Finnair yesterday announced that it will re-start passenger flights from the UK and Ireland to Finland starting 25th January,2021.
This decision comes after Finnish traffic authority, Traficom, has allowed passenger flights from the United Kingdom and Ireland. The flights are resuming after the Finnish government suspended passenger services from the UK, Ireland and South Africa before Christmas in an effort to curb the spread of a new and more-infectious COVID-19 strain.
Strict measures in place
From 28th January,2021, onwards, Finnair, in line with the recommendation by the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare, will also start requiring passengers to present a certificate of a negative COVID-19 test result, or a certificate of a previous COVID-19 infection if they travel on any Finnair flight to Finland. However, this requirement does not apply to customers transferring at Helsinki Airport for their international connecting flights. The airline also stated that the certificate requirement is in force until further notice.
“This requirement complements our other comprehensive measures both onboard and at airports to ensure safe travel during the pandemic. This is also in line with the increasing trend of countries requiring a negative test result for entry.”said Jaakko Schildt, Chief Operating Officer, Finnair.
“Health security measures at Finnish airports have been strengthened substantially following the detection of the mutations, making it possible to effectively mitigate travel-related risks.”said Traficom via Yahoo Finance.
Finnair also stated that the new test certificate requirement does not change the procedures by the local health authorities upon arrival in Finland. The airline further states, “All passengers arriving at Helsinki Airport from abroad are directed to COVID-19 testing.”
Communication to Passengers
The flag carrier of Finland states that it communicates the new requirement to its customers in all customer communications channels. Finnair staff will check the test certificate or other certificate at check-in or at the gate, and failure to provide the required document will result in boarding being denied. Customers can then postpone their travel by contacting Finnair.
Destinations in the UK and Ireland
Finnair operates flights to 4 destinations in the UK and Ireland, according to data from Flightradar24. These destinations are:
- London Heathrow
Data shows that the airline will use a mix of Airbus A319s and Embraer E190s for its London Heathrow services, which will operate as much as twice daily. For Manchester, Edinburgh and Dublin, the airline will deploy an Embraer E190 two to three times per week.