WTF Fun Fact 13367 – Shortest Commerical Flight

When we think of air travel, we tend to think of long-haul flights and transcontinental journeys. But there are also short flights. In fact, the world’s shortest commercial flight lasts a mere 57 seconds (sometimes 90).

Where does the shortest commercial flight go?

This unique route connects the Scottish islands of Westray and Papa Westray in the Orkney archipelago.

These two charming islands steeped in history and natural beauty. Situated close to each other, separated only by a narrow stretch of water, these islands provide the backdrop for the world’s shortest airline flight.

Spanning a distance of approximately 1.7 miles (2.7 kilometers), the Westray to Papa Westray flight route has gained worldwide fame for its timing. Operated by Loganair, Scotland’s national airline, this short hop is an essential lifeline for the local community, connecting residents, and providing essential transportation between the two islands.

What it’s like on a 57-second airplane journey

The aircraft employed for this short flight is typically the Britten-Norman Islander, a versatile twin-engine light aircraft. Designed for short-haul regional flights, the Islander offers excellent maneuverability.

Some flights between the islands can last 90 seconds. Regardless of the flight length, passengers experience a thrillingly rapid ascent and descent. However, the brevity of the flight often means that the passengers barely have time to buckle their seatbelts before reaching their destination.

Passengers also get a unique opportunity to take in the breathtaking beauty of the Orkney Islands from an aerial perspective. While the duration of this flight may be short, its significance to the local community cannot be overstated. For the residents of Westray and Papa Westray, this regular air service provides is essential. It’s used for commuting, transporting goods, accessing medical services, and maintaining social connections.

The Westray to Papa Westray flight operates according to a tightly coordinated schedule. Flights typically depart from Westray Airport and arrive at Papa Westray Airport multiple times a day. This ensures that the community has reliable access to this vital transportation link.

To celebrate this extraordinary flight, passengers are presented with a certificate upon completion of the journey. The certificate serves as a unique memento, reminding travelers of their participation in this exceptional aviation experience.

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Source: “What it’s like to fly on the shortest commercial flight in the world, which lasts just 57 seconds” — Business Insider


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