Friday, August 26, 2016

The Finnair A350 Experience

I've been accidentally flying the Finnair A350 on short routes, without knowing I'd be on it and expecting the usual A320s. But this week I was on the A350 for the first time on long-haul flight, Helsinki-Hong Kong-Helsinki.

I was on business class. My company uses the cheapest possible tickets, but I had some points that I could use to upgrade. This made it possible for me to sleep well. And work the next day.

Overall experience was quite positive: plane was on time and no major problems, feels very modern and high tech, very quiet. I particularly like the lights, the cabin colour scheme.

The entertainment system was easy to use, fast, and had a good large screen.

But I also had a few gripes:
  • The seatbelt airbag is fairly bulky on your lap.
  • To be honest, I felt a bit more cramped in the A350 seat than in the A330 seat. Though in the end it was very nice to sleep in both, so maybe that's just the initial feeling from the new herringbone arrangement.
  • Bathroom lighting was broken or configured differently; it didn't light up to become brighter when the door becomes locked.
  • Cabin personnel seemed quite busy. It always took a long time for them to visit our aisle so that I could ask for food when I woke up and so on. This might have been affected by the fact that I was on the second cabin compartment, which is shorter than the first business class compartment. The stewardesses were busy serving the larger first compartment.
  • On my shorter flights seat power was off, though it was unclear if this was actual breakage of if the cabin personnel did not yet have the adequate training to turn it on. It kinda sounded like the latter.
But overall, 1st world problems, small problems. Nice plane!

Photos (c) 2016 by Jari Arkko

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