Finnair can be a great option for business class given their reasonable long haul pricing and modern business class seats. Find out all the essential information in this article.
All seat maps are by Aerolopa, the most up to date and detailed seats maps on the internet.
In this post:
The fleet consists of A319, A320, A321, E190 jet aircraft and ATR72 propeller aircraft (no business class).
Seats are standard European business class with economy seats with a middle seat blocked on most routes The front row has less legroom than on BA Club Europe, so you may be better with row 2 or behind. The seat pitch is 31″, so it’s fairly generous.
However, you can find the long haul seats, including the new Air Lounge seats at times on the following short-haul routes:
- London has double daily flights on Finnair’s A350 this summer, with the 10:20am departure (AY1332) and 6:10pm departure (AY1338) available to book. On the return, the 8:00am departure from Helsinki (AY1331) and 4:00pm departure (AY1337), will fly customers back to the UK in under three hours.
- Daily flights between Brussels and Helsinki on a mix of A330 and A350 aircraft. From Brussels, customers can book flight AY1542, departing at 11:40am, for a journey into space, with the 7:40am departure from Helsinki (AY1541) operated by a mix of long-haul jets.
- Amsterdam will have five weekly wide-body connections. Flight AY1302, departing at 11:55am to Helsinki, will benefit from an A330 service from Wednesday to Sunday, with the return from Helsinki (AY1301) available.
In business class, you get 30 minutes free except on light fares. The propeller aircraft do not have wifi, but all the Airbus short haul aircraft do have wifi. Finnair Plus Platinum and Gold members also get complimentary internet access for 30 minutes straight any time during the flight.
Food and drink
There is no choice of meal onboard, and often it can contain meat. So, if you are vegan or vegetarian, you should pre-order your meal. There is usually a starter, hot main course and a muffin or cookie for dessert. They no longer serve champagne but instead a sparkling wine, which is still pretty good. I also recommend the signature blueberry juice or for something stronger, the Finnish gin, Kyro.
Aircraft and business class seats
There are three types of seats. The new Airlounge seats are being fitted to both A330 and A350 aircraft, and the old A330 and A350 seats which are fairly similar. Some ticket types do not even allow you to choose a seat at check-in without paying, so be aware. (see ticket types below).
Air Lounge new seats
This is available on the following routes currently:
- Some London flights
- New York
- Los Angeles
- Seoul from 1 September 2023
- Osaka from 13 September
You can tell if an aircraft has the Air lounge seats by the number of seats and whether it has premium economy. Aircraft with premium economy have the Air lounge seats. The A350s with air lounge have either 30 or 43 seats in business class vs 32/46 on the older seats. There are two versions of A350, one with a second mini cabin and one with a single business class cabin. The A330 has 28 air lounge seats vs 45 older business seats.
You can also tell by the seat maps for the A350 as row 1 only has seats in the middle for the new seats. They also have a single seat in row 9 in the mini cabin, 9L.
The seats do not recline, but instead, you recline in the seat with the help of the two cushions/pillows provided. The seat has a leg rest, which can be put up and then a small insert which, when manually lifted, makes one of the largest flat sleeping areas for sleeping in business class.
You can read more about it in my reviews:
For the A350, the seats are the same all the way through the cabin, so there are no real bad seats. However, I would recommend the front row for a day flight or if noise does not bother you as the footwell is much bigger for these and does not have the metal bar that the others have. They are close to the galley and toilets so there will be some noise here. For the same reason, seat 9L also can be disturbed by the galley and is also next to where the crew store their bags. It is more private than other seats, but you may get disturbed on a night flight.
For the A330, there is only one configuration. I recommend rows 2-4 to be away from the toilets/galley and close enough to the front to get served quickly and get your first choice of main course.
A350 old seats
The A350 reverse herringbone seats recline like normal and are laid out in 1 -2-1 configuration. The form a decent flatbed for sleeping, although some people don’t like the footwell being under the TV as it is much narrower than the new seats. There is a modern entertainment systems and multi-socket and USB charging.
In terms of seat choice, the mini cabin is available on some A350s and this gives a more intimate feel and is usually quieter. However, I would not sit in the front row due to being close to the galley if you want to sleep. I would go for row 11 or 12 in the second cabin or rows 2-4 in the front cabin so you are not right by the galley, but far enough forward to be likely to get your first choice of meal.
A330 old seats
These seats are like the seats used by Iberia and Aer Lingus and have an alternating layout. However, they are in an alternating 2-2-1 and 1-2-1 configuration. With the solo window seats, the console alternates between the window and the aisle side for the window seats. I generally recommend the console on the aisle to give more privacy, save being knocked by people going past and also be able to see out of the window better. In the centre, the console alternates between sides, unlike other airlines that place the two centre consoles together for more privacy in every other row.
In terms of seat choice, row 9 and 10 of the mini cabin are quieter and more private. In the front cabin, I’d choose rows 2-4 so you are not right by the galley but far enough forward to be likely to get your first choice of meal.
Food and drink
On longer flights, such as the US and Far East, you will receive two meals. The first meal consists of a drink service with nuts followed by two starters with bread. There is no choice of starter but usually, one is vegetarian.
Here is a sample menu:
There is usually a fish dish (often trout), meat and a vegetarian option.
Then there is dessert (which tends to be very small) and/or cheese.
The drinks choice is excellent with Jpseph Perrier champagne which I rate, plus quite a few Finnish specialities that you must try, including Cloudberry dessert wine, Finnish Kyro Gin, Vodka and Whisky and some cocktails.
There is also a light meal before landing and snacks such as noodles and chocolate in the galley between meals.
Wifi is free for one hour in business class except on Light fares, on most long haul flights, and then you will need to pay. You can buy wifi at any time, including in Manage My Booking, during online check-in or onboard. Finnair Plus Platinum and Gold members also get complimentary internet access for one hour.
The amenity kit has a stylish eye mask, ear plugs and L:A Bruket lip balm and face cream. The products are good quality. You can ask for things like a toothbrush/paste, socks, shaving kits or mouthwash.
At Helsinki, there are three lounges, the Schengen business lounge, Non-Schengen business class and Non-Schengen Platinum Wing. If you are transferring from Schengen to Non-Schengen, I’d advise going to the non-Schengen lounge as it is much better. Although both lounges have been recently renovated, the Schengen lounge is often crowded and only has a limited food selection.
Helsinki Schengen business class lounge
It’s near gate 22 is open daily from 5:30 a.m to 11:30 p.m. It has a separate working area, a relaxation area with Neurosonic chairs for rejuvenation and a play area for kids. Also, two private shower suites are available, and it has wide windows with views of the airport apron.
It serves a breakfast buffet every morning until 10:30 a.m. After breakfast, they have soup and salad from a buffet with a hot main course (the main course can be vegetarian or with meat or fish) and dessert until 11:30 p.m. The menu rotates every two weeks to offer variations if you travel often.
A selection of wines, sparkling wine, beer, Finnish long drinks and non-alcoholic beverages is available throughout the day.
Non-Schengen Helsinki Finnair Business Lounge
It is near gate 52 and is open daily from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. The lounge has plenty of places to charge your phone or laptop, a buffet, a staffed bar with champagne and cocktails as well as wine and sparkling wine, beer and soft drinks that you can help yourself to. Look out for the quick exit at the right side of the lounge near the coffee machine.
Non Schengen Helsinki Platinum Wing
The Finnair Platinum Wing near gate 52 is open from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. They welcome Finnair Plus Platinum Lumo and Platinum members as well as oneworld Emerald members to Platinum Wing, when your flight is departing from the non-Schengen area.
There is a staffed bar with champagne and cocktails, showers, a sauna and a restaurant with food to order.
I recommend the reindeer burger with blue cheese and lingonberry mayo.
At Heathrow, they officially use the Cathay Pacific business class lounge, which is one of the best in T3. It has lovely showers with Bamford toiletries, a noodle bar with dim sum and noodles to order, a buffet and a staffed bar with champagne, cocktails and a wide range of wines and spirits.
You can use any of the other oneworld lounge in T3 as well, which includes British Airways, American Airlines and Qantas.
New York JFK
In New York, Finnair uses the Greenwich Lounge for oneworld sapphire and business class passengers. Showers and a work area are available. Make sure you venture through to the brew pub area and the Bridge bar, which both have food and drinks to order and tend to be quieter.
For those with Emerald status, you can use the Soho lounge. Here, there is a manned bar with cocktails, champagne and spirits. There is also wine you can help yourself to. There are modern shower rooms, work and phone booths and charging points almost everywhere. The buffet food is also pretty good.
In Paris, they use the Extime lounge, which has a decent buffet, a small drinks selection and a work area. They do have a shower, but you have to pay extra for it.
Finnair has a new light fare which does not include seat selection, free Wifi or luggage. They also do not allow free seat selection at check-in on Light tickets. You can choose your preferred seat by purchasing it in advance, and if you do not wish to do that, Finnair will choose a seat for you. Complimentary seat selection is not available during check-in for these tickets as of 1 June, regardless of the ticket purchase date. See below for oneworld status benefits.
On a Classic ticket, you can choose your preferred seat by purchasing it in advance, and if you do not wish to do that, Finnair will choose a seat for you. This means that complimentary seat selection is not available during check-in for these tickets as of 1 June, regardless of the ticket purchase date.
Finnair Plus (oneworld) members continue to have their current advance seat reservation benefit:
- Finnair Plus Silver (OW Ruby) members: You’ll get a 50% discount from advance seat reservations for Finnair flights (excluding Comfort seats and seats with extra legroom).
- Finnair Plus Gold (OW Sapphire) members: You can pre-select a seat through Manage booking for Finnair flights. This also includes the option of reserving a Comfort seat. Please note that reserving an Extra Legroom seat is not included as an option.
- Finnair Plus (OW Emerald) Platinum and Platinum Lumo members: You can pre-select a seat through Manage booking for Finnair flights free of charge. This also includes the option of reserving a Comfort seat and seats with extra legroom.
The maximum measurements for a standard-size checked bag are 90cm x 75cm x 45cm, and the maximum weight is 23kg.
oneworld Emerald members can no longer take heavy or oversized bags with them free of charge. If your bag weighs 23-32kg or exceeds the standard size of 90cm x 75xm x 45cm, you will need to pay a heavy or oversized bag charge.
- Business Light
- 1 small bag hand baggage plus 1 carry-on bag
- Total 10kg
- No checked in luggage
- Business Classic
- 1 small bag hand baggage plus 1 carry-on bag
- Total weight 10kg
- 1 checked bag at 23kg
- Business Flex
- 1 small bag of hand baggage plus 1 carry-on bag
- Total weight 10kg
- 1 checked bag at 23kg
There are a couple of exceptions:
Flights to or from Japan: 3 pc (32kg each) in Business Class (excl. Light ticket types).
Flights to or from North America: 2 pc (23kg each)Business (excl. Light ticket type).
Upgrades to Business Class
- If you purchase in advance, you get the full benefits of the Business Class.
- If you purchase at the airport, you get the Business Class experience on board, while priority services at the airport, such as lounge access, are not included. The rules of your original ticket define the baggage allowance.
You can find more information and check prices on Finnair.com