Our own Air India has a set a new record for the world’s longest non-stop flight.
Air India’s flight AI173 earlier this week flew 15,300 km from New Delhi to San Francisco through the trans-Pacific route in 14 hours and 30 minutes creating the world record for longest non-stop flight.
Instead of the usual Atlantic route, which is shorter in length Air India used the trans-Pacific route. The trans-Pacific route meant that Air India had to fly an additional 1,400 km. But flying eastwards also meant that the wind was traveling in the same direction of the flight, helping it reach the destination early. The flight took around two hours less to complete and saved 13 tons of fuel.
— Air India (@airindiain) October 23, 2016
By flying over China and the North Pacific Ocean, instead of the Atlantic, flight AI173 was able to take advantage of jet streams flowing in that direction, boosting its ground speed and allowing it to travel a longer distance in a shorter time.
In March, the record for the world’s longest non-stop flight was held by Emirates with its Dubai-Auckland route that covered 14,200 km in around 16-and-a-half hours.
*Fun fact: Because the flight had to cross the international dateline, the flight took off at 4am from Delhi on Oct. 16 and landed in the destination at 6.30 am local time on the same day.