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The right type: Have you noticed the new signs at Helsinki Airport?

Article published
8.3.2017 at 07:00
Passenger walking past signs at airport terminal.
What do fonts, spacing, color and design all have in common? You wouldn’t think so at first, but all these aspects contribute to making your travel experience as hassle-free as possible.

With Helsinki Airport’s terminal expansion under way, the additional gates and services call for new signs. Simultaneously, Finavia began rethinking all the signs throughout the airport. Jari Pusa, Service Manager at Finavia, says that when they were deciding on which direction to take with the redesign, a Danish consultant asked why the airport’s signs were blue and yellow. 

“Those colors are typically associated with Sweden, as opposed to Finland’s blue and white,” he chuckles. If you’ve noticed, the latest signs have been redone in blue and white, however, with the intention of making them clearly legible through a sharp contrast of colors.

Pusa adds that by installing signs that say gates 1-60 – despite the fact that certain gates do not yet exist – the airport is preparing for future terminal growth while updating its old signposts.

The locations of the signs have pretty much remained the same, but the look, color and designs have undergone a facelift. The passenger experience has been enhanced by the addition of new interactive maps, and fresh signboards articulate the airport’s global nature.

“The biggest changes involve how much – and what – information appears on each screen. On the old signs, Finnish, Swedish and English were all printed in the same sized font. However, we decided to make English the master language on the new signs, and therefore, English text has been printed in the largest font size,” Pusa notes.

Since many transferring passengers pass through the airport, Pusa insists that Finavia is going to begin installing clear indicators of the time-zone Helsinki belongs to.

Since many signs are directly above busy walkways, this adds to the logistical challenge of setting them up. Most installations must thus be done at night.

An impressive 5-meter by 5-meter screen, which updates in real-time according to the departure country of the flights arriving in the non-Schengen area, has also been built as part of the improvement.


Read more about international passengers growth at Helsinki Airport.