Oulu Airport

Oulu Airport (EFOU) is located in Oulu, Finland, southwest of the city area. Oulu is the second busiest airport in Finland, measured by the number of passengers. Most of the commercial flights to Oulu operate from Helsinki (EFHK). Charts for EFOU can be found here.

ATS Positions

Login Frequency Callsign Area of Responsibility
EFOU_TWR  124.400 Oulun Torni
Oulu Tower
Taxiway & runway movement, Oulu CTR
EFOU_APP 118.150  Oulun Tutka
Oulu Radar
Oulu TMA & CTA

Oulu Airport is usually operated by one controller, Oulu Tower, who is also responsible for the TMA and CTA when Oulu Radar is offline. Oulu Radar is activated when the traffic amount requires, or when Military Air Traffic is using the Airport and/or airspace.

Runway use

The aerodrome has one runway (12/30). During daytime the runway may be used in both directions according to wind and weather. Note that runway 30 is not equipped with an ILS approch. Arriving traffic on runway 30 shall primarily be cleared for the RNP approach. During night time, 20-05z (19-04z), civil aviation must use runway 12 as the primary landing runway, and runway 30 as the primary takeoff runway. Intersection takeoffs may only be performed during daytime.

Finnhems medical helicopter

A medical helicopter base is located at the airport north of Apron 2. In case of status flight (medical/HOSP) it has a priority to other traffic! The call-sign of the medical helicopter is "Finnhems 50" (ICAO: FIH50). The medical helicopter will perform approach directly to its base. The helicopter will take about 3 minutes to be pushed out of the hangar. It will primarily be departing in the direction of runway 12, or towards Papinjärvi. When the mission requires to cross the runway overhead or over the approach path, a runway crossing clearance must be given. The medical helicopter will transport patients to Oulun Yliopistollinen sairaala (EFHO), "Oussi" helipad.

Finnhems 50 squawk code: 0005.

Finnhems 50, Cleared direct en-route, 5000ft or below, QNH 1013, wind 220 degrees 2 knots, cleared for takeoff. Report airborne. Cleared to cross runway.

Finnhems 50, selvä menetelmän mukaan, QNH 1013. Tuulet 220 astetta 2 solmua, selvä lentoonlähtöön. Ilmoita ilmassa. Selvä ylittää kiitotie.

Low visibility procedures

The airport is approved for low visibility procedures (LVP). Low visibility procedures for takeoffs (LVPTO) is used when the RVR value is 550 M or less. LVP for all air traffic will become effective when the RVR value decreases to 550 M. Runway 12 is approved for CAT2 approaches. The application of LVP shall be informed to the pilots by ATIS or on the frequency by ATC.

IFR clearance

The IFR clearance is issued by Oulu Tower. Traffic shall be instructed to follow a standard departure (SID), or cleared direct to the TMA exit point. Note that due to noise abatement regulations, departures from runway 12 must be cleared to follow SID. Coordination is required with Helsinki Control if a longer direct (DCT) clearance is preferred. The next flight-planned airway or point, initial altitude and the squawk code shall also be included in the IFR clearance. The initial cleared altitude will be the final reuqested flight level, if not restricted by Helsinki Control (ACC).

Finnair 6RK, cleared to Helsinki, runway 30, direct MIKNU, M857, FL310, squawk 0214.

Ground movements & parking

Example of a puchback clearance:

Nortrans 114, time 58, push back and startup approved. QNH 1021. Runway 30 for departure.

Taxiing on the apron is always subject to instructions by Oulu Tower. Arriving general aviation traffic with wake turbulence category Light (L) shall be cleared to taxi to Apron 3.

Commercial traffic with wake turbulence category (M) shall be cleared to stand 9-16. Primary stands, provided with jetways, are 13, 14 and 15. Commercial turbo-props shall primarily be cleared to stand 12B or 13B. International flights outside of Schengen area shall use stand 16. More information in the table below.

The Military Apron (MIL APN or Apron M) is located south of the runway. Military helicopters can be instructed to make approach directly to apron M. Stands shall not be assigned to military aircraft on Apron M.

OMG, taxi to apron 3.

Finnair 7ML, taxi to apron, stand 14.

The table below can be used as a general guideline for assigning parking positions at the airport.

Stand Usage Example of airlines and types
13-15 Medium jets, Schengen FIN, IBK
16 Medium/heavy jet, non-Schengen IBK, FHY, CAI
12B, 13B Medium turboprop FIN (Norra), SAS
Apron M Military Air Traffic FNF
Apron 3 Local General Aviation  
Apron 2 General Aviation  


Oulu Control Zone (CTR) is class D airspace with an upper limit of 1700 ft MSL. Service to traffic in the CTR shall be provided in accordance with the airspace classification. If Oulu Radar is online, coordination is required for VFR traffic exiting the CTR for traffic information purposes.

Preferred VFR traffic pattern south of runway.

Oulu Terminal Area (TMA) is also class D airspace. The TMA extends from 1700 ft up to FL95. Service to traffic in the TMA shall be provided in accordance with the airspace classification. If Tower and Radar is separate units, it is recommended to coordinate inbound VFR traffic direct to the traffic circuit from the TMA. If this is the case, no separate clearance is required to enter the CTR. A radio transfer shall be made before the CTR border.

Inbound IFR traffic will enter the TMA via ABKEM, UGMOR, NUBVU, UPEDU, BEDSO, OTVEM, XEVAP, IXONO or SUVIB. Traffic will be cleared to FL100 by Helsinki Control, and cleared for RNAV STAR serving the runway in use. Military traffic not able to follow the STAR, will usually be cleared direct OUK VOR and expect vectors or visual/VOR approach serving the runway in use.

Nortrans 114, Oulu Tower, radar contact. Continue descent to 2300 ft, QNH 1021. Expect RNP- or visual approach runway 30, left circuit. Number 1 in traffic.

If the inbound aircraft is cleared direct to the "T-bar" by Helsinki Control, it is suggested to state the trackmiles or minutes to the TMA border. This information can be given with or after the initial descent clearance.

Freebird Air 221, for your information, next 30 miles below flight level 95, uncontrolled airspace.

Departing traffic shall be transferred to Helsinki Control when passing FL95.

Parachute operations

Parachute operations at Oulu airport is common. Parachute operations in Finland does not have specific phraseology standards. Since the phraseology is not predefined, other phraseology and plain language is used. 

Parachute operations in Oulu is allowed from 0500z to 2000z, if other agreements are not made with ATC. Operations directly above Finnhems medical helicopter base is not recommended.

Oulu Tower or Radar shall request an airspace reservation from Helsinki ACC. Usually Oulu TMA vertical limits are raised to FL135 during parachute operations.

 parashute oulu

 *picture from AIP Finland

OVE, parachute dropping in two minutes. Will drop three parachutes from FL100.


OVE, request parachute drop

OVE, parachute drop approved. After drop east sector, join right base runway 30.


Oulun torni, OHCVE, oppilashyppylento, 6 henkeä, 2 oppilasta 3300 jalkaa ja hyppymestari lentopinnalta 100. Tiedotus M, 1006. Pyydän rullata.

OVE, rullaa odotuspaikalle kiitotie 30. Selvä lähialueen päälle, pohjois- ja itäsektorit, yläraja lentopinta 100. Koodaa 2567.

When ready for parachute drop:

OVE, valmiina pudottamaan kaksi hyppääjää.

OVE, selvä linjalle, saa pudottaa hyppääjät. Pudotuksen jälkeen itäsektori, liity loppuosalle kiitotie 30 suoraan.



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