Oct. 21, 2019, 4:57 a.m. EDT

Here is the world’s shortest (1.5 minutes) and longest (19.5 hours) commercial flight

One airline is currently testing what will become the world’s longest commercial flight

By Jacob Passy


Getty Images
Passengers prepare to board a Loganair-operated Twin Otter plane from Barra Airport in Scotland. Loganair’s flight between Westray and Papa Westray in Scotland is the shortest flight in the world.

It very well could take you longer to read this story than it would to ride on the world’s shortest scheduled passenger flight.

Loganair, a Scottish regional airline, holds that title thanks to its itinerary between Westray and Papa Westray , two of the Orkney Islands located north of Great Britain. The flight, which travels 1.7 miles (2.7 kilometers), lasts only 1.5 minutes in the air. The cost of a one-way ticket starts at 17 pounds (roughly $22).

That’s a blip compared to the 19.5-hour flight that Australian carrier Qantas (FRA:DE:QAN)   (OTC:QABSY)   is testing this week . The 10,000-mile nonstop voyage on a Boeing (NYS:BA)   787-9 from New York to Sydney will be the world’s longest flight.

The title was previously held by the New York-Singapore route flown by Singapore Airlines (OTC:SINGF) . That trip takes nearly 18 hours — some 1,080 times longer than the Loganair flight, give or take a minute.

The Westray-Papa Westray route isn’t the only short flight that Loganair offers. The journey between Eday and Kirkwall, another two of the Orkney Islands, takes a staggering 10 minutes to complete.

Looking to take a short trip closer to home? United Airlines (NAS:UAL)  operates the shortest flight in the continental U.S. , a 16-minute trip between San Francisco and Santa Rosa, located in the Sonoma County wine region. (Sightseeing flight operator Greater Toronto Airways boasts the shortest flight in North America , a 10-minute route between Toronto and Niagara.)

In Hawaii, travelers can take a 15-minute flight between the Kalaupapa and Ho’olehua airports on Moloka’i for as little as $50 on Mokulele Airlines.

Of course, flying is particularly bad for the environment — aircraft are responsible for 2.5% of total global carbon dioxide emissions. So travelers concerned about their carbon footprint may want to consider other means of travel — for instance, a 25-minute car ferry also runs between Westray and Papa Westray.

The U.S. Global Jets ETF (PSE:JETS)  , which tracks airline operators worldwide, has dropped in value roughly 5% over the last three months, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW:DJIA)  and S&P 500 Index (S&P:SPX)   are down 1.4% and .38% respectively over that same time.

This story was updated on Oct. 18, 2019.

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