Another travel day today, as we depart from Stockholm bound for Helsinki. Kathryn really loves train travel, and so do I, because you get to see more of the countryside. Sure it’s whizzing by at 200kmh, but that’s better than being on a plane where everything looks kinda the same and boring.
So we caught a plane. There’s really only two ways to go from Stockholm to Helsinki, a 16 hour ferry, or a 45 minute flight. While I enjoy the romanticism of ferries as much as the next guy, as well as being able to sleep on the ferry, with airlines like Norwegian offering flights for around 50 euro, why not fly?
We have a Priority Pass which allows us access to Airport Lounges, so we checked out the one at Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport. Stockholm is expensive, so getting into one of these lounges is a great way to stock up on food and drink, use a bit of wireless, and relax before the flight.
Norwegian Air, while a low cost carrier, are a really nice airline. Free WiFi in flight is amazing! Since we checked in so early yesterday, we were on the first row of the plane. While this is great for leg room, it’s kinda awful for carry on, because there’s no seat to put your bag under, and the overhead locker is smaller as well. The Flight Attendant wasn’t too sympathetic to our plight of where to put our luggage, which means we had to put it in a few overhead lockers down. Such is life, I don’t mind being the last off the plane.
Our flight was around 2pm, which means we got to see the sunset over Finland and Helsinki. It was beautiful. What appeared to be hundreds of small islands, the sunset reflecting in the water, it was a nice sight.
We arrived at Helsinki Airport, and for the first time, we had to catch a bus to town, which was 5 euros each. A bit cheaper than the near 30 dollars per person in Stockholm. We caught a tram and made our way to Eurohostel, where we paid 55 euros for a double room. We then paid another 5 euros to upgrade to a TV, and another 5 euros for WiFi.
In my opinion, this was the worst place we’ve stayed in this trip. It was expensive, even more so once we added on the extras. There was about 20 rooms on each floor, with two toilets per sex. The showers were basically public, with a couple of bits of glass to shade your private bits, but your face and feet are still open to everyone else. And not to be a complainer, but it was the worst to pay for WiFi, especially the more expensive “fast” WiFi, and it was about as fast as a 56k dialup modem. It’s not that it was slow, it’s that it cost more, and was advertised as being fast.