CHILDREN TRAVELLING ALONE
Aero Airlines and Finnair are responsible for children who travel alone (i.e. Unaccompanied Minors [UM]) throughout their entire journey, from the departure airport to their final destination.
- Children who are 5-11 years old travel on aircraft as unaccompanied minors. An appropriate UM reservation must be made for each child when the flight is booked.
- The UM service is not offered for children under 5 years of age. Children under 5 years of age are accepted for travel only if they travel with a family member who is 16 years of age or over (if the person concerned is not a parent) or with a chaperone arranged by the child’s guardians.
- Young people of 12-17 years of age who are travelling alone can also be offered the same escort service as that provided for 5-11-year-olds. In that case, an UM reservation must be made for each of them when the flight is booked.
- The number of unaccompanied minors is limited for each flight, so it is recommended to book the trip in good time before the planned date of travel.
- Reservations for routes requiring overnight stops during the trip are not accepted for unaccompanied minors.
Before the flight
- It is a good idea to redeem the flight ticket in advance and not to wait until arrival at the airport. It is also recommended to give the contact information (address and telephone number) of both the person seeing off the child and the person meeting the child, already at the time of flight reservation. Moreover, the transportation agreement, namely the UM Handling Advice, should be completed calmly well in advance of travelling. It is recommended that you arrive at the airport at least one hour before the flight departure, so that all of the details in the documents can be checked and any omissions rectified.
- Take a look at the UM Handling Advice. The form is obtainable from travel agents or Finnair offices. Fill out the form before check-in.
- Unaccompanied minors must register at check-in, even if they have only hand baggage.
- At the check-in desk, the child will be given a neck pouch, into which all the documents needed by the child during the trip, such as flight tickets, passport, visa, vaccination certificate, should be placed, as well as information about any allergies the child may have. The UM Handling Advice (the transport document for an unaccompanied minor), which includes the name and contact information of both the chaperone and the person meeting the child, should also be placed in the neck pouch.
- At the check-in desk, the assistant will check whether the flight is on schedule and, in the case of any irregularities, provide assistance in rearranging travel plans.
- An adult must accompany the child to the airport and he or she must wait there until the aircraft has departed (in practice, until the flight information is removed from the monitors and information boards). If he or she wishes to accompany the child all the way to the departure gate at Helsinki-Vantaa, he or she must obtain permission to do so from check-in or from the ticket office. Unaccompanied minors must be at the departure gate at least 25 minutes before the departure of the aircraft, because child passengers are taken on to the aircraft before the other passengers. Staff will attend to child passengers throughout the flight and provide them with activity packs and entertainment material, so that the flight passes off smoothly.
Child’s chaperone on the flight
- Children under 5 years of age are accepted for travel only if they travel with a family member (if the person concerned is not a parent) who is 16 years of age or over or with a chaperone who is not a family member arranged by the child’s guardians.
- Children who are five years of age or over may travel without an UM reservation on domestic flights in the company of a family member who is at least 12 years old and on international flights with a family member who is 16 years old.
- A chaperone (arranged by the child’s guardian) who is not a family member must be at least 16 years old on domestic flights and at least 18 years old on international flights.
After the flight
- An adult must meet the unaccompanied minor at the airport.
- The identity of the recipient marked on the UM form is checked in connection with the handover, and the handover is confirmed by the signature of the recipient.