Over 8,000 Miles: The World’s Longest Airline Routes Revealed

There are 21 non-stop passenger routes over 8,000 miles (12,875 km) this winter. All are bookable, even if only on a limited-time basis. With the latest coronavirus variant doing the rounds, some may be pushed back, but it’s the latest situation as of November 29th. Emirates has more ultra-long-haul flights than any other carrier, while the A350-900 is the leading aircraft.

Emirates A380
Although it doesn’t operate the longest route, Emirates has more ultra-long-haul flights this winter than any other carrier. Photo: Emirates.

A 9,573-mile non-stop route

Singapore to New York JFK with Singapore Airlines is the world’s longest route, as indicated below. The 9,573-mile (15,348 km) route has a block time of nearly 19 hours in both directions. The A350-900ULR operates in a light 161-seat configuration, with 67 in business and 94 in business.

The route switched from Newark, the Star Alliance hub, in 2020. It was expected to revert to the New Jersey airport at the start of this winter. However, it currently isn’t scheduled to resume until March 27th, the first day of summer 2022. If it does, JFK will then end.

Singapore Airlines is one of ten airlines to offer ultra-long-haul service, analyzing data from OAG shows. With more than one in five flights, Emirates has more than any other, followed by Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, Cathay, and Qantas. The latter recently commenced Darwin to Heathrow, temporarily replacing Perth. It costs about AUD$604,000 for a Sydney-Darwin-Heathrow round-trip.

800px-Singapore_Airlines_Airbus_A350-900_(48506538172)
About 90% of ultra-long flights are to/from North America, including Singapore Airlines to JFK, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Photo: BriYYZ via Flickr.

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8,000-mile-plus routes this winter

The list of 21 routes is shown below. These include two that are due to resume on the last day of winter: Houston-Sydney with United and Seattle-Bangalore with American. However, the latter has already been pushed back repeatedly and may well be pushed back again.

Perhaps the most intriguing and less discussed route is Saudia from Jeddah to Los Angeles. With three weekly B777-300ER flights, it’ll operate between December 11th and January 22nd. It’ll leave the Middle East at 05:20 and arrive at 11:00 local time. Meanwhile, despite the rise of Omicron, Delta has no plans to suspend Atlanta to Johannesburg, the world’s 10th longest route.

  1. Singapore Airlines: Singapore to JFK, 9,537mi (15,348km)
  2. Singapore Airlines: Singapore to Los Angeles, 8,770mi (14,113km)
  3. Air India: Bangalore to San Francisco, 8,701mi (14,003km)
  4. Qantas: Darwin to Heathrow (starting in Sydney or Melbourne), 8,620mi (13,872km)
  5. United: Houston to Sydney, 8,596mi (13,834km)
  6. Qantas: Dallas to Sydney, 8,578mi (13,804km)
  7. Philippine Airlines: Manila to JFK, 8,520mi (13,712km)
  8. Singapore Airlines: Singapore to San Francisco, 8,446mi (13,593km)
  9. United: San Francisco to Singapore, 8,446mi (13,593km)
  10. Delta: Atlanta to Johannesburg, 8,439mi (13,581km)
  11. Emirates: Dubai to Los Angeles, 8,339mi (13,420km)
  12. Saudia: Jeddah to Los Angeles, 8,332mi (13,409km)
  13. Qatar Airways: Doha to Los Angeles, 8,306mi (13,367km)
  14. Philippine Airlines: Manila to Toronto, 8,221mi (13,230km)
  15. Emirates: Dubai to Houston, 8,168mi (13,144km)
  16. Emirates: Dubai to San Francisco, 8,103mi (13,041km)
  17. American: Seattle to Bangalore, 8,078mi (13,000km)
  18. Cathay Pacific: Hong Kong to JFK, 8,072mi (12,990km)
  19. United: Newark to Hong Kong, 8,065mi (12,980km)
  20. Qatar Airways: Doha to Houston, 8,045mi (12,952mi)
  21. Emirates: Dubai to Dallas, 8,040mi (12,940km)
Air India Bangalore to San Francisco
When writing, Air India is en route from Bangalore to San Francisco. It currently operates weekly utilizing the B777-200LR routing Delhi-San Francisco-Bangalore-San Francisco-Delhi. Image: Radarbox.com.

The A350 is the most frequently used type

There are over 5,000 8,000-mile-plus flights this winter. The A350-900 has over three in ten flights, with Singapore Airlines, Philippine Airlines, Delta, Cathay Pacific, and Delta all using it. If the A350-1000 is included, over half (51%) of all ultra-long flights are by the A350.

Have you flown any of the routes mentioned in the article? Share your experiences by commenting.

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