Finnair Flights to Europe
We have flown Finnair flights Australia to Europe twice now.
Finnair calls Australia to Europe the Reindeer Route. Melbourne – Singapore – Helsinki and beyond, to any of the 100 destinations that Finnair flights offer in Europe.
The first leg of your journey to Singapore is co-shared out to Qantas like many European flights. Most European carriers only fly as far as Singapore or any other chosen Asian airport.
We like the Finnair option because it’s great value for money. You should be able to pick up a return ticket for around $1600-$1700 (Australian).
This service is great for the family travel. The Qantas flight out of Melbourne leaves late morning at around 11.45 am (on the present timetable). This gives you plenty of time to get to the airport and check in (living nearly 4 hours from the airport makes this the best option for us as well). No crack of dawn flights here! Melbourne is a relatively small airport and easy to navigate around. It has many shops and all different places to eat. There will definitely be something for everyone.
Finnair flights Asia transit
The 8-hour journey to Singapore puts you there at about 5.55 pm. You may have at least a 6-hour stopover at Singapore Changi Airport sometimes you might be lucky and get less, sometimes unlucky and get more! Singapore is a fabulous airport. There is so much you can do and see there. It would probably be the one airport you would not mind being stuck in for 6 hours! Check out a previous post here we have done regarding why Singapore is the world’s best airport for family travel stopovers. *
The Flight to Europe leaves Singapore at around 11.45 pm. Total flying time on this leg is around 11 hours 45 minutes. Finnair fly an A330 Airbus on this route. It has a seat configuration of 2-4-2. This is good as it allows families of 4 to get across the middle of the plane. We don’t mind four across the middle, but I find having one parent and one child sitting together easier, especially if you are trying to sleep. Only two people need to be awake and there is no climbing over everyone for the toilet break! I know 11.45pm sounds late for some families with kids, but it really is a blessing in disguise. We find a great way to get them ready for the longest part of the trip is a shower and a change into some pj’s in Singapore! By this time, the kids have had a long day and usually, they fall asleep not very long into this flight. We find Finnair serve you a meal at around the one to one and half hour mark of this flight. Most of the time the girls are fast asleep or we have not been able to keep them awake for that meal, so getting some dinner or, at least, a meal before that flight is recommended if they are really tired. We found the food to be quite nice and there was a good selection which filled us. It is the usual airline fare with a Nordic theme of meatballs, salmon etc. Kids meals were available on these flights but must be requested when you are booking the ticket. We made the mistake of forgetting to do this on the trip over. Luckily the meals are not so spicy or hot so the girls were able to have the adults meals. Unfortunately, they are both so fussy that they didn’t eat much of it but were kept from starving by my supply of muesli bars and fruit that was happily given to us by the flight crew!
Finnair then turns the lights off in the cabin so everyone can get some sleep, for around 8 hours. The lights in the cabin are then turned on again around 2 hours out of Helsinki as you are flying somewhere over Eastern Europe. Breakfast is served, you are almost there! The Finnair seats are standard size economy and pretty comfortable. They have a width of 18 inches and a seat pitch of 32 inches. Finnair starts displaying connecting flight gate numbers and times for your next flight before you land. You land at Helsinki, Vaanta airport at around 6.35 am!
Finnair flights Helsinki airport and beyond
Helsinki Vaanta is a good airport. It is nice, small and compact. It is easy to find your way around and get to your next boarding gate. Like all airports, it has the usual shops, restaurants, and bars available. If you need any assistance the Finnair desk at Helsinki is very helpful and staff are extremely friendly.
Transiting through Helsinki also gives you the chance to have a stopover and see Helsinki for a few days before continuing on to your final destination in Europe. Just recently in July 2015, they opened a direct train connection from Helsinki airport to the city center. We used this service when we had a 9-hour stop-over on our way home. It was great and very easy to use. Most connecting Finnair flights to other cities in Europe appear to leave Helsinki within 3 hours of your arrival. I can tell you that a few hours relaxing after a 12-hour flight is very much-needed before boarding again for the final leg of your journey to Australia. Finnair flights worked for our family travel needs.
* Note this post is in no way sponsored by Finnair. It is just us showing some brand loyalty to a service we have found that works well for us.