The aim of this study was to contribute further to existing randomized controlled trials and meta-analyses showing advantages in the outcome of less invasive surfactant administration (LISA)-treated infants and add new aspects concerning treatment and outcome data collected in the routine clinical setting. Four hundred seven very low birth weight infants who received surfactant via either LISA or intubation methods were enrolled in the observational cross-sectional multicenter study. To compare infants in terms of surfactant administration, we used an exact matching procedure (the same gestational age, severe perinatal depression (pH < 7.10), birth weight < 10th percentile, antenatal steroid treatment, and the same gender). To check for robustness, we performed repeated matching. LISA-treated infants required significantly less mechanical ventilation during hospital stay (p < 0.001) and days with supplemental oxygen (p = 0.03). Analgesics and sedatives were used less often during the stay (p < 0.001). Infants treated with LISA had significantly lower rates of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (p = 0.003). LISA failure infants were identified as more likely to be small for gestational age and more immature. Conclusion: Our study complements former results with advantages for LISA-treated infants in mechanical ventilation and bronchopulmonary dysplasia in the clinical routine. Trial registration: DRKS00004589What is Known:• According to existing literature, LISA-treated infants seem to have some favors in terms of treatment and outcome data. Observational studies in routine clinical setting are missing.What is New:• Data of 407 VLBW infants collected in routine clinical setting showed that LISA-treated infants needed less mechanical ventilation and fewer days with supplemental oxygen and less analgesics and sedatives. A reduced risk of BPD could be showed. SGA infants seem to have higher risks of LISA failure.