With competitive fares, Qantas’ oneworld partner Finnair is already a popular choice for Australians heading to Europe. To further add to the appeal, Finnair is currently introducing brand new Airbus A350 aircraft to its fleet.

One member recently flew on the new aircraft from Bangkok to Helsinki in Business class. They took the time to share their experience in the form of a trip review.

I have travelled this route a number of times over the years – mainly in A330, sometimes A340 and even MD-11 (back a few years now). So when I booked late last year was pleasantly surprised to see the flight would be on the new A350. I think AY has only one in operation so far. Good opportunity for a short TR

The Business class experience begins before the flight with a visit to the lounge. In Bangkok, Finnair directs passengers to the Louis Tavern lounge. This is the same lounge that is being used by Qantas Club members since the Bangkok Qantas Club was closed last year. While this lounge isn’t bad, our member preferred using the Cathay Pacific lounge. This lounge is available to oneworld elites flying on any oneworld airline out of Bangkok.

AY will direct J passengers to the Louis Tavern but as OWE I always head straight to the CX lounge (QF lounge now departed). This lounge (and the new HND lounge) are definitely the best CX lounges outside HKG.

Bangkok-Helsinki is one of the first Finnair routes to see Airbus A350 service. Having been launched in 2015, there are currently barely more than a dozen of these aircraft in service around the world. Finnair currently has just three A350s, but is expecting to take delivery of around 20 over the coming months and years.

These new long-haul aircraft possess many of the same design features as Boeing’s Dreamliner aircraft, making them more fuel-efficient, quieter and more comfortable on board.

With seats in a 1-2-1 “reverse herringbone” configuration, all Business passengers have direct aisle access. The seat reclines to become a fully-flat bed, although our member noticed that it was a bit of a squeeze when fully reclined. Each seat features a large in-flight entertainment screen with a wide selection of movies. The aircraft also has a neat feature for watching the views fly by…

The route map has the ability to zoom and rotate the view and select a left and right window view. Pretty smart – no need to raise the shades.

In-flight internet is also available for a fee, or complimentary for Finnair elite customers. Although our member gave it a test run, it seemed rather slow and was not available when flying over Chinese airspace.

Although the number of seats squeezed into Business class did not go unnoticed, our member was happy with the overall experience.

The A350 is great way to fly. Smooth flight and a very quiet cabin. Really appreciated the lower cabin pressure and improved air filtration. Consistent AY service which is usually reliable on these intercontinental flights from Asia. Improved IFE selection and larger touch screen is great.

View the full trip review HERE.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]