Far, farther, farthest!
In 1929, departing from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, KLM began the world's longest regular scheduled flight, one to Batavia (Indonesia). The trip took thirteen days, but it was impressive nonetheless. Today the trip is made 24 times as quickly, with passengers arriving in Jakarta, formerly known as Batavia, in just under 14 hours. This leaves you a lot more time to enjoy your holiday. We are able to fly more swiftly and travel farther than before. But how far can you actually go?
A direct flight can mean many things
The farthest airport you can reach flying non-stop from Schiphol is Buenos Aires in Argentina (11,436 kilometres). Flying time: 13 hours and 50 minutes. The longest non-stop flight measured in time takes five minutes longer. This will take you to a location 11,352 kilometres away from Schiphol, which is Jakarta, Indonesia. The longest time you can take on a flight from Schiphol with a stopover is flying to Santiago in Chile (some 18 hours to travel 11,982 kilometres), followed by Denpasar Bali (12,157 kilometres in just over 16 hours). But wait a second... The destinations that are the farthest away measured in distance do not involve the flights that take the longest? That's right! And this is not necessarily a consequence of how long the stopover takes. This is due to the fact that aircraft do not fly straight as an arrow, but plan their flight based on the weather, wind directions and regions which cannot be flown across for safety reasons. So a direct flight does not mean flying straight somewhere.
East or west, farthest is best!
Would you like to fly somewhere far off, without having to be on board a plane very long? It will take you 3 hours and twenty minutes to reach Reykjavik via our farthest scheduled flight heading for the far north. Flying far away to the south, east or west will take you quite a bit longer. Not only is Buenos Aires our farthest non-stop destination, it is also the most southern of all airports we fly to. Would you prefer to visit the 'Wild West'? Then book a flight to Vancouver. And for our most eastern destination, you will be travelling to Tokyo.
To infinity and beyond
Qatar Airways is currently record holder for the longest commercial flight, between Doha and Auckland, a distance of 14,535 kilometres. However, the aviation industry is developing at a very rapid pace. Just think: it wasn't even 70 years ago that it took over 25 hours to reach New York from Schiphol, with two stopovers. Nowadays it will take you 'just' eight hours. A start-up company called Boom is busy constructing an aircraft that should be able to fly from London to New York within three-and-a-half hours. And Virgin Galactic is even conducting test flights for commercial space travel. Schiphol does not have any space flights planned as yet, though. Bali is as far as you can go for now. But that should still be a blast.