Helsinki Airport to upgrade security technology

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Airport operator Finavia has unveiled its plans to upgrade its security control technology at Helsinki Airport in Finland and centralize its operations in one terminal.

As part of the Helsinki Airport development program, Finavia will implement new scanning and liquid analysis equipment in which passengers will no longer have to remove their electronics and liquids from their hand baggage. These upgrades, alongside new automated lines, are expected to double the airport’s security capacity and speed up the service.

During the transition to the new equipment, some old equipment will remain in use. This means that electronics and bags containing liquids have to be taken out of bags on some lines. However, Finavia’s staff, security officers and signs will direct passengers on which procedure to carry out.

The airport has also created more space in security control to enable passengers more time to prepare their luggage. Additionally, the area has been designed with a blue color scheme to lower passenger stress levels.

The airport will also centralize the check-in and baggage services for all flights into one terminal, which was completed in December 2021. This move was made to decrease the uncertainty around which terminal passengers were to fly from.

The transition to the new premises will take place in two phases. From March 21 to May 23, 2022, airlines operating from Terminal 2, including Finnair, Air Baltic and British Airways, will transfer to the new departures hall. The second phase will begin on June 1, when airlines including Norwegian, Lufthansa and SAS, which are currently operating from Terminal 1, will relocate. By June 30, Helsinki Airport plans to have fully adopted the single terminal operating model. Following this, the check-in area, security control and baggage drop in Terminal 1 will be closed.

Ulla Lettijeff, senior vice president and executive director of the Helsinki Airport project at Finavia, said, “We will centralize the check-in and baggage services for all flights under the stunning wooden ceiling of the new terminal extension, opened last December. On May 24, we will open a direct passage from the security control to the renewed gate area. A spacious departure gate area with new shops and a café will open up for passengers. The distance from the terminal’s main door to the nearest departure gate is just under 200m, which is quite short compared to many other airports around the world.”

Henri Hansson, senior vice president, airport infrastructure, sustainability, safety, security and compliance at Finavia, said, “Opening of the new, advanced security control and transferring all flights under one roof are an important part of our service reform to streamline transfer traveling and develop the customer experience. The new security control technology at Helsinki Airport means that laptops, phones or large SLR cameras, for example, no longer need to be taken out of carry-on bags or hand baggage. The plastic bags, in which containers of less than 100ml of liquid must be packed, can also remain inside hand baggage.”

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