When you think of flying what do you imagine? Long journeys cooped up in economy class or luxurious business class. Yet how much have you thought about short haul instead of long haul? What about some of the shortest flights in the world.
The shortest flights in the world
It is well known that in the modern day the shortest commercial flight takes place in Scotland, between two Orkney Islands, Westray and Papa Westray. Taking less than 2 minutes there is barely time to fasten your seat belt. On some days with favourable weather conditions this flight has been known to take 47 seconds! Such a unique and short flight is difficult to find on the big flight search sites that you have to go to the Logan Air website to make a flight booking.
Yet this famous flight is a domestic flight in a remote area, what of international flights? What is the shortest international flight? An Austrian airline likes to claim this honour.
The shortest international flight in the world
The airline People’s Viennaline offers an eight minute (yes 8 minutes!) international connection between St Gallen-Altenrhein in Switzerland to Friedrichshafen in Germany. A short haul flight like this would set you back about €40. Should you wish to stay on the flight the plane goes onto Cologne.
Environmentalists may be in uproar about the pollution for such a flight however the airline claims the emissions of the flight are about the same as those created if you were to take the one hour drive around the lake between these two destinations.
Well these are certainly short journeys and a little shorter than any of the flights I’ve taken. From memory the shortest flight I took was with Qantas between Sydney and Newcastle which lasted less than 20 minutes. That’s right, no time for refreshments even though I was on a good sized aircraft.
So what of other short haul flights that have existed over time?
I was close to experiencing but a little late in time when I was based in Saudi Arabia. There used to be a short flight between Dhahran (Saudi Arabia) and Bahrain Manama Airport which took 5 minutes. However by the time I was living in the Middle East (2000 – 2001) a fabulous causeway across the water was built which made this a pleasurable drive (Customs delay permitting).
A few other notable short haul flights include:
A quick flight on Aer Arann in Ireland between Connemara and Inishmaan takes a whole 6 minutes and covers just over 10 miles.
Enjoy your time around Hawaii with a 10 minute journey between Hoolehua (Molokai) and Kalaupapa.
A trip to the Caribbean for a mere 2.4 mile journey between Caye Chapel and Caye Caulker taking a whole 2 minutes.
So is it really worth these short haul flights? All that time to get to the airport, check-in and wait for boarding? Is it really worth the effort when you could drive or take a boat?