Review of Finnair flight London Helsinki in Economy

Airline Finnair
Flight AY996
Class Economy
Seat 43A
Aircraft Airbus A350-900
Flight time 02:55
Take-off 16 Oct 15, 19:35
Arrival at 17 Oct 15, 00:30
AY   #62 out of 113 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 102 reviews
Jett Tyler
By 4087
Published on 7th October 2015
Finnair is an airline that is new to me. I wasn't really planning on doing this trip. I booked it as it was the A350 and I got a good deal for it.

For this trip: I paid about £150 for AY996 on October 16th for the A350 and AY995 on October 17th on A320. I paid £13 more for reserved seating on both these flights: Seat 43A on the A350 and 9F on the A320.

My trips to Amsterdam and Cologne, plus my Madeira holiday came and went (see previous reviews). I went back to college in September.

October comes around. Finnair got their Airbus A350-900 (OH-LWA) about 2 weeks before my flight with them. I was ecstatic!

On October 16th I got to London Heathrow just before 18:00pm for my 19:35pm flight. I wasn't checking in hold luggage and I checked in online, so I had plenty of time. This is something I normally do always.

I got through the airport security within a quick 10-15 minutes. I arrived just after the peak time rush.

photo My Flight on Board

I found some window areas around Terminal 3 and got some pictures around the airport. Including the just arrived AY995 operated by the Airbus A350 I was to be flying on in just over an hour!

When boarding finally commenced, I waited until nearly everyone was on the aircraft so I could have a nice look around as well as having a more relaxed boarding. There was a confusing moment between me and one of the cabin stewardesses as I asked about my seat which I recorded on the video.

photo A350

I settled into Sear 43A, my home for the next 2 hour 22 minute flight. The legroom was great, the seat felt nice. I also thought it was cool I was going to have on a short haul flight a Personal In-flight Entertainment on a short-haul flight.

photo A350 Map

We departed London Heathrow on time. We began our flight to Helsinki. The flight overall was pretty calm.

Food service began about 30 minutes into the flight as we past the Belgium/Holland/German shorelines over the North Sea.

The airline offered complimentary Tea and Coffee, there was a free blueberry cake offered to each PAX, I think this is a standard on long-haul Finnair flights (don't quote me) and I paid 7EUR (£5) for a Screwdriver (Orange Juice and Vodka). This was a nice culinary serving for the 2 1/2 hour flight. I couldn't afford champaign but wanted an alcoholic beverage for this flight.

photo A350 Screwdriverphoto A350 snack

After a while the service for food/drink ended and I needed the onboard W/C. I used this oppertunity to get my camera and after I was done and dusted- I did some filming and photography from and around the rear Galley.

photo DSCF0037

We began our descent into Helsinki Vantaa just after we past the Danish coast over the Gulf of Finland.

We arrived at 00:20am Finland time (They are 2 hours ahead of the UK). I got off the plane last. I went via the flight deck…

photo DSCF0048photo DSCF0049

After departing the plane, I spent just over 5 hours (00:20am - 05:40am) airside at Helsinki: charging my equipment, going over my images and picturing/filming the nearly deserted terminal. Airside was slightly busy than what I expected because it turns out that the 23:40pm flight to Hong Kong (operated by a OneWorld livery Finnair A340) was delayed until 08:35am the next day. I had to quietly sneak around c.25 people who probably came here on a connecting flight and didn't know about the reschedule until they arrived.

Airbus A350 Flight Review Video:

Airside Tour of Helsinki Vantaa Terminal 2:
See more



Cabin crew10.0

London - LHR


Helsinki - HEL



I thought London Heathrow Terminal 3 was quite a nice building once airside, some places for descent views, which are probably better during the day- not at night or during the evening. Just as good as Terminal 4 & Terminal 5.

I thought the Airbus A350-900 was a brilliant aircraft having flown it. Finnair as an airline was absolutely brilliant, very friendly staff. I am pleased they offer free Tea or Coffee at least, don't mind paying for the extras.

Helsinki airport to stay for the overnighter was a good choice, only one bar was open- but it was quite and I enjoyed speaking to the Barista who was on that night. Enjoyed exploring the Airside of the Terminal- More airports need the charging points that HEL offers.



  • Comment 148852 by
    Benoit75008 2869 Comments

    Thanks for this report,

    This airbus seem to be nice, like B787.
    Always interesting to test until it'll be used for long haul flights

  • Comment 148861 by
    ashleyyau 165 Comments

    Thanks for sharing this flight report!
    The plane and the IFE system look so nice!
    Form your pictures I guess this plane is 100% loaded, right? Many people want to try the new plane :D

    Finnair will start using this A350 for flights to Asia next month and it will be interesting to see how this plane perform in long haul flights.

    • Comment 327185 by
      Jett Tyler AUTHOR 91 Comments

      The flight must have had about 90% full capacity. I noticed some people watching films, but I stuck with the map and tail cam for my flight. I will probably fly an A350 in years to come for Long-Haul, but at least I can say I did a special flight on it :)

    • Comment 327184 by
      Jett Tyler AUTHOR 91 Comments

      Thanks for the info. Yes I think this was a good money well spent. The return flight on the A320 I did made that £173 even more well spent :D you shall find out when its up

  • Comment 148867 by
    KL651 3458 Comments

    Thanks for this FR.

    The fare paid is indeed a good one.

    I think the blueberry cake you received are part of the special service for A350 flights, because otherwise, all snacks have to be paid for.

  • Comment 148872 by
    pititom 8497 Comments

    Another Tyler :)

    Finnair is definitely successful with this aircraft on this website ;)

    Indeed, it's a nice aircraft and this route offers a nice opportunity.

    Too bad you couldn't afford Champagne, the passenger from the last row didn't seem to be so reasonnable ^^

    Thanks for sharing !

    • Comment 327189 by
      Jett Tyler AUTHOR 91 Comments

      Thanks mate :)

      Yeah, I needed the money as I camped airside instead of a hotel. It was worth doing!

      You should see what I got on my return flight- I will be posting that A320 trip later tonight once the video is uploaded to YT

  • Comment 148884 by
    Chibcha 406 Comments

    Thanks for sharing, it's always exciting to have a first time on a new type and airline!

  • Comment 151884 by
    jetsetpanda 2156 Comments

    So just like you the first time that I flew AY it was on the new A350. What a way to break into a new airline. ;)

    Looks like you got a decent fare for this quick trip.

    The legroom was great, the seat felt nice. I also thought it was cool I was going to have on a short haul flight a Personal In-flight Entertainment on a short-haul flight.
    - It is always a treat to fly a wide body on an intra-European flight, regardless of the flying time.

    I got off the plane last. I went via the flight deck...
    - It pays to get off last. ;)

    After departing the plane, I spent just over 5 hours (00:20am - 05:40am) airside at Helsinki
    - For 5 hours I probably would have done the same. Besides, I've read that HEL airport is very sleep friendly for stranded passengers.

    Thanks for sharing your experience on AY's A350 and your enthusiasm is evident throughout your report. It is a gorgeous plane and your nice pics complement this perfectly.

    • Comment 331772 by
      Jett Tyler AUTHOR 91 Comments

      Thank you :) always happy to read your comments on my reports. Yeah, I did a few things different on this trip. I normally try and be last on-board and last off. HEL is amazing for camping overnight in. I did a quick video tour. 20 odd other people were stranded airside as their A340 to HKG was delayed by 9 hours.


Login to post a comment.