Travelling from Asia to Arctic Lapland via Helsinki Airport is more and more popular

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There is a positive trend in Lapland tourism. According to Finavia statistics, the number of transit passengers from Asia to Lapland increased by over 9% last year.

The number of charter flights in Lapland increased by 19% in the Christmas season. Finavia will invest over EUR 35 million in Lapland’s airports in 2014-2016.

Finavia statistics show that last year, a higher number of transit passengers travelled from Helsinki Airport to Lapland airports. The number of passengers who switched from Asian routes to aircraft bound to Lapland increased by over 9%. Japan, by far, accounted for the highest number of transit passengers, whereas the number of passengers from China, Hong Kong and Singapore increased the most.

Recent figures obtained elsewhere from the tourism industry support Finavia statistics. According to recent statistics, the number of nights that people from Asian countries stayed Finland increased by over 20% last year. The number of nights that the Chinese stayed in Finland increased by as much as 40%.

Ivalo Airport popular among the Chinese

The surroundings of Ivalo Airport are one of the biggest areas of growth among Chinese tourists. Advanced information from Statistics Finland show that the number of nights spent in the Inari-Saariselkä area by Chinese nationals increased by as much as 70% last year.

One thing that is clear is that magical Lapland is an appealing tourist destination at the moment. It is nice to read the statistics indicating growth, but Lapland still has a lot of potential for further growth”, says Kari Savolainen, CEO at Finavia.

A statistics review for the media took place at Ivalo Airport where Finavia recently completed a EUR 13.5 million expansion and renovation. The project was finished last November well in advance before the start of the busiest segment of the winter season.

In fact, the renovated Ivalo Airport had an excellent year as it set its all-time record in terms of passenger volume: 155,208 passengers: an increase of 9% compared to the previous year.

Finavia’s charter flight statistics are positive

Finavia has prepared Lapland airports for an increase in air traffic volumes and passenger numbers. The passenger experience at the terminals has been improved and fluency has been increased at Kittilä, Rovaniemi and particularly at Ivalo. Air traffic areas were renovated at Ivalo and Kittilä, and a runway construction project will be launched at Rovaniemi in May 2016.

Many indicators show that Lapland airports are on the path of growth. In December 2015, the number of charter flights to the north was 19% higher than in December 2014. Kittilä set the highest figures: 171 charter flights, i.e. an increase of over 21%. In addition to Ivalo, Rovaniemi Airport set a record in passenger volume, with 478,347 passengers, i.e. an increase of 8% compared to the previous year. Rovaniemi Airport was chosen as Airport of the Year for 2015.

The passenger volume of Lapland airports exceeded one million in 2015. The year 2008 was the last time this happened. The passenger volume for 2015 was 1,007,011 (973,953 in 2014). Finavia Lapland Airports are Enontekiö, Ivalo, Kemi-Tornio, Kittilä, Kuusamo and Rovaniemi.

Charter flights for Christmas 2015

Airport

Number of landings in December 2014

Number of landings in December 2015

Percentage of change

Enontekiö

51

56

+ 9.8%

Ivalo

59

78

+ 32.2%

Kittilä

141

171

+ 21.3%

Rovaniemi

135

160

+ 20.3%

Kuusamo

13

10

– 23.0%

TOTAL

399

475

19.0%

Table: Comparison information about the number of realised charter flights in December 2014 and December 2015. Finavia Corporation.

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