Cathay Pacific Airways is planning to reroute their New York to Hong Kong flight to avoid the airspace of Russia and, in turn, introduce the World’s Longest Commercial Passenger Flight in terms of distance.
This decision came as an expected necessity due to the current Russia-Ukraine conflict. For this reason, multiple other airlines have also rerouted some of their scheduled flights in a way so that they do not go across Russia, instead they around it.
After multiple airlines opted for re-routing their flights to avoid Russia, Russia retaliated by closing its skies for several European countries as well as all UK-linked Countries in a tit-for-tat move.
A spokesperson of Hong Kong’s flagship carrier said, “We are always running contingency routings for potential events or scenarios within the world of aviation,”. Also added that the transatlantic route is more favourable than the Pacific route for the ““strong seasonal tailwinds at this time of the year”.
The new air path pans over the Atlantic, parts of Europe and Central Asia, instead of the Pacific, covering 10,357 miles or 16.668 km in around 17 hours. According to the website of Cathay Pacific, the New York-to-Hong Kong flight scheduled for 3 April will be in the air non-stop for 17 hours and 50 minutes.
This timeline and distance will surely surpass the current longest flight in the world, which is the Singapore Airlines flight travelling between Singapore and New York’s JFK International Airport. This flight covers a distance of around 15,343 km or 9,534 miles in 18 hours.
Before 2020, Cathay Pacific Airways operated three round trips between the two destinations daily. However, the number of flights became lesser during the pandemic as the number of passengers declined because of Hong Kong’s strict anti-Covid measures.
From April 1st, flights from a total of 9 countries, including the US, will be permitted to land in Hong Kong just as their government eases off some of the strictest Covid-19 travel restrictions.