Australian flag carrier Qantas Airways is planning to begin test runs of non-stop flights between Sydney and New York and between Sydney and London later this year. The estimated duration of the flight: 19 hours. The test flights on Boeing 787-9s will only include crew and employees, and no tickets will be sold to the public. One of the objectives is to find out if people can really endure such long hours in a plane.
Qantas isn’t new to long haul aviation. Last year it launched a non-stop service between Perth and London that takes about 17 hours and 20 minutes. Its Sydney-Dallas non-stop flight takes about 17 hours and 15 minutes. In fact, folks in Sydney have endured long flights outside of Qantas — a United Airlines flight between the Australian city and Houston takes 17 hours and 20 minutes.
But that isn’t the longest flight by duration. Poor folks who board the Singapore Airlines non-stop flight from Singapore to New York have to spend 18 hours and 25 minutes pretending to read or endure inane conversations. The Qatar Airways flight between Auckland and Doha is not far behind with a duration of 17 hours and 40 minutes. But at least Qatar Airways and Singapore Airlines are the world’s best two airlines, according to Skytrax. Qantas? Ranked 8. The consolation. If one could endure 17 hours or so on a United flight (ranked 68, 10 places behind Indigo), then 19 hours in Qantas should be a breeze, right?