The record for making the longest non-stop flight ever by a commercial airliner is held by Boeing 777-200LR, also known as Worldliner. Mentioned in the Guinness Book of World Records, this Worldliner recorded a non-stop flight of 11,664 nautical miles – a unit of distance for airliners including the sea and land distances.
In simple words, this record-setting Worldliner flew about 13,422.7 miles or 21,601.7 km). It departed from Singapore from 9th November 2005 and landed in London on 10th November 2005, taking about 22 hours and 42 minutes in total. This was by far the farthest flight made by a commercial airliner ever.
The details tell us that the Boeing 777-200LR flew non-stop without refueling. It is powered and engineered by two of the most powerful engines in the world made by General Electric. This longest flight was filled with wonderful experiences by the passengers, including witnessing two sunrises while on the flight.
Covering such a distance, without stopping, is said to be equal to flying almost halfway around the world. Boeing 777 claimed to break the record dating back to 43 years set by a B-52 bomber airplane. This astounding record has made it possible for the aviation industry to imprint in the minds of the investors and consumers alike that no long distances are impossible. Though, in practicality, fewer passengers, more engines, and fuel reservoirs could extend this distance more.
Records show that eight pilots were dedicated to steering this flight and making two turns around half of the world possible. Boeing 777 skipped on the usual route that included flying westward and flew east instead. This resulted in the flight taking more time than usual.
Almost immediately after this Boeing 777 set the record for flying non-stop for the longest distance between two destinations, big commercial airline companies started talking about purchasing this aircraft for their use. Pakistan International Airlines also started talks for making the long non-stop flight between one of its cities – Karachi – to New York.
However, some air routes, such as from Sydney to London, are not quite feasible for even this mammoth plane to make. The winds on this route are very strong, and an airplane with a load full of passengers and cargo would not be able to make it.
Suggestions to utilize this flight for commercial purposes included talks about booking only business-class seats to reduce the passenger load. With less weight, this long haul flight could be covering numerous long distances between two cities.
Australian commercial airliner, Qantas, also started talks with Boeing 777 for using this aircraft with more fuel tanks. Consensus has it that passengers are very willing to aboard such long flights without any stops. However, overcrowding should not be done.
Boeing 777 (Wikipedia)