Airport Development Director Sami Kiiskinen told Yle that the largest number of passengers in Helsinki-Vantaa’s history will reach peak times, even exceeding the 2019 record level.
"For example, there are a total of about 3,500 passengers on flights today from 4 to 5 p.m. [Friday]. It’s alot. There are now large numbers of people on the move," Kiiskinen said.
The start of the holiday season has also been reflected in the amount of checked-in and special baggage, Kiiskinen added and urged passengers to arrive at the airport well in advance of their flight.
People should too "mentally prepare" queues, especially if checked luggage, he pointed out.
Staff shortages lead to long delays
The airport added in its statement that the queues at the security check are also likely to be long and delays are expected, in addition to which passengers are urged to book extra time even if they travel without luggage.
Helsinki-Vantaa has suffered from a shortage of personnel due to the pandemic, which has led to delays in security inspections.
"The number of personnel decreased during the pandemic and the number has not yet been restored. In addition, the sick leave caused by the pandemic continues to affect" Kiiskinen said.
The situation is exacerbated by the closure of the security check at Terminal 1 after 10.45 on Friday morning.
Kiiskinen estimates that the congestion will continue until June and maybe even summer.
"For example, the day after tomorrow, Sunday, we may see even higher passenger numbers than today," he said.
Source: The Nordic Page