Transport Airlines

World’s shortest flight of about 47 seconds set to launch between Scottish islands

Jan 12, 2013 3:00 am

Skift Take

The regional Scottish airline Loganair signed a three-year contract to operate this puddle jump just as Singapore Airlines finalizes plan to drop the world’s longest flight between Singapore and Los Angeles.

— Samantha Shankman

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Calflier   / Flickr

Loganair on Sanday Orkney Island. The airport is in the background. Calflier / Flickr


A Scottish airline has won a contract to operate the world’s shortest flight, on a route in the Orkney Islands where journeys can last as little as 47 seconds.

The regional airline Loganair will continue to operate flights between Westray and Papa Westray islands, fending off competition from two rival operators.

The distance between the two locations stands at slightly more than a mile and can be travelled in as little as 47 seconds depending on the direction of the wind.

The Scottish airline has been running the world’s shortest flight since the start of its inter-island service in the region in 1967. The flight between Westray and Papa Westray is currently priced at £21 return.

The eight-seat Islander aircraft has also transported pupils from Papa Westray to Westray Junior High in 2009, when the ferry service between the islands was withheld during its refurbishment.

The travel writer Bill Bryson has previously cited Papa Westray as one of his favourite places in Britain.

The new three-year contract begins in April and the service will provide both passenger and freight transportation.

At the other end of the spectrum, the world’s longest lasting flight, running between Singapore and Los Angeles on Singapore Airlines, is expected to stop its services at the end of this year.

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