Lufthansa has broken its longest flight record for the second time in as many months. The airline’s latest Airbus A350 flight to the Falkland Islands clocked in at 15 hours and 44 minutes, breaking the previous effort by around ten minutes.
We’ve seen many flight records broken during the COVID-19 pandemic. The longest domestic flight record has been broken twice by French carriers. Meanwhile, just this week, TAP Air Portugal completed the longest flight of an Airbus A321LR in service with an airline. While this has been going on, Lufthansa has been working on its longest flight record, breaking it twice in the space of two months.
A new longest flight for Lufthansa
Lufthansa has set a new record for its longest-ever flight with its youngest widebody aircraft. Yesterday, D-AIXP departed from Hamburg at 21:59 Central European Time. The aircraft flew roughly southwest, cruising between 37,000 and 43,000 feet.
When operated in February, the aircraft hugged the South American coast. As such, the over-ocean flight plan looked to be slightly more direct this time around. However, it seems as though perhaps the winds were just a little bit stronger this time around. The aircraft landed in Mount Pleasant at 08:44 local time. According to RadarBox24.com, this gives a total flight time of 15 hours and 44 minutes. The previous attempt clocked in slightly shorter at 15 hours and 36 minutes.
— Sue Luxton (@kelper60) March 31, 2021
Crew rest and passenger swap
Now that the aircraft has arrived in the Falklands, it won’t fly straight back. Only one crew was present on the flight, meaning that the pilots and flight attendants must be suitably rested to fly back. They will remain in quarantine while on the island, which means their total duty time will clock in at around 20 days.
While the same crew will return to Germany, the passengers will be different. On its flight to the Falklands, the plane was carrying 40 members of staff set to relive the current crew of the Polarstern research vessel in addition to some researchers. Returning to Germany, the flight will take the passengers brought out to the Falkland Islands back at the start of February.
The flight back to Germany will likely not break the record for the third time. While flying to Munich, not Hamburg, the flight will still be non-stop if all goes to plan. However, flights heading East are typically shorter than those heading west. As such, the flight will almost certainly be quicker on the way back from the Falkland Islands. While it won’t be carrying any penguins back to Germany, there is a possibility that a stuffed toy that stowed away could be on the return flight.
Are you impressed to see Lufthansa break its longest flight record a second time? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!