Two Hours 20 in Helsinki Vantaa – Long Way Home
In this adventure:
- I’ve got to stop looking at odd routings and thinking they’re good ideas
- Sleep? What’s that concept? Off to Heathrow T3
- Lounging around Heathrow T3
- AA99 London Heathrow to Chicago O’Hare
- The Hyatt Regency O’Hare
- The Nutella Cafe
- Fooding Around Chicago
- The Canon 100D – Good for aviation photography?
- Camera shift – from EOS 6D to EOS R
- Back to O’Hare, Air France Lounge
- AY10 Chicago to Helsinki Vantaa… with Air Italy?
- Two hours and 20 in Helsinki Vantaa
- AY1335 Helsinki Vantaa to London Heathrow
- Bussing back home
- Long Way Home or short way back?
2 hours 20 in Helsinki
What was meant to be a 3 hour 20 layover was cut by an hour thanks to the delayed service out of O’Hare. So, whilst not appreciated – at least I wouldn’t need to run to the plane (although I’ve done it in 20 minutes at this airport with time to spare)
Walking off the plane, I followed the signs. It seems that Finland was happy to see us – with no arrival or transfer security checks. A wonderful thing after a long flight.
This meant a short walk from Gate 52 to the Finnair Lounge complex. But not before I stopped to get one photo which says “Welcome to Helsinki Airport”
What are Moomins? It’s a long and interesting Finnish story. I came to know of them via children’s television programme many years ago
With me capturing the picture I wanted I headed back to the Finnair Non-Schengen Lounge complex.
I was welcomed to the lounge and directed into the main lounge. Sadly, Finnair is in the process of rebuilding their Premium Lounge (which has the saunas and showers). As such – it was the ordinary lounge.
And as much as I wanted a shower the thought of going all the way into Schengen, and into the Gate 22 lounge at the other end of the airport didn’t think bearing about with a reduced layover.
That being said – the ordinary lounge is rather nicely designed, with separate zones for rest, working, eating and so forth.
Why there is a duck here… I do not know.
Whilst there wasn’t power at every seat, there was a lot dotted around – and also fitted with plugs with USB sockets to charge devices with.
I was a bit peckish coming off the plane, so I went to explore what they had in stock in the food department,
Whilst there was no hot selection, there was plenty of cold items, with salmon wraps, fresh prawns, curried vegetable wraps, salad options and so forth.
There was also alcoholic options, with a rather nice gin option…
You’ll notice that most of the tableware and glasses are plastic. It seems with the refurbishment in progress, it’s time to throw away the metal, glass and ceramics whilst the work going on. Whilst Finnair can try to claim an eco-credential (with a lot of recycling going on), it didn’t feel like it was the best use of equipment.
And also soft options… Including an App-Controlled drink dispenser.
I’m filing this under “yeahhhhh… right… “. Or as someone described it – a Nordic Solution.
I found a seat for a bit, and spent the time charging… the camera batteries. The new camera – the Canon EOS R is a hungry little beast on the power front, to put it bluntly.
The Wi-Fi was the main Helsinki Airport hotspot – and for an airport – it has very acceptable download and upload speeds.
The lounge has a shop too. With this wonderful model on display.
This model is missing more than a few bits and bobs
As for the lounge – yes, there was some sound from the works being carried out, and the service-ware was all disposable as opposed to the Marimekko tableware.
But the staff were on point, doing regular cleaning passes and ensuring the lounge was kept clean, tidy and… well. Nordic.
With my time coming to an end at the lounge, I needed to find out where my flight would be going from. Thankfully it would be going from Gate 50 – opposite the lounge. That didn’t stop me exiting the lounge, going down to Gate 34 before realising my mistake, and then tracking back to to the Gate 50 complex.
Gate 50 Complex? One best think Gate A10 complex at Heathrow Terminal 5 – in other words, the bussing gate.
At least the Gate 50 Complex has a lot more space and a coffee bar to it. In other words a little more human.
Departure FIDS for the complex
I hurried to the gate and my boarding pass was blipped so I could head aboard the rather full shuttle bus to the waiting Airbus A321.
Next: AY1335 Helsinki Vantaa to London Heathrow T3
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