Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Airline
Lufthansa
Flight
LH854
Aircraft
Airbus A321-100
Registration
D-AIRR
Class
Economy
Seat
12E
Date
24/10/2023
Flight time
02:00

  Finland | Autumn 2023

Lufthansa Frankfurt (FRA)  →  Helsinki (HEL) A321-100 Economy Class 24/10/2023 Current review
Lufthansa Helsinki (HEL)  →  Frankfurt (FRA) A321-200 Economy Class 02/11/2023

Introduction

Hello everyone, and welcome to this new Flight review. Today I'm taking you on board a now-rare Lufthansa A321-100 between Frankfurt and Helsinki.

First of all, I'd like to apologize for the quality of the photos. I must confess that night shots are not my forte.

This is the first time I've been to Finland, but not the first time I've left Germany's biggest airport: Frankfurt.

But first, I'll meet you at Strasbourg train station in France.


Lufthansa Express Bus: Strasbourg - Frankfurt

To get to Frankfurt, in addition to my plane ticket between Frankfurt and Helsinki, I booked a ticket for the Lufthansa Express Bus between Strasbourg and the German airport.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

This service, now in place for several years, was intended to replace aircraft on short flights, as is the case between Strasbourg and Frankfurt.

On a positive note, the total cost of flights with the bus is often cheaper than without, which is a plus.

A Wi-Fi connection is available on board the bus. Toilets are also available. Luggage should be placed in the hold of the bus, and small bags should be taken with you. The bus seat is very comfortable and is equipped with a coat hook, a tray table, and a footrest. Bottled water is also available on board. The bus leaves at 4.45 pm, which is the exact time indicated on the ticket.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

On the way, we are treated to a magnificent sunset.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

As you can imagine, we'll be arriving in Frankfurt by night.


Frankfurt Airport

We arrived at Frankfurt airport station at 7 pm.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Now it's time to move on to the check-in.

The airport station is magnificent, with its large glass dome.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

A few meters further on, we reach the check-in area for passengers arriving by train or bus.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Everything is done independently.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Once the luggage has gone to the plane's hold, it's time for us to join our plane.

We've arrived relatively early, so our flight is displayed on the “further flights” list, but we're heading for security all the same. Helsinki is in the Schengen area, so no passport control is necessary.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

At night, Frankfurt airport is quite dark, despite a few lights here and there.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

At this hour, the part of the airport dedicated to intra-European flights is relatively empty. Everything goes pretty fast, and we don't have to wait long, as is the case almost every time I leave Frankfurt.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

The good thing about German security checks is that there's no need to take out liquids and electronic devices since the new 3D scanners scan baggage more accurately than the old-generation scanners. A good thing, since it saves a lot of time.

Once through security, we head for the boarding gate.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Our first stop is Duty-Free, well-stocked with products of all kinds.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

The Concourse A we arrived in was quite dark at this time of night. Some areas, however, remain brighter, such as the children's play areas and the boarding gates.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Lufthansa has a strong presence in the departure hall. In addition, there are numerous relaxation areas, small restaurants, and bakeries. I also noticed a video game area. Very nice!

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Boarding

Now it's time to board. Boarding takes place in groups of 1 to 5.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

I'm in group 3, so I board after the priority passengers (Business Class, with children, with status).

Our aircraft is an Airbus A321-131, registered D-AIRR, received by the German airline in 1996. Its nickname is Wismar.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

The traditional fuselage shot:

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

We arrive on the plane and are greeted by a very friendly crew.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

The aircraft is equipped with 200 economy seats, with the front section in European Business configuration (middle seat blocked).

I'm sitting in seat 12E, unfortunately, a middle seat.


Cabin and seat

Let's take advantage of boarding to discover the cabin and the seat.

The cabin has a 3-3 configuration, with a few exceptions for emergency exits. This is the old Lufthansa cabin and the old overhead panel. The seat is not equipped with USB ports or electrical outlets. There is, however, a tray table and a pocket at the bottom of the seat.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Each seat also features a personal reading light and ventilation.


Push back and taxi

Once boarding is complete, the crew begins safety demonstrations at the same time as push-back begins.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

We then begin the taxi to our departure runway, runway 25C, which is quite rare.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Because of the reflections, I didn't have the opportunity to take many photos.


Take-off

We arrive at the holding point for runway 25C.

Strobes on, landing lights on, we're ready to go.

15 minutes after the scheduled time, the plane accelerates on the runway.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

We leave German soil and make a left turn to head northeast towards Finland.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

On-board service

Shortly after takeoff, the crew handed out a bottle of fresh water to passengers who were still awake. I really appreciated it, as I was quite thirsty.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Then the crew switched to selling the pay service.

Despite the reasonable price, I'm probably repeating myself, but it's a real shame that the classic airlines no longer offer full onboard service on short flights.

Throughout the flight, Europe is covered in clouds.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Concerning the toilets, they are traditional A320-family toilets.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Wi-Fi on board and entertainment

Lufthansa offers Internet access on board its aircraft. Four offers are available:

  • 30-minute free message pass
  • A message pass for €3 or 1,000 miles
  • Mail & Surf pass for €7 or 2,300 miles
  • Stream pass for €12 or 4,000 miles
Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

The message pass works very well and allows you to send photos on apps like WhatsApp, messages on Instagram or Messenger, and even if you know, post your BeReal from the air. In short, a very good point.

What's more, the connection platform allows you to see the progress of your flight live, along with other information such as the plane's speed or altitude.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

You also have access to all connecting flights.


Descent and approach

After a 1.5-hour flight, we began our descent into Finland. At this point, the crew handed out the Lufthansa chocolate.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Once through the cloud layers, we can see the Estonian and Russian coasts.

The descent is gentle.


Landing

During our approach, we make virtually no turns and are therefore directly aligned with runway 04L at Helsinki airport.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

At 1 am, we touch down on Finnish soil.

We soon reach our gate.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Deboarding and Helsinki airport

As with boarding, deboarding takes place in groups, row by row.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

We quickly leave the plane to find ourselves in an airport emptied of passengers.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

There's no one there, everything's closed.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

We quickly collect our luggage and leave the airport.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Once in the airport departure hall, I was surprised to be the only passenger still in the airport. You get the feeling you're in an abandoned airport. An amusing experience.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

So that's how this Flight review ends. I hope you've enjoyed it, and I'll see you soon for the return flight to Frankfurt.

Flight review: Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Helsinki in Economy

Conclusion

Frankfurt Airport

As usual, my experience in Frankfurt was more than satisfying. Check-in is very smooth, and the airport is very clean. The only downside is that while the airport is very bright during the day, it's sorely lacking in light at night. However, several services ensure a pleasant wait at the German airport.

Lufthansa

First of all, the German airline scores well with the bus service it offers between Strasbourg and Frankfurt. The bus is very comfortable, and the Wi-Fi is much appreciated.

As for the flight to Frankfurt, it was very pleasant. Despite the lack of in-flight catering, the Wi-Fi offer is very reasonable, and the crew is very pleasant for a late-night flight when crews are often exhausted after a long day.

The cabin is showing its age but is still decent.

All in all, Lufthansa remains a very good airline, even though on-board service has to be paid for.

Helsinki Airport

Helsinki airport is very pleasant. The presence of wood creates a very pleasant, warm atmosphere. Everything is very clean.

Concerning the fluidity, I prefer not to express myself since at 1 a.m. it is not representative.


Ratings

Cleanliness
5/5
Accessibility and orientation
5/5
Efficiency
5/5
Services
5/5
3.7/5
Cabin and comfort
4/5
Entertainment
3.7/5
Food and beverages
2.1/5
Crew
5/5
Cleanliness
5/5
Accessibility and orientation
5/5
Efficiency
N/A
Services
N/A

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