Security control

Before you enter the departure lounge, you and your hand luggage will pass through a security check. Any luggage you may have checked in earlier will also be security checked.

Before you get to the airport, it is a good idea to make sure that you know what items you are allowed to carry in your onboard and check-in luggage and what items are completely forbidden. See our website for useful hints and tips on how to pack your luggage correctly at home.

Getting ready for security control

  • Place your mobile telephone, keys and coins in your bag or jacket pocket. If you leave them in your trouser pocket, they will set of an alarm unnecessarily.
  • Remove your coat and/or jacket.
  • It is also a good idea to take off any other metal items, including watches, belts and large pieces of jewellery. Shoes can also often contain metal parts and, if you wish, you can also remove your shoes for scanning. 
  • Remove any portable electronic devices, including computers, tablets and cameras from your bag or carry case.
  • Remove all liquids, medicines and baby food items along with any large electronic items. If these items are found in your bag, you will be required to go through an additional security check. You can also re-visit our guide on liquids.

As you enter the security control

  • Please place all your outerwear and items of hand luggage in the containers provided and place the container on the conveyor belt.
  • Present your paper or electronic boarding card to the security staff. Digital boarding card scanners are in use at Helsinki Airport before you enter the security check area.
  • Please walk though the metal detector gate.

If you set off the metal detector

If you set off an alarm on the metal detector gate, one of our security staff will determine why this has happened. You will be asked to remove any items that may have caused the alarm and go through the metal detector again.

The staff may also conduct a pat down search. Sometimes, staff will need to use their hands to check on the inside of your trouser or skirt waistband.

The best way you can avoid an additional pat down search is to remove all possible metal objects and place them on the X-ray conveyor belt for inspection. Sequins, buttons, or wired undergarments can also set off an alarm.

The Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi) requires us to perform more detailed inspections, based on random sampling, on a certain number of passengers passing through security control. At Finavia airports, the inspections based on random sampling are carried out using explosives trace detectors (ETDs).

What if I have packed a prohibited item?

If your hand baggage includes banned items or substances, you will be asked to hand them over to a member of staff for disposal. If you have time before your flight, you can leave security control and

  • return to the check-in counter to to check in hand baggage,
  • leave it with a friend or family member if you were dropped off at the airport, store it in your car
  • or use one of the left luggage facilities at the airport. A fee is payable for the left luggage service. At Helsinki Airport, storage lockers can be found in Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. The airport also has a storage service.

If forbidden items are found in your checked in luggage, they will be removed. The confiscated goods will be stored for some weeks and you can arrange to collect them from the airport. If items are removed from your luggage, staff will replace them with instructions for how to reclaim your items.

You can also use the service provided by Cotio to arrange for any items removed from your hand luggage to be returned to you. A fee is payable for this service and it is currently only available at Helsinki Airport.

Further information on security control

Further background information about security control

The security control of air travel passengers is regulated by shared rules in EU countries with the aim of ensuring the safety and flow of travelling.

In Finland, the Finnish Transport Safety Agency Trafi is the national authority in charge of security control regulations. The Trafi website provides further information on airport security control procedures.