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Finnair's Route Network 2000

Wed Oct 06, 1999 4:58 am

Some bad news today...
Finnair, in a press release, revealed that flights to San Francisco, Toronto, and Osaka will be discontinued next year in favor of increased frequencies on the Beijing and Bangkok/Singapore routes. This also makes one MD-11 (OH-LGD specifically) available for charter traffic (this must have been the reason behind changing it to an all economy class layout) which will "increase it's competiveness in leisure traffic."

I for one will say it's a shame that theFinnair won't be flying to SFO, KIX, or YYZ anymore. Maybe if we lobby them they'll change their minds   They say that there will be scheduled alternatives for these routes with oneworld partners. But this totally screwed up my frequent flyer plans... now it will cost at least 180,000 points to fly to HEL from SFO instead of 120,000.  

Moi,
Kai
 
Ilyushin96M
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Wed Oct 06, 1999 7:25 am

Too bad Finnair is taking SFO and the other cities off its routes! What is the reason? Seems they'd do a pretty good business flying pax in and out of SFO, at least. It's a big shame for you, losing all those frequent flyer points. What OneWorld carriers could you fly instead?
 
Guest

RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Wed Oct 06, 1999 7:38 am

I was speaking with a friend quite extensively... we figured that oneworld had it's plans for Finnair. Mostly as a feeder airline from Europe to Southern Asia (destinations like Beijing, Bangkok and Singapore) to connect with CX or QF.

For me there are two options: fly AA to JFK and connect onto a Finnair MD-11 there, or fly BA to London and take Finnair from LHR. Sucks, but I guess I have to live with it. Plus, now I can't spot Finnair planes at SFO anymore... big bummer  

Moi,
Kai
 
Ilyushin96M
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Wed Oct 06, 1999 8:02 am

Yeah, that is a major bummer. Do you find Finnair to be better than British Airways flying out of SFO? I mean the service, of course. Nothing can beat a direct flight, no matter what. Shame you'll now have to deal with a layover. Aeroflot opened up SFO - LED route this summer...too bad I don't live in SFO anymore! They use a 767-300 on the route. Finnair seems to be a well-run, professional airline. I flew with them from St. Petersburg, Russia to London and back in 1995, DC-9 out of LED, MD-83 out of Helsinki, then A300B4 out of Stansted to Helsinki (a red-eye flight which left at 00:30 am, arriving at 05:30 am), then the final DC-9 back to LED. The return layover at Vantaa was hellishly long, but I was much impressed with Finnair's clean planes and excellent service. Beat the heck out of SAS! What are the OneWorld partners? I'm interested to know what airlines belong to that. Cheers! Britt
 
Hagi
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Ilyushin96M

Thu Oct 07, 1999 3:52 am

I96M: Other OW members are AA, BA, Qantas, Iberia, Canadian Airlines and Cathay Pacific. LAN Chile is to join next year.

Yeah, too bad direct service has to be cut down because of alliance politics. A few days ago in an interview by a major Finnish newspaper some recently-appointed Finnair manager told that the company will keep an independent policy and "must stand on its own" despite alliances. Well duh... I knew this would happen with OW. Small wonder they didn't execute the HEL-JFK route as well.

Now I'm sure Singapore traffic will need additional flights, and if it wasn't for this decision they could've gone for a fifth MD-11 to manage that. Or, they could've sized down the "high-density" leisure routes or maybe get some more 757s for them as those routes, if any, make little profit (except for the travel agencies the airline owns).

Anyway, this sure won't help Oneworld gather customers from the West Coas of US, Canada and Japan (AY was the only airline in Northern Europe to fly to KIX) to North Europe, Baltics and parts of Russia. But then again, this region may not be such an important market area globally, from an alliance's point of view. Hope we'll at least see some other (OW) airlines initiating _direct_ service to Helsinki. I wonder when was the last time a US or Asian airline flew here... was it Pan Am? ;-)

- Hagi@HEL
 
Antti
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Thu Oct 07, 1999 4:29 am

I agree, it´s a shame Finnair won´t fly to SFO and YYZ next summer. I was actually looking forward flying to Toronto next year and now it will be more difficult and time consuming.
In my opinion Finnair´s flight to JFK is the most important route they have. They got so much people flying to US from Russia that it would be ridicilous to stop it.
I believe Delta was the last US carrier flying here. I photographed their L-1011s and A-310s when they flew here. I can´t remember when they stopped flying, maybe 4 years ago?

Antti
 
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RE: Finnair's Routes 2000

Thu Oct 07, 1999 6:04 am

The bright side of Finnair concentrating their Far East ops is of course the prospect of increasing frequencies which would attract frequent flyers. That would also give a potential for building up more feeder flights from Scandinavia, Germany, British Isles and Spain, which are countries benefitting most of Helsinki's location on the Great Circle to Far East.

The really dark side of this is that Finnair, only one month after joining *oneworld*, has to give in to British Airways who declares financial emergency on their long-haul routes. In fact British Airways and the rest of the alliance now shut down Finnair's flights as the ones of a competitor, not a partner.

Jan-Erik Andelin
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LH423
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Thu Oct 07, 1999 11:19 am

Could this possibly have anything to do with the yield loss on the North Atlantic routes. British Airways is complaining about losing yields yet has added an additional 747-400 to the Los Angeles route. If I were an airline losing yield I'd do exactly what Finnair did, and cut un-profitable routes. And who knows, maybe they'll start up the route again.
« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
 
Hagi
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Thu Oct 07, 1999 4:24 pm

Antti, you have pictures of DL L1011s at HEL? Could you upload 'em here?

Still about the to-be-lost routes: I guess they must've been profitable enough. I mean, sure, YYZ and SFO were seasonal, but I guess that was partly because the airline needed the widebody capacity during wintertime to get the hordes of people from the cold to the Canaries. But considering Helsinki was one of just two Scandinavian cities to have service to the West Coast, Canada and Japan and a primary hub for passengers from the Baltic countries and NE Russia, these long hauls must've brought big money to the company. After all, Finnair did fly to either LAX, SEA or SFO since the eighties, during the hard recession etc.. But well, alliances are all about _avoiding competition_ and _streamlining operations_, no matter how cynical that may sound.

Additional flights to Singapore and China is of course a good thing. Maybe it _is_ better to concentrate on key routes and do _that_ better: i.e. to have more frequent service. I admit it must be hard to establish a market position when you fly somewhere only two times a week half the year. And as LH423 said, maybe we'll see a re-introduction of similar routes by some airline.

Anyway, too bad we're very much at Finnair's mercy here in Finland. They still have a very dominating market position; a de facto monopoly in some of the trunk routes (with alliance/codeshare partners) such as London, Brussels, Zurich, New York... I'd just love to see that change!

- Hagi, EFHK
 
SVG
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Fri Oct 08, 1999 1:59 am

It really strange that a small (and not very rich) country like Finland has such a large national carrier. I've heard that service is great on Finnair flights and I hope I'll have a chance to try the airline. It's sad that Braathens and Finnair no longer cooprate. Together the could have become a stronge competitor to SAS.....
 
Hagi
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Fri Oct 08, 1999 5:01 am

Finnair isn't that large, really. Other Nordic countries, each one small, have SAS which is actually one of the largest in Europe, plus they have other domestic carriers. Switzerland is a small country but Swissair is a decent-sized airline. But true, Finnair has become very succesful for an airline originating from a small, remote corner of Europe. I guess they have done so by paying attention to quality. Finding a market niche (the Gateway concept; basically Helsinki as an East-West hub) has also helped a lot.

And actually, they _are_ competing hard with SAS, at least in Sweden. They have Arlanda as a sort of mini hub with direct daily flights to several major European cities. No such conquest to Norwegian or Danish heartland yet, but just you wait!   Now of course SAS took over Air Botnia, thus creating domestic competition for Finnair. But hey, that's only healthy!
 
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Fri Oct 08, 1999 6:07 am

Finnish business daily Kauppalehti in Helsinki today had the news that HEL-JFK will be cut from daily to DX2, and the equipment will serve BKK that day instead.

Finnair will also skip intermediate stops in Stockholm on their flights HEL-TXL (Berlin) and HEL-MUC, with A319 predominantly as equipment.

Jan-Erik Andelin
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Antti
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Hagi!

Fri Oct 08, 1999 10:47 pm

Sorry, don´t have a scanner nearby. I photographed at least 3 L1011s and 2 A310s. I tried to look for them but could´t find at the moment as my apartment is a mess because I moved a little time ago...

Antti
 
Hagi
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RE: Hagi!

Sat Oct 09, 1999 12:41 am

Too bad you can't send your photos here... Well, do you or anyone else know what other US/Asian/Any far-away country's carriers used to fly to Helsinki? (I wasn't that interested in commercial aviation back then when you could actully see some widebodies at HEL other than Finnair's.) I think at least Pan Am, and didn't Thai, too...? Anyway, that must've had some kind of impact on ticket prices.

Btw: I heard today that a low-fares airline is starting flights between Helsinki and London. The guy who told this couldn't tell which one, but apparently not Ryanair, Go or Virgin Express, but some _Dutch_ carrier. Anyone heard about this?! He said a return ticket is supposed to cost like 1000 FIM, which would make _me_ a customer promptly!
 
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RE: HEL Low-fare

Sat Oct 09, 1999 3:56 am

It's KLM UK that plan flights from Stansted to Helsinki, apparently on F100.

Rumours are around that KLM and Braathens will set up a joint venture or a joint Scandinavian airline. BU, owned by KLM to 30 %, is reluctant and waiting for the outcome of the KL/AZ merger.

Jan-Erik Andelin
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md80forum
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RE: HEL Low-fare

Sat Oct 09, 1999 3:56 am

It's KLM UK that plan flights from Stansted to Helsinki, apparently on F100.

Rumours are around that KLM and Braathens will set up a joint venture or a joint Scandinavian airline. BU, owned by KLM to 30 %, is reluctant and waiting for the outcome of the KL/AZ merger.

Jan-Erik Andelin
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gardermoen
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RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Sat Oct 09, 1999 11:51 am

In the early 90s,Thai did fly Bangkok-Helsinki-Munich I think twice a week. But it only lasted about a year.
 
Guest

RE: Finnair's Route Network 2000

Sat Oct 09, 1999 2:39 pm

Cathay Pacific did operate into Helsinki for a very short time during the Gulf War. This was only a tech. stop on it's London service that used to stop in Bahrain.

Cheers

 

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