So, Lufthansa has a new livery and…

Yes, Lufthansa is rebranding this year, including a new livery being released. And after a few false starts and theories as to what it might actually be these appear to be the first legit images of the new design scheme. The official release is slated for next week.

The “no yellow” bit was long rumored and that’s now confirmed. Of course, the crane is still there since that was never going anywhere. And I guess ultimately I feel like

Oh, sorry, were you still reading? Even I got bored of this and wondering why airlines invest millions to rebrand so often. Is removing the yellow from the paint job supposed to sell more seats? Does it change the “image” of the airline to attract new customers? I know there are many people who work in marketing and branding who I’m probably pissing off with this train of thought, but I really, really just don’t get it.

Sure, it gets a whole bunch of people talking about the business. And that’s “earned” media not “paid” so it is theoretically free-ish.

And, yes, I understand that good branding can help a company while bad branding hurts. I do the bad branding part pretty darn well. But to believe that a massive investment in change like this is necessary suggests that the old branding – beloved for years – was actually bad all along and needed to go. And I really just don’t understand that.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. While it’s not overly radical or mind-blowing, I really don’t hate it. Or maybe I just like it because just about anything looks good on a 748? I like the fact that the color extends to part of the fuselage, and I like the gray (or is it supposed to be silver?) crane more than the yellow. Not sure how well the new livery will translate on the A380 though.

    1. I certainly don’t hate it. I mean, assuming I bother to generate feelings on the topic. It looks like paint on a plane. It has the logo and the airline name. Those are important bits.

      I’m more in the Doug Parker camp on the whole thing, “I have always believed [liveries] are not particularly important to the success of an airline…I have yet to find a customer who based their purchase decision on the exterior design of the airplane…it should be professional, and it should be cost efficient. But it is not a make- or-break decision for our airline.”

    2. That’s a good point. There is not much that Doug Parker says that I agree with, but that makes complete sense. For me, as someone who enjoys a bit of spotting while I travel, I think I will enjoy seeing it. Will there be a return on the major investment that we assume was made in creating this new livery? I could see why signs might point to “no”.

    3. Sure seems like it.
      Still, the livery completes the whole gestalt of how the airline expresses its entire brand. If yellow brought the brand some cheerfulness, the move to a monotone feels like a move into invisibility in an ocean of blue branded carriers.

  2. this past sunday, I flew LH to SFO from FRA on a 380. I’ve flown this route a few times on LH. But this time, the food was not as good as in the past and the A380 used on this route is starting to show its age. There was leakage from condensation and rust mark from the water drips. The screens and quality seemed dated and the entire screen system was slow (like an old smart phone).
    So I’m hoping they will start updating some of their planes.

  3. First of all I don’t like the whole ‘explorer’ ‘co-creator’ travel blogger whatever wording. Second: this is about the crane logo turning 100 years old – not Lufthansa. Lufthansa tries to avoid talking about part of it’s history. The history pre-dates WWII and for instance the iconic Junkers JU 52 is funded by a Lufthansa-affiliated organization. Lufthansa itself was (re-)founded after WWII. I wonder when Lufthansa will celebrate their 100 year anniversary.

  4. I like it. It’s classic but generic. I wish that Lufthansa would improve its business class product so there are single seats. Granted, Lufthansa is a far cry from the 2-4-2 design of the United. Five stars need to be earned before they are bestowed. I love Austrian’s business-class product.

  5. They didn’t need to change…. There was absolutely nothing old or stagnant with the version including yellow. As someone else said, this looks a lot like LOT Polish.

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