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Cost-cutting is slowly changing Finnair to become an overpriced low-cost airline

Cost-cutting is slowly changing Finnair to become an overpriced low-cost airline

Old Sep 4, 2021, 1:58 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2018
Programs: AY+ Platinum / FlyingBlue Gold
Posts: 832
Thumbs down Cost-cutting is slowly turning Finnair into an overpriced low-cost airline

I just wanted to sum this up because a lot has happened over the past 1 to 2 years. Only got one word for this: appalling.
Feel free to do any other suggestions for me to add to the list, I'm sure I've missed a bunch.

Reduction of food & drinks service
Maarit Kernen (Head of Inflight Food and Beverage Concept) writes she is "happy that we've been able to rethink what our customers want the food service to be now'' (source: https://www.finnair.com/fi-en/bluewi...-twist-2375532)

• Reduction of European Economy class service by now charging for tea, coffee and orange juice
• Reduction of European Economy class service by having Coca Cola Zero as the only soft drink choice for purchase
• Reduction of European Business Class service from multiple to one meal choice ''to make the flying experience more sustainable'
• Reduction of European Business Class service from hot meals to cold meals (for now a rainbow trout salad) for flights under 3 hours
• Reduction of Intercontinental Economy Class service from multiple meal choices to only one, ''to make the flying experience more sustainable''
• Reduction of Intercontinental Economy Class service by charging for alcoholic drinks on flights to Thailand
• Change from plastic cutlery to wooden cutlery and refusing to go for metal cutlery in Economy Class
Compostable and Wooden Cutlery Worse For the Environment than Plastic (LOL, so sustainable Finnair!)

Reduction of other in-flight services
• Front lavatory closed due to "secure the safety of their crew and passengers", while most other airlines have opened them up again
• Paper newspapers to digital newspaper for ''environmental reasons''

Reduction of loyalty services & recognition
• Gold members are no longer able to choose an exit row seat free of charge from January 19th 2022 onwards
• Multiple Flyertalk users have reported they are either getting no response or heavily delayed (14+ days) responses from the Gold and Platinum email addresses
• Flyertalk users reporting there are frequently getting no Platinum or Lumo recognition on their flights
• Finnair Platinum Lumo car service currently unavailable
• No priority boarding (now reinstated!)
• No more physical Finnair Plus cards
• No more Finnair Plus luggage tags

Reduction of lounge services
• Finnair Platinum Wing closed
• Finnair non-Schengen lounge closed (now reinstated!)
• Finnair Schengen & Non-Schengen lounge recently opened but with a very limited offering (mostly or only vegan options)
• No more Fazer chocolate in lounge

Reduction of airport services
• Priority Security currently only open from 4:30–8:30 a.m. to service for 'peak hours'
→ Various Flyertalk users report this is currently not even the case on some days
→ Peak hours are not just in the early morning, they are very much also later on the day

Reduction of other services
• Reduction of carry-on luggage allowance to 55 x 40 x 23cm for a carry-on bag and for a personal item 40 x 30 x 15cm.

Various other complaints
• Business Light ticket promised to be the cheaper alternative to Business Classic, with its lack of lounge access and luggage. But pricing wise it turned out to be a way to charge even more for Business Classic & Flex tickets.
• No more seat block for Business class passengers on Embraer 190 flights in Europe, while most flights are operated by these aircraft
• Extremely expensive European Business class tickets
• The points calculator has been inaccessible for months
• The upgrade availability tool has been made inactive
• The end of unlimited points transfers within Finnair Plus Family & Friends

Last but not least, some nostalgia. Do you remember the good old days of.....
• Finnair Plus' weekly and monthly points raffles
• Finnair Plus' missions
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Last edited by EuroFlash; Jan 7, 2022 at 3:47 am
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 2:14 pm
  #2  
 
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Originally Posted by EuroFlash
• Reduction of Intercontinental Economy Class service by now charging for alcoholic drinks on all flights
100% agree with your points. You can add "Depressing meal service in longhaul J" too given that it is nowhere close to what it used to be.

Alcohol hasn't been completely enhanced away yet in LH Y. All intercontinental flights still get you free beer or wine with the first meal, with the exception of Japan which has it throughout the flight. The Thailand routes went BOB in this aspect right before the pandemic. 5-6 yrs ago we got open bar for all beverages to non-fanny pack and non-North America destinations. I won't be surprised if they now go full retard a la SK where they will limit you to one can of Coke (zero ofc ) with the first meal.

Wording off AY site:

"When flying in Finnair Economy Class on long-haul routes, you will receive a generous hot meal accompanied by a selection of non-alcoholic beverages. We will also serve complimentary wine or beer with your meal if you wish. It even gets better, on most of our flights, we serve a complimentary light meal or breakfast with non-alcoholic drinks before landing."
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 2:17 pm
  #3  
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Originally Posted by miamiflyer8
100% agree with your points. You can add "Depressing meal service in longhaul J" too given that it is nowhere close to what it used to be.

Alcohol hasn't been completely enhanced away yet in LH Y. All intercontinental flights still get you free beer or wine with the first meal, with the exception of Japan which has it throughout the flight. The Thailand routes went BOB in this aspect right before the pandemic. 5-6 yrs ago we got open bar for all beverages to non-fanny pack and non-North America destinations. I won't be surprised if they now go full retard a la SK where they will limit you to one can of Coke (zero ofc ) with the first meal.

Wording off AY site:

"When flying in Finnair Economy Class on long-haul routes, you will receive a generous hot meal accompanied by a selection of non-alcoholic beverages. We will also serve complimentary wine or beer with your meal if you wish. It even gets better, on most of our flights, we serve a complimentary light meal or breakfast with non-alcoholic drinks before landing."
I missed the "We will also serve complimentary wine or beer with your meal if you wish" - I thought it had been completely enhanced away. Quickly changing that in my list of bullet points!
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 2:37 pm
  #4  
 
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Two things I hate here.

Sustainable

and

Maarit who says and rethinks that Her customers want to eat mandatory vegan.
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 2:57 pm
  #5  
 
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I'm often thinking whether the people at Finnatr, who know so much of what their customers want, ever really experienced flying and all the related services on their own. No, I don't mean one annual vacation and a couple of business trips. I mean extensive experience industry wide. I know few people in the company have, but they aren't fully in charge anyway.
As I read about the salad with rainbow trout, I'm thinking where did my rainbow trout disappear from the salad on my recent flight. Nevermind.

I feel really sorry for the select lounge and cabin crew that have to be at the forefront of this. They keep doing their best and may be among the last motivations of flying on AY flights. Because they do know what their customers want.

Don't even let me started on Norra...
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 4:42 pm
  #6  
 
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I don't know if Finnatr was a spelling mistake or not, but it is SPOT ON! I hate those planes on the ARN route, and they've been flying them even to CPH and WAW. Wow.

It's a difficult time for AY, and even more difficult than for many other airlines as AY relies so heavily on Asia, which is a graveyard and will continue to be so for an undefined period of time. Right now, AY needs to make money on European leisure travel, as that is the only segment that is somewhat active at the moment. I guess there is some business travel, too, but not nearly as much as pre-pandemic.

And in this segment, AY is not alone. Clearly they are doing their best at being as bad as everyone else in Europe. Will this be the right choice to make, and will passengers keep flying AY for whatever reason, despite all the reductions? Some cost-cutting is understandable, but right now, it's definitely going too far. If there is virtually no difference between AY, SK, DY, FR etc, then why choose AY anymore?
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 5:17 pm
  #7  
 
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I have just one advise for everyone displeased with the current state of Finnair: vote with your wallet. That's the only way to get the message through to AY management. LH, KL, AF, TK, QR and others might not be perfect airlines for all, but they are offering real alternative for AY, at least on international flights. Welcome to the dark side!
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 5:22 pm
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Originally Posted by DALtoAAL
I have just one advise for everyone displeased with the current state of Finnair: vote with your wallet. That's the only way to get the message through to AY management. LH, KL, AF, TK, QR and others might not be perfect airlines for all, but they are offering real alternative for AY, at least on international flights. Welcome to the dark side!
Here here

Eventually someone will wake up
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 7:08 pm
  #9  
 
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The Nordic Iberia indeed.
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 7:43 pm
  #10  
 
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Well, at least they still have a sauna...

Oops...nevermind.....
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Old Sep 4, 2021, 8:31 pm
  #11  
 
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I just had my first AY LH segment for long time and business class food was like microwave meal - simply disgusting. I wish I had brought my own meal onboard instead. I truly hope AY will correct this very soon, but I'm not holding my breath...
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Old Sep 5, 2021, 12:57 am
  #12  
 
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Originally Posted by on22cz
I'm often thinking whether the people at Finnatr, who know so much of what their customers want, ever really experienced flying and all the related services on their own.
I would guess they make a lot of leisure flights, thanks to the super-cheap tickets they get. They might even have gotten some cost-cutting ideas from the competition...
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Old Sep 5, 2021, 1:11 am
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by ffay005
If there is virtually no difference between AY, SK, DY, FR etc, then why choose AY anymore?
With almost no passengers to/from Asia, AY depends very much on Finnish O/D traffic. There AF, LH and KL aren't such a big threat because of the extra connection needed (although AY's limited European network and schedule increases the attractiveness of the competition). TK and QR are competitive to Asia and Africa, but AY doesn't have much flights to Asia anyway and never had flights to Africa.

The LCC's will target the European leisure market for sure, so currently AY has to position against them. DY, FR, U2, W6, etc. don't curently have much flights from Finland, but I guess at least some of them will increase their Finnish presence considerably. If AY has low enough pricing, some of these LCC's might reconsider their plans regarding the Finnish market.
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Old Sep 5, 2021, 1:34 am
  #14  
 
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Originally Posted by r2d2
The LCC's will target the European leisure market for sure, so currently AY has to position against them. DY, FR, U2, W6, etc. don't curently have much flights from Finland, but I guess at least some of them will increase their Finnish presence considerably.
DY is already back in HEL in some reduced fashion. FR is coming to HEL within two months.

As much as I hate most of the recent changes, I can see the logic (I will stop short of writing wisdom). Wait until Asia reopens and see how Finnair service bounces back improve or fails to do so.
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Old Sep 5, 2021, 1:54 am
  #15  
 
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As a few others have written here and in some other threads it is time to vote with your wallet.
I do understand that AY is going through a rough time considering how asia has been a corner stone in their strategy for years.
But selling tickets at the same prices as earlier or even increasing them while at the same time cutting services and benefits is not the way to go.
Sure, most people flying AY is doing so maybe 1-2 flights a year for their Holiday trip to Greece, for them these cuts arent really visible or note worthy.
But when you start to cut benefits and services from the people who spend the most money on tickets every year out of all your customers you are making a mistake, a big one.
I will do my flying with other airlines from now on and will keep doing so until AY gets their sh*t together again. If they dont, voi voi, then I wont return to AY.
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