Video: Fascinating Look At Finnair’s Polar Routes

Right here’s an inside take a look at a few of the distant, roundabout routings that Finnair is having to function…

Finnair’s challenges with Russian airspace

With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, many airways have been avoiding Russian airspace. Some airways have executed this voluntarily out of an abundance of warning, whereas different airways don’t have a selection, as there are sanctions in place stopping this airspace from getting used.

Arguably Finnair is in one of many roughest spots in relation to this airspace closure. Pre-pandemic, Finnair’s lengthy haul route community consisted largely of flights to & from Asia, given Helsinki’s advantageous geography for this, because the airline marketed the quickest connections to Asia.

Sadly that benefit has now was an enormous drawback, since these fast routings had been depending on having the ability to use Russian airspace. Now Finnair is having to function ridiculously roundabout flights to & from Asia, including vital journey time to all flights.

For instance, Finnair’s Helsinki to Tokyo flight now requires first flying south round Ukraine, after which flying over Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, China, and so on.

Finnair’s typical Helsinki to Tokyo routing

In the meantime Finnair’s Tokyo to Helsinki flight first flies throughout the Pacific towards Alaska, after which goes virtually straight over the North Pole, earlier than flying south towards Helsinki.

Finnair’s typical Tokyo to Helsinki routing

These completely different routings are primarily based on the winds. Eastbound flights have a tailwind, which is why Finnair nonetheless flies east, whereas westbound flights have a headwind, which is why Finnair flies “over” the earth.

Flying Finnair’s A350 over the North Pole

Gabriel Leigh with Flightradar24 flew roundtrip from Helsinki to Tokyo in Finnair enterprise class, and on the return flight had the unbelievable alternative to fly within the cockpit a lot of the means. Should you’re an aviation geek, you’ll completely love this video.

The 23 minute video covers virtually your entire flight, however it’s notably fascinating to listen to from the pilots about what it’s prefer to be in charge of a flight close to the North Pole. Admittedly flights have taken Polar routes for a very long time, so that is nothing new, however seeing what it’s like contained in the cockpit is a chance you don’t typically get.

Watching this actually makes me need to fly this Finnair routing, although ideally in summer season, when there are 24 hours of daylight on this routing. In the meantime when this was filmed it was darkish virtually your entire means, besides a quick bit of sunshine over Alaska.

An fascinating video was additionally printed concerning the outbound flight, however that is filmed extra from a passenger expertise standpoint, and doesn’t embrace any cockpit footage.

Backside line

Should you’re an avgeek and have the time, I’d extremely suggest trying out a video from inside Finnair’s cockpit on what have to be one of the vital fascinating routes in the mean time. Finnair’s Tokyo to Helsinki flight usually flies proper alongside the coast of Alaska, earlier than flying inside miles of the North Pole.

I’m placing this flight on my bucket listing for the summer season, as a result of I’d like to expertise this when it’s not darkish exterior.

Anybody else get pleasure from this as a lot as I did?

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