We recently visited Europe with Finnair, here's our guide to navigating through Helsinki Airport.
Helsinki Airport is modern airport with plenty of shops and places to eat, it can be super busy though and is in the process of being expanded as traffic continues to increase.
Upon arriving at Helsinki Airport you'll see a large departures and arrivals screen and a series of checkin desks.
The Finnair Priority/Business Class check in, is upstairs. You'll find the escalator and elevator to the right of the main display screen, with clear signage to the Priority check in desk. Helsinki airport as a whole has very good signage in English, Finnish, Swedish and various other languages making it is easy to navigate.
As a Schengen country, Helsinki airport is split into Schengen and non-Schengen areas. Once through check-in and immigration, you'll be in the Schengen area of the airport where you'll find a duty free shop, Finnair business class lounge and plenty of shops and places to eat.
For long haul flights, and flights to European countries outside of the Schengen Area, you'll need to transfer to the non-Schengen area of the airport.
Gates 32 - 60 are located within the non-Schengen area, continue to follow the signs and you'll reach passport control to enter the non-Schengen area.
A handy tip for Australian passport holders, don't stand at the end of the queue. Thanks to our e-chip passports we can jump ahead to the automated gates (as can Japanese, South Korean, New Zealand, Canadian, and USA passport holders). You'll see a queue forming to the left of the aisle, continue walking ahead to the automated gates, where you'll see a sign directing Australian passport holders to the automated gates.
Once through passport control, you'll walk directly into a large duty free store. This is not your last chance to purchase duty free, there is another store next to the Finnair non-Shengen business class lounge, but this is certainly the largest option.
Once through Duty Free the shopping options continue with plenty of high end shops and food options..
The non-Schengen Finnair business class lounge is located near gate 50, a small wing of departure gates.
Our flight departed from Gate 50, Gates 50A-m are in a small wing opened in 2016 to increase capacity. There are no air bridges on these gates, instead access to the aircraft is via a shuttle bus.
The shuttle bus takes a short trip to the aircraft.
With plenty of signage and clear walkways, Helsinki Airport, although busy, is easy to navigate. There are plenty of options for dining and shopping in both the Schengen and non-Schengen areas. If you're departing from the non-Schengen area we recommend transferring to this area first as it is quite a walk from the check in counters, and to avoid any possible delays at passport control. You can read our review on flying business class with Finnair here.
Our review of Finnair's A350 business class
Our review of Finnair's business class inflight food
Our review of Finnair's Helsinki Business Class Lounge
What to do in Helsinki for a stopover
Our tips for visiting Tallinn, Estonia
Transiting through Hong Kong:
Our review of the Cathay Pacific's business class
Our review of The Pier, Cathay Pacific's newest Hong Kong Lounge
Our review of the Qantas Lounge at Hong Kong International Airport