Exploring Finnair's 100-year history: exciting school trips to the hangar and the Aviation Museum
In honor of Finnair's 100th anniversary, we organised visits to our aircraft hangar and the Aviation Museum for primary school students in April and May. During the visits, a total of 1,700 students from 50 different schools in over twenty locations had the opportunity to explore our aircraft hangar, meet Finnair's cabin crew, pilots, and technical professionals, and learn about the history of aviation at the Aviation Museum.
In February, we organised a Facebook competition, where students from grades 1 to 6 all over Finland had the chance to win a class trip to our aircraft hangar and the Aviation Museum. Hundreds of schools participated, and 80 lucky classes were randomly selected for a unique trip to a space that is usually not accessible to the public.
The impressive hangar
We opened the doors of our hangar at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, where Finnair's aircraft are serviced. The hangar, which is about the size of four football fields, is impressive in itself. It can accommodate four wide-body and four narrow-body aircraft simultaneously, and it is home to Finland's largest sliding doors. Since the hangar is located in a restricted area of the airport, the bus had to pass through security. On the way to the hangar, there was an opportunity to spot airplanes ready for departure or recently arrived at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport. At the hangar, our visitors were able to explore the aircraft from the inside. The luckiest ones had the chance to go inside our overhauled A350 aircraft with the special 100th birthday Moomin livery.
Tricky questions for the pilot
The students got to explore various areas inside the aircraft from the passenger cabins to the crew rest areas. One of the highlights for many was the visit to the cockpit and the opportunity to meet a Finnair pilot who answered many tricky questions. The adventurous visitors were eager to find answers to questions such as "How many displays are there in the cockpit?" or "Where does the crew sleep on the aircraft?" found in their activity booklet. In addition to the booklet's questions, they pondered topics such as turbulence, the functioning of autopilot, the possibility of landing at Linnanmäki amusement park, the time it takes to wash an aircraft, and whether a dragon could hit a plane departing from Hong Kong. The pilots, cabin crew, and Finnair's technical professionals were happy to answer the imaginative questions. Finally, a class picture was taken as a memento for everyone.
Blueberry juice and a touch of history
After the thrilling hangar visit, the tour continued back to the Aviation Museum, where the students had the opportunity to explore Finnair's and Finland's aviation history. The Finnish Aviation Museum is dedicated to aviation history, with a focus on aircraft designed or used by Finns and Finnish aviation. There, our young visitors admired the hang gliders suspended from the ceiling, tried out seats from different aircraft, and had a peek inside the Convair Metropolitan passenger plane previously used by Finnair. The tour concluded with freshly baked cinnamon rolls and Finnair's beloved blueberry juice. Thank you to all the adventurers!