansa took off from Runway 25C at Frankfurt Airport with the German national team on board as it heads for Salvador da Bahia. The aircraft went off-blocks at 9:57 p.m. Special flight LH 2014 hosts the national players, trainers and assistants of the German Football Association (DFB) as well as the delegation management and numerous media representatives. With Captain Eric Bos and Thomas Holland and Senior First Officer Oliver Dietrich in the cockpit, the jet will reach the north-eastern coast of Brazil after a flight time of 10 hours and 40 minutes. The German team will play its first match against Portugal in the country’s third-largest city on 16 June.
“The best football team is flying to the World Cup in Brazil today with the “airline for sport” and will enjoy the best 5-star experience. We are proud of our long-standing partnership with the German Football Association (DFB),” said Jens Bischof, Chief Commercial Officer of Lufthansa German Airlines, at the send-off for the team in the airport’s Lufthansa First Class Terminal. “Everyone at Lufthansa will be rooting for the German national team and we will hopefully be scheduling one of our flagships for the return flight from Rio de Janeiro on 13 July after a victory in the final”.
Oliver Bierhoff, manager of the German national football team, said “It is a long-standing tradition that our partner, Lufthansa, flies the German national team to the host country for large tournaments. Flights with Lufthansa have been the start of successful trips for the national team a number of times. We have always felt very comfortable on board, have been well taken care of and in the best of hands. And that’s how it will be again for the flight to Brazil.”
The Airbus A340-600 with registration D-AIHQ has already been fitted with the new Business Class, which provides outstanding comfort when lying and sitting. At the push of a button, seats can be converted into comfortable, fully flat beds measuring 1.98 metres in length. Passengers can also enjoy the enhanced individualised entertainment programme on 15-inch screens.
The long-haul aircraft, which is abbreviated as “Hotel-Quebec” for everyday flight operations, has eight seats in First Class, 56 seats in Business Class and 229 seats in Economy Class. The Airbus went into service in January 2007 and is one of eight Lufthansa aircraft to have swapped its familiar livery for the new “Fanhansa” logo. It means that Lufthansa has temporarily changed its name on the fuselage of some of its aircraft for the first time since commencing operations almost 60 years ago.
The in-flight service for the night flight will be similar to the Lufthansa Business Class service offered on South American routes. For the months of May and June, the menu of creative dishes on intercontinental flights from Germany has been put together by Holger Stromberg. The chef and culinary head of the German national football team since 2007 designed the menu in line with his “soul kitchen” credo.
As a starter, the players and German Football Association (DFB) passengers can choose between marinated Black Angus beef fillet with bean salad and honey au gratin Picandou (mild goat’s cheese). For the main course, veal fillet with fresh asparagus or vegetarian rigatoni in a pineapple curry broth will be served. And for afters, a selection of cheeses, rice pudding with raspberry-rhubarb compote and fresh fruit are on the menu. An extensive brunch range will be available before landing.
Lufthansa is the official carrier of the German Football Association (DFB) and, as the “airline for sport”, is involved in numerous popular sports. As well as its long-standing partnership with the German Football Association (since 2005), Lufthansa also works with FC Bayern Munich (since 2004) and Eintracht Frankfurt (since 2008). In addition, the airline is a national sponsor of the Deutsche Sporthilfe foundation and has been a partner of the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) for many years. This has traditionally involved transporting the German teams to the Olympics and, as a partner of the National Paralympic Committee Germany (DBS), to the Paralympics.
Source: Deutsche Lufthansa.