We are signed up for the 14 day Scandinavia Tour this coming August. We are going to fly to Helsinki then on to Stockholm. We want to spend at least a day in Helsinki and wonder if it would be best to just book a hotel by the airport and take public transportation to the downtown. Has anyone done this or do most people find hotels closer to the downtown?
The Finnair Bus is a convenient way to get between the airport and downtown Helsinki:
We stayed at an airport hotel the night before our departure on our last trip to Finland. The shuttle between the hotel and airport was NOT convenient and the "airport" hotel seemed several kilometers distant from the terminal. We're planning on a Helsinki hotel near the train station the night before our departure this coming February.
The Finnair bus is convenient and goes to the main train station. I'd choose a hotel within walking distance of the train station and stay in the city center.
In August, a lot of the business hotels have reduced rates. In 2014, I stayed at Glo Hotel Kluuvi at an excellent rate. The hotel is very centrally located right off the Esplanade and just a short walk from the train station.
Have you already booked your flight? If not, you might consider taking the overnight ferry from Helsinki to Stockholm.
Agree with the others, unless you have a really early morning flight, don't stay by the airport. It's a little far from downtown and although the bus is convenient, it isn't very fast.
It depends on when your flight leaves. If you leave in the AM, might as well stay by the airport, the Pilotti for example is fairly cheap. Otherwise it might be more fun to be in town and wander freely, knowing you can walk back to your hotel. There are several inexpensive hotels in the city center including Omena and even some fairly nice hostels.
BTW, as of June 2015 you can take a train to the airport!
I live many hours from HKI and always stay at an airport hotel before a morning departure. Almost all hotels have free airport transports and they are reliable. Don't know what problems the post above must have had, maybe he got on a parking lot bus by mistake. If your departure is too early for breakfast or the standard busses, ask and something will usually be arranged for you.
We spent our recovery night flying in from the US as well as the night before our flight back to the US at the Hilton at the Helsinki Airport. It is just across the street from the airport, and there is a covered walkway that connects them so you don't need a shuttle bus. It is a very nice Hilton. We have Honors status which got us a great room on the Executive level and even an in-room sauna. It was easy the morning after arrival to walk across the street and catch the Finnair bus to downtown Helsinki. It did take a while, but we enjoyed the sights and ease of travel. Once there we used a tram to get to the ferry pier we needed to travel onward. We don't prefer to stay in Hilton-type hotels when we travel, but in this case it was comforting and relaxing after a strenuous/lengthy travel day.