Practical tips for travelling with children

Travelling with family can be a lot of fun, but there is a lot to remember when planning your trip and travelling. We hope these practical tips help you prepare for your journey. You can find more questions and answers in our FAQ section.

Preparing for your trip

  • Booking seats

    We always make sure that children sit next to one of their parents during the flight. However, we can’t guarantee that the whole family is seated next to each other. If you want to ensure seats next to each other for all family members, we recommend you select and purchase your seats in advance. Please note that if you want your child under two to travel on a separate seat, you can book a ticket for an infant through our Customer Care.

  • Travel documents

    All children need a passport and other required travel documents for their journey. Required documents vary depending on the destination country. If your child is travelling alone or in the company of only one parent or guardian, some countries may require a travel consent from parents or guardians.

    Read more about travel documents
    See an example of a consent letter
  • Pre-ordering meals

    Meals are complimentary for all customers on all our intercontinental flights. Kids’ meals are available in both Business Class and Economy Class. You can order a kids’ meal for children over 2 when you book your flights, or after booking by contacting our Customer Care.

    On long-haul flights departing from Helsinki, you can upgrade your first complimentary meal. Let your children choose their favourite meal and purchase it from our pre-order selection.

    For flights within Europe, you can make the most of your family time in the air with our appetizing pre-order meals. Our Economy Class selection also includes a dedicated Kids’ meal.

    Learn more

  • Carry-on baggage

    Children’s tickets include the same baggage allowance as adults in the same travel class. However, children without a reserved seat do not have their own carry-on baggage allowance, except for a foldable pushchair and a safety seat. You can also bring enough baby milk and baby food into the cabin for the whole journey.

    More about carry-on baggage

  • Checked baggage

    Children’s tickets include the same baggage allowance as adults in the same travel class. An infant’s baggage allowance includes one piece of baggage weighing a maximum of 23 kg (50 lb) (Economy Light tickets do not include checked baggage). In addition, these allowances include a foldable pushchair and a safety seat. When travelling with an Economy Light ticket, infants and children do not have a baggage allowance, but a foldable pushchair and safety seat may be transported free of charge.

    More about baggage
  • Pushchairs

    You can bring a foldable pushchair into the cabin if it doesn’t exceed the size and weight limits for carry-on-baggage. It is then considered as part of the carry-on allowance. In this case, the pushchair is counted as one piece of carry-on baggage and in addition to it you may only bring a small personal item into the cabin (handbag or small laptop bag), which should be placed under the seat in front of you.

    Larger pushchairs are carried as checked baggage free of charge. If your pushchair can be disassembled, you should separate it into two parts. Please pack each part in plastic bags or some other form of protection. There are thin plastic bags to protect your baby’s pushchair available at the check-in desk at Helsinki Airport.

  • Extra baggage

    Sometimes when travelling with a family extra baggage may be needed.

    You can purchase extra baggage in advance
  • Packing entertainment with you

    Flying is often an exciting experience for the youngest family members. However, sometimes sitting still on the seat may not be the easiest thing for little adventurers. It is good to pack fun things to do for kids in the carry-on baggage.

    Check tips from our frequent flyers
  • Children travelling alone

    Over 12-year-old children can travel alone, younger children need an escort. We also offer an escort service for unaccompanied minors.

    Find out more
  • Check-in in advance

    For an easier start to your journey, you can do the check-in in advance from home. Advance check-in starts 36 hours before the flight departure, and you can so it online on finnair.com or with the Finnair App.

    Check in here

Getting to the airport

At the airport

  • Check-in

    You are welcome to check-in at Helsinki Airport’s Special Assistance desk. You can also use the self-service check-in kiosks at the airport.

    Read more about checking in
  • Security control

    All family members need to go through the security control at the airport. Plushies and other toys also have to pass through the security check. It is good to let the children know about this in advance. Baby food will go through a security check. Remember, to remove the food from the carry-on baggage for inspection and present it to the security officer. At Helsinki Airport Terminal 2, there is a separate security control lane for families.

  • Lounges

    We have lounges in both the Schengen and non-Schengen side of Helsinki Airport, depending on your destination. There are spaces designed especially for families and children in both our lounges. All Finnair Business Class customers and Finnair Plus Platinum Lumo, Platinum and Gold members and oneworld Emerald and Sapphire cardholders have access to Finnair Lounge free of charge. For other customers, lounge access is available for purchase during off-peak hours.

    Learn more
  • Airport services for families

    Many airports offer special services for children and families. At Helsinki Airport there are, for example, play areas for children and separate restrooms with changing stations for families with babies. You can check the services from the airports’ own websites.

  • Boarding

    We encourage you to be at the departure gate a bit before boarding starts to avoid hassle. Families with small children are often boarded among the first passengers. All family members need to show their boarding passes at the gate. Boarding is done either through a jet bridge or by bus.

During the flight

  • Baby food

    If you are travelling with a baby, we suggest bringing your own baby food with you onboard. We keep a few jars of baby food in reserve on all intercontinental flights, but availability is limited. You can take milk and baby food into the cabin in its original, unopened packaging.

  • Pushchairs

    You can bring a foldable pushchair into the cabin if it doesn’t exceed the size and weight limits for carry-on-baggage. Larger pushchairs are carried as checked baggage free of charge. At most airports there are pushchairs you can borrow to move from the check-in area to your gate.

  • Own infant seat or safety seat

    You can bring your own seat for children under 2 years, but please confirm with our Customer Care beforehand. If your child is under 2 years old and you have reserved him or her a seat on the plane, you may take an age-appropriate infant seat or infant car seat with you.

    Please be prepared to present the seat’s usage instructions when you board the aircraft, so that we can check its safety certification labelling. We cannot, however, guarantee that your infant seat will be compatible with the aircraft seat you have reserved for your child. If your infant seat does not fit into the aircraft seat or it cannot be safely secured, we will place it in an overhead locker or the hold of the aircraft.

    Infant seats must be equipped with a three or five-point harness and will be fastened to the aircraft seat facing backwards. Infant car seats must be equipped with a five-point harness and will be fastened to the aircraft seat facing forwards. Your infant seat or infant car seat must be a certified child restraint device – it must be approved for transport use in one of the following ways:

    • The seat is approved for use in motor vehicles according to UN standard ECE R44.03 or later series amendments.
    • The seat is approved for use in aircraft by a JAA authority, the Federal Aviation Administration or Transport Canada (on the basis of a national technical standard) and is marked accordingly.
    • The seat is approved for use in motor vehicles and aircraft according to Canadian standard CMVSS 213/213.1.
    • The seat is approved for use in motor vehicles and aircraft according to US Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 213, and manufactured according to this standard after 25 February 1985. US-approved child restraint devices manufactured after this date must bear the following labels in red lettering: (1) “This child restraint system conforms to all applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards”; and (2) “This restraint is certified for use in motor vehicles and aircraft”.
    • The seat is approved for use in aircraft according to the German qualification procedure for child restraint systems for use in aircraft (TÜV Doc.: TÜV/958-01/2001).
  • Baby baskets, cots and bassinets

    There are baby baskets on all Finnair intercontinental flights. In order to use a baby basket, please reserve a seat suitable for a cot/bassinet via Manage booking. If you’ve bought your flights or holiday package from a tour operator, you can purchase your seat here. Seats are chargeable.

    Our cabin crew will give you the baby basket and help you to install it after you have boarded the plane.

    If your child is under 2 years old, he or she must sit on an adult’s lap wearing a separate safety belt, or in a child restraint device fastened to the aircraft seat – this is especially important during the take-off, landing and periods of irregularity (for example, those caused by turbulence).

    The inside length of our baby baskets is 70 cm (27.5 in). The infant using the basket may not weigh more than 9 kg (20 lb). A baby basket is recommended for infants not older than 6 months.

  • Entertainment onboard

    On our intercontinental flights, our extensive in-flight entertainment services are available for your family with options for all ages. It may be a good idea to bring something fun to do for the children onboard.

    You can check tips from our frequent flyers
  • Travel comfort

    We have blankets and pillows on board our aircraft to make travelling more comfortable. Our cabin crew is happy to assist you.

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