Finnair is celebrating 30 years of direct flights from Helsinki to Manchester, having launched the first service on 27 March, 1994.

Finnair’s flights provide an important connection between the North of England and markets in Asia, allowing important business routes to thrive and giving holidaymakers access to far flung destinations.

Since the first direct flight 30 years ago, Finnair has continued to strengthen and expand its Manchester-Helsinki service. It will increase capacity to 12 weekly flights this summer and to double daily flights by winter 2024.

Finnair flies from its Helsinki hub to the most important trade cities in Asia such as Singapore, Hong Kong and Tokyo.

From May, the carrier – which celebrated its centenary in 2023 – will resume flights to Nagoya in Japan with a twice-weekly service for the coming summer season.

The airline also connects Manchester to its partner city Osaka, dubbed the ‘Manchester of the East’. The cities are partnering for the upcoming World Expo 2025 in Osaka, running from April to October next year.

Anssi Partanen, Finnair Market Director Europe, said: “Finnair is proud to have flown direct to the vibrant city of Manchester since 1994 – and indirectly via London from the 1970s.

“To celebrate this route now is even more timely as we are about to add capacity for the summer and to go back to double-daily from next winter.

“In May, the resumption of flights to Nagoya will also allow for increased bilateral ties between Manchester and other Japanese cities alongside Osaka, where we will fly five times per week this coming summer season.”

Finnair launched its direct Manchester-Helsinki flights in a year of cultural milestones. In 1994, Britpop band Oasis released their first album ‘Definitely Maybe’, the first episode of hit US TV show ‘Friends’ premiered and Manchester United won the FA cup.

Partanen added: “We are pleased to celebrate such a milestone in Manchester, and we hope to serve Mancunians for many years to come!”

Stephen Turner, Commercial Director at Manchester Airport, said: “We are proud to serve the North, connecting people with the places they want to fly to. Finnair is a highly valued partner, providing a link to the city of Helsinki and further afield. We are delighted to join them in celebrating three decades of flights from Manchester.”

Those looking to visit Finland can enjoy return fares from Manchester to Helsinki from £189 in Economy Class and £553 in Business Class, including all taxes and charges.


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