Helsinki Airport has become the first European airport to offer sleeping pods to passengers after the GoSleep programme was launched in mid-February.
The Finnish designed GoSleep sleeping pod is an ergonomic seat that can be turned into a bed, where passengers can rest safe from passers-by and ambient disturbances. Passengers can conveniently store hand luggage under the seat and pull up a cover that isolates them from light and noise. The seat also has a power point for charging a phone or laptop.
In 2014, the international SleepingInAirports.com website, which evaluates sleeping possibilities in airports, selected Helsinki Airport as the world’s third most sleep-friendly airport.
The airport will climb the league tables after it introduced 19 GoSleep pods, along with pillows and blankets, at gates 18 and 38.
“We wish to provide passengers with an opportunity for stress-free travel and a nap between flights,” said Heikki Koski, vice president at Finavia, Helsinki Airport.
“Helsinki Airport has many transit passengers, who may not have had any sleep for a day or are suffering from jet lag. I believe that the service will have genuine demand.”
The service was tested on site under the airport rest area pilot project in 2013, and attracted a lot of interest and attention from passengers. The pilot project showed that passengers prefer individual sleeping pods to larger rest areas.
“Based on customer feedback, we will continue to refine the service to make it even more customer-friendly,” commented Jussi Piispanen, CEO of Short Rest Solutions, the manufacturer behind GoSleep.
Airport operator Finavia is investing strongly in the development of customer experience at Helsinki Airport, having already introduced yoga, Kainuu rest area, Book Swap point and a free art gallery to the airport. Commercial services are also getting a revamp, with 70 new or renovated shops and restaurants under development at the airport
Finavia has a €900 million (£655m) development programme under way, which aims to increase the transfer capacity of Helsinki Airport and the annual passenger volume to 20 million in 2020.