My experience in business

Old Apr 13, 19, 1:34 am
  #1  
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My experience in business

Hello everyone this is my experience and first time ever flying Finnair. I usually fly Cathay, JAL or American on these Asia routes but a short notice trip came up where I had to get to HKG from NYC.

I looked at flights from the normal carriers i would take and it was coming up to be very expensive.

I took a look at Finnair and if I sacrificed a brutal 7 hour layover in each direction then I can get business for $2600. Lie flats in an A330 and A350 so I purchased the tickets.

JFK-HEL
Arrival at JFK terminal 8 was greeted with a couple of miserable looking women. No smiles and no waving me over to the check in desk. Just a ďYESĒ.

Ok, great start. No small talk just checked my documents and told me to proceed to security. Went through and headed to the AA flagship lounge. Nice as usual up there.

Get to the gate and itís chaotic, everyone lining up and people who should be on line are. Nothing to do with Finnair, this is just the case everywhere.

Get on on board and again just unpleasant crew. No smiles, no help with coats, etc. To me i was very surprised as for a business class ticket I expected much better service.

Seat at on the A330 was ok, not the most comfortable in the sleep position. Food was lacking and was what stuck out. Bland and small portions. What shocked me was that there were absolutely no snacks, meaning like a hot snack or even a sandwich. You could have chips, nuts and chocolates. I couldnít believe this. Even on economy flights you could get a sandwich or cup of noodles.

Also during service I have never been so rushed to eat and finish. My food was taken away before I finished and I said wait and the FA looked and said, ďoh youíre not done? ď at that point I said forget it and take it.

Landing in HEL had a 7 hour layover, I contemplated staying in the airport but said the hell with it.

Walked out and followed the signs for the train. Very easy and was 5 euro I believe to get me to the city center. Walked around a bit and took in the sights. Killed some time and then made it back in plenty of time to catch my next flight to HKG. So those looking to see if you can do this yes itís very easy.

Security was very fast in HEL and if you have a Amex platinum there is a special priority security section upstairs. Very cool as I have never seen this.

HEL-HKG
This time the boarding process puts you in a section after they check your documents. Boarding was fast and smooth. Again the crew were not pleasant. I thought Finland was the happiest place on earth?

Seat was much nicer just like the new aa or cx J. Food again was mediocre and again no snacks for a 10 hour flight. This to me is unacceptable for a business ticket.

IFE and Wi-Fi decent on board the a350.

Also on every Finnair flight they are extremely strict about having anything on your armrest. Even a cell phone. One of the FAs on HEL-JFK was very aggressive about it.

coming back HKG-HEL-JFK was pretty much the same.

I would say for $2600 thatís what I would cost for a cx premium economy seat. So would you choose a lie flat seat with a 7 hour layover or a recliner seat non stop flight with snacks. Thatís what it comes down too. If I had to book on short notice again I would most likely do Finnair again but make sure I bring something on board for a snack.

I hope this can help guide someone looking at these flights.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 2:16 am
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Interesting to read "outsider's" experience. 2 things surprised me:

1. JFK staff - I actually found them being one of the best AY's outstation staff I have encountered. Always positive, full of smiles and happy to help. What a contrast to the majority of other outstations. The lady serving priority check-in desk probably made most of the impression, but few other persons around were also helpful. Reading your report, I hope they didn't make any changes in staffing there.
2. HEL-HKG food - usually meals loaded at HEL are of a really nice taste, even though, the presentation may be lacking in many cases. You must have been unlucky or maybe influenced by the generally poor experience you had come through as of stepping into JFK terminal.

About the snacks - the menu usually reads so that there are some sandwiches available. Nuts etc. are the snacks you can see and freely pick-up, but there should be more on request. Noodles and other snacks in Y are paid, but I believe they would serve you one of those if you asked (especially if for some reason on neither of your flights the J snacks were loaded).
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Old Apr 13, 19, 8:20 am
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Originally Posted by wireless_999 View Post
[his time the boarding process puts you in a section after they check your documents. Boarding was fast and smooth. Again the crew were not pleasant. I thought Finland was the happiest place on earth.
In Finland no one ever talks. That's how everyone can stay in their happy place

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Old Apr 13, 19, 9:29 am
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It might be the OP experience with food was not up to his expectations because he had two night flights. I noticed a bug difference between night and day flights in terms of food quantity and service.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 9:39 am
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Originally Posted by fransknorge View Post
It might be the OP experience with food was not up to his expectations because he had two night flights. I noticed a bug difference between night and day flights in terms of food quantity and service.
I don't consider JFK-HEL or HEL-JFK a night flight, do you? Also, if the layover was 7h then that means HEL-HKG wasn't a night flight, either.

Edited to add - apologies but I've assumed you mean redeye and not "landing the next day". Perhaps I'm mistaken.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 10:05 am
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The outboud would be night flight.
I did not notice the OP also commented, albeit very briefly, on the inbound which would be a day flight.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 10:20 am
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I had a surprise trip on Finnair in that Cathay rerouted me on a HKG-LHR-CPH route to a HKG-HEL-CPH flight with Finnair. I was not expecting to visit Finland when I arrived at the airport but I also got in to CPH 3 hours earlier so I was happy.

Anyway, I enjoyed the flight but was really thirsty and the only way I could get water was in those little Merimekko glasses. I must have gone through five of them. I also experienced the “cheese grater” footwell on the A350. The service and food were fine. Nothing memorable but no issues either.

All in all, not a bad way to cross the Eurasian mega continent. I would choose this again over a Cathay flight that included a 3 hr longer layover in LHR.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 1:49 pm
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I've done ORD-BKK roundtrips a few times in Finnair biz class and yes it doesn't measure up to JL or CX but is better than AA. It's also a few thousand cheaper than JL or CX so I view it money well spent. Yes the long layover at HEL is annoying but I usually lie down for a few hours in the back of the lounge and take a sauna and have a bite. Well worth the money if doing it out of ones own pocket.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 1:58 pm
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Typical northern-European hospitality service. Everyone is always bothered if they have to serve you!
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Old Apr 13, 19, 2:13 pm
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Last edited by Bdsm; Jul 11, 19 at 4:18 pm
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Old Apr 13, 19, 9:00 pm
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One of the main reasons I like flying with AY is the attitude of the cabin crew - they simply do what they expect to do, an sometimes they are mega friendly too.

Food is a a hit and miss thing on AY - but itīs rarely great. Snacks should be available the whole flight if you ask for them (or did they really enhanced the noodles? - long time since I was asking for them).
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Old Apr 13, 19, 9:24 pm
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I am sorry for your rather bad experience. Scandinavia is really one of the happiest places so the staff is. Unfortunately even I do have bad experiences (more with SAS) when I found the staff to be rather arrogant. Just get over this because when you meet the right people the experience will be lifetime!
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Old Apr 13, 19, 10:15 pm
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Originally Posted by intuition View Post
In Finland no one ever talks. That's how everyone can stay in their happy place

For second year in a row, UN rank Finland the Happiest Nation. Finnair knows the Finnish secret: Limiting human interaction increases personal happiness :P
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Old Apr 13, 19, 11:40 pm
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Worth remembering that Finland isnít a Scandinavian country
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Old Apr 15, 19, 6:35 am
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Great responses.

Again the main reason for taking this was the cost. At less than $3k for a lie flat on both segments it made sense.

But $3k is not a small amount of money. I usually fly cx, aa and a couple of times Jal so I was just comparing.

for $3k I would think the menu offerings would be more and the staff more pleasant.

The lounge people if i didnt mention were pretty nice at HEL. It was annoying that I would have to go to the other terminal to get a shower but other than that it was a sacrifice to wait 7 hours coming back from HK to NY that was worth it if you factor that a cx flight non stop would be $5k more.

I guess Iím spoiled by cx service, friendly crew and menu. I like many others I believe would stay longer on the flight because itís so good. 😀

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