Finnair to weigh departing passengers

Check in before weigh in in Helsinki Credit: Finnair

Although it wasn’t unusual some years ago for passengers boarding commercial helicopter flights in the USA, some Finnair passengers may not be happy with a new announcement.

Would you mind being weighed?

During much of February and then April to May, the airline will be weighing passengers and their hand luggage as well as recording age, gender and class of travel when departing from Helsinki Airport.

In fairness, this isn’t going to be obligatory and passengers will have the option to opt out of the mass weighing and can be assured that the information is anonymous with only one person (the one doing the weighing) knowing the passengers weight.

Finnair actually undertook this same procedure in 2018 as it is very useful to calculate average weights  to be able to optimise Finnair’s current aircraft balance calculations.

Each aircraft has a set maximum weight to ensure a safe take-off, and this weight cannot be exceeded. This includes the weight of the aircraft itself and the weight of fuel, checked baggage and cargo, onboard catering, water tanks and customers.

While airlines know the weight of all other aspects, the weight of customers and their carry-on baggage is calculated using average weights confirmed by the Civil Aviation Authority but Finnair prefer to produce their own statistics which have to be renewed every five years.

Could this cause delays?

The only possible problem will be that if there are a lot of volunteers that passengers will need to check in early due to the potential queue.

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Written by

John Smith

Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica. Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene. Currently he is acting as Editorial Consultant for the paper helping to shape its future development. Share your story with us by emailing, by calling +34 951 38 61 61 or by messaging our Facebook page


    • John Little

      08 February 2024 • 11:14

      Reminds me of my days in Papua New Guinea. Travelling by DC3, some still rigged in military sidesaddle seating. each plane we got on we had to step on the scales first. seemed to work ok – certainly got passenger correct weights, not the averaging they use nowadays .

    • Thomas Halpin

      08 February 2024 • 16:58

      I always wonder about the air hostess saying that they you should take your allocated seat as this is set for the balance, if My wife son and I weight in at 190kg total and in the seats across from us there is a husband, wife and sister weighing in at 320kg total how can the airline balance that???

    • Anders

      08 February 2024 • 17:19

      Wonder if the airline is considering to change their branding to THINNAIR??
      Try this in the U.K. and prepare for anarchy.. 😉

    • Robert Faraday

      09 February 2024 • 12:53

      The logic is only valid for passengers who would turn up without prior booking and their seating positions could be automatically assigned for balance. I cannot see how the system could work with seat allocation system on pre-boarding tickets.

    Comments are closed.