Finnair – Flag Carrier of Finland Establishes itself as the Gateway between Europe and Asia

Press Room > 2018

In a conversation with Jonne Lehtioksa, the area vice president of Asia & Oceania, the commercial unit of Finnair at the ITB Asia 2018 in Singapore, he discussed with the managing editor of MICE in Asia, Julia Douglas the airlines position to connect Europe with Asia.

Finland’s largest airline Finnair flies to Helsinki, the stopover city breaking the long haul flight from Asia, with Helsinki Airport being a hub to other major European cities. The strategy of Finnair’s Europe to Asia is; on one hand to tap on the growing market of travellers in Asia through providing fast flight connections; and the other is Finnair’s position as an unrivalled competitor on its Asian routes in the Nordic market.

Lehtioksa mentioned that Asian cities such as Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore are classified as business destinations, while Bangkok is more on leisure.

Flying to an Asian destination however is not new to Finnair, the airline was the first European carrier to operate non-stop from Tokyo in 1983 and now flies to Fukuoka, Osaka and Nagoya. While China remains today a key market in Finnair’s Europe-Asia strategy. The airline offers 26 weekly flights from Helsinki to its four Chinese gateways of Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing and Hong Kong.

A member of the oneworld alliance, Finnair expands its code share partners to the non member airlines of: Aeroflot, Air China, Air France, Bangkok Airways, Belavia Belarusian Airlines, Icelander and TAP Air Portugal. Currently Finnair flies to some 18 cities in Asia through the ulitisation of its long haul fleet of A350’s with the economies of scale and fuel consumption of 30 percent less from the older aircraft.

Meanwhile Helsinki is able to benefit from these Asia flights.  The city is ranked as one of the most live able cities by the Economist Intelligence Unit with well organised public transport systems and low crime rate. Finland is also a known holiday destination and  there is a lot going at Lapland. You can experience Finnish sauna, refreshing ice swimming, nature walks, visit Santa Claus village or go hunting for the spectacular Northern Lights.

Left: Jonne Lehtioksa, Area Vice President, Asia & Oceania Commercial Unit of Finnair being interviewed by Julia Douglas, Managing Editor of MICE in Asia during the ITB Asia 2018 at the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre Singapore.