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Finnair Plans To Restart Two US Routes & Will Boost Service To NYC


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With most of Europe planning to open its doors to US travelers this summer, Finnair has announced that it plans to restart two of the transatlantic routes that it operated pre-pandemic and it has confirmed that it will also be increasing its flight frequencies to New York JFK.

Finnair Restarts Two US Routes

Chicago

Monday 14 June will see Finnair restart service between Helsinki and Chicago O’Hare. Initially, the route will be operated twice a week…

AY9 HEL 16:15 – 17:25 ORD (Mon & Fri)
AY10 ORD 21:30 – 13:55+1 day HEL (Tue & Sat)

…before moving to a daily service from 2 July:

AY9 HEL 13:55 – 15:20 ORD (Daily)
AY10 ORD 17:35 – 10:20+1 day HEL (Daily)

Please note that the timings change as well as the frequencies.

Los Angeles

On 15 June, Finnair will bring back its longest US route when flight AY1 takes off for Los Angeles. Initially, the airline will operate the route just 2x/week on the following schedule…

AY1 HEL 16:25 – 17:25 LAX (Tue & Thu)
AY2 LAX 18:45 – 15:20+1 day HEL (Wed & Fri)

…but a third weekly flight will be added from Sunday 4 July leaving the schedule looking like this:

AY1 HEL 16:40 – 17:40 LAX (Tue, Thu & Sun)
AY2 LAX 19:30 – 16:05+1 day HEL (Tue, Thu & Sun)

Please note that the timings and the days on which flights are offered change as well as the frequencies.

Finnair Boosts JFK Service

Finnair currently operates a single weekly service between Helsinki and New York JFK…

AY15 HEL 17:05 – 18:45 JFK (Fri)
AY16 JFK 23:50 – 10:20+1 day HEL (Sat)

…but it plans to offer a twice-weekly service from 6 May (Saturday flights will be added), and that airlines schedules now show the JFK route operating daily from 1 July on the following schedule:

AY5 HEL 13:10 – 14:50 JFK (Daily)
AY6 JFK 19:05 – 09:55+1 day HEL (Daily)

Please note that the timings change as well as the frequencies.

Quick Thoughts

It should be noted that Finnair’s plans are contingent on the vaccine rollout in the US progressing as it is right now, on the EU sticking to its plan to allow vaccinated US travelers to visit this summer, and on the coronavirus not spring any more nasty surprises on the world between now and when the routes are scheduled to restart – if you’d like to make use of these route restarts and/or the frequency increases, make sure you’re familiar with Finnair’s coronavirus travel policy.

That word of caution aside, it’s great to see Finnair offering more services across the Atlantic. All three of the routes mentioned above are operated by Finnair’s excellent Airbus A350-900 aircraft which not only offer the widest Economy Class seats available for travel across the Atlantic (18″) but also offer one of the best Business Class cabins too.

Finnair A350 Business Class Cabin
Finnair A350 Business Class Cabin

Finnair A350 Business Class Seat
Finnair A350 Business Class Seat

I was fortunate enough to try out the A350’s Business Class cabin on one of its first-ever flights way back in 2015 and the cabin is as good now as it was then…and the onboard service is usually pretty good too. Given the choice of aircraft and airline with which to cross the Atlantic, Finnair and its A350 would be very high on my list – that fact that Finnair is part of the oneworld alliance and that its flights can be credited to the American Airlines AAdvantage program and the British Airways Executive Club is a nice added bonus.

Bottom Line

Finnair plans to restart services to Chicago and Los Angeles from the middle of June and it plans to offer a daily service between Helsinki and New York JFK from 1 July. These plans are all contingent on Europe and the US continuing on their current paths to negate the effects of the coronavirus as much as possible so let’s all hope that there are no unexpected surprises down the road…I’m pretty sure we’ve all had our fill of those!

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2 COMMENTS

    • Thank you!

      I haven’t had a chance to search for award availability yet so I hadn’t noticed the scarcity – let’s hope the airline’s revenue department reviews its miserly tendencies when it realises that it’s not going to be super-easy to fill an A350 for a while.

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