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Cathay Pacific to operate world's longest flight by rerouting its New York-Hong Kong route to avoid Russian airspace

HONG KONG — Cathay Pacific is planning a course for the world's longest commercial flight to reroute its non-stop New York-Hong Kong flight to avoid Russian airspace. ( More...

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Mike Elrod 5
I made the EWR-HKG run 5-8 times per year for a long time. Went a lot of different routes, but never remember one over Europe. Canada, AK, Pacific rim, Japan common non polar trip. 747-4 and 777-200. It would seem that the "rim" route would put diversion airports only available in Russia.
Alan Hume 4
Yes, I agree. Great circle routes are often difficult to envisage, but from that view it would seem more practical to head NE across Canada, skirting Russia around Vladivostok and down along the edge of Japan to Hong Kong. An international pilot may be able to tell us why this isn't feasible, but I suspect it doesn't correlate with existing approved international flightpaths.
Gosh! Another claim to the "world's longest flight"! How can Cathay's rerouting of between 16 and 17 hours even get close to this? Singapore Airlines already had New York to Singapore at over 18 hours. Qatar Airways Auckland to Doha over 18 hours. Then there is Qantas Perth to London, Emirates Auckland to Dubai, Singapore Airlines LA and San Francisco to Singapore, United Houston to Sydney, Qantas Dallas to Sydney, United San Francisco to Bangalore and soon Air New Zealand New York to Auckland, all clocking in between 17 and 18 hours.
LOngest distance. Read paragraph 2 of the story.
Yes, true. I guess I was focusing on the flight time as that tends to be where the interest lies with travellers.
bentwing60 1
Miles are hard to see from the back of the bus but a sunset and sunrise are not.
This doesn't seem to make sense as it would be quicker to go the other way - across the Pacific.
Kevin Cuenca 6
That's not accounting for the Jet Stream. That can easily add 100mph+ to the speed of the plane and decrease fuel consumption and time in the air.
I had allowed for that factor. Hong Kong to NY via the Pacific is west to east and should be downwind.
Correct. And the typical, ie mostly, direction of the stream is west to east. Current global, polar maps are available at
I had allowed for that factor. Going via the Pacific from Hong Kong to NY is downwind. Perhaps they should then come back the other way.
bentwing60 4
The article does not reveal the intended aircraft to be used on the route but the photo infers an A350-1000 and thus an ETOPS issue may be a factor where with an A380 or 748 it would not. only a guess.
strickerje 4
That's what I thought too, and checking the great circle mapper confirmed it - the proposed route adds nearly 4000 km, whereas the Pacific route only adds ~1000. I also assume it's ETOPS limited, since between Japan and Alaska, the only viable alternates would be in Russia.
Daniel Telco 6
Longest flight in earth's history is sitting next to Rosie O'Donnell in business class as she picks her hooves and chews on Buffalo jerky singing along to Justin Beiber on her iPad. I literally tried to light myself aflame with hand santetizer
Mark Kortum 1
Correction: NW to SE, not NE to SW.
Mark Kortum 1
Taken this flight in both directions many times. Route KG varied significantly each time but always crossed some Russian airspace, either from NE to SW or more N to S.


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