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February 6, 2017

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Qatar Airways flies world’s longest route

QATAR Airways launched the world’s longest scheduled commercial service with its inaugural flight from Doha to Auckland taking off eight minutes early yesterday, a company spokeswoman said.

The Boeing 777 flight QR920 left the Qatari capital at 05:02 local time and was set to land in New Zealand at 07:30 local time today.

The flight will take 16 hours and 20 minutes, pass over 10 time zones, five countries and travel 14,535 kilometers before reaching Auckland.

But even that flying time may be looked on jealously by passengers on the return flight which, due to high-altitude winds, will take 17 hours and 30 minutes, the airline website said.

This will make it the world’s longest passenger service by flying time, tracking website flightradar24 said.

Qatar Airways did not immediately have a figure for the number of passengers who boarded yesterday, but it is believed there are four pilots and 15 crew on the plane.

In March last year, Emirates launched what was then thought to be the world’s longest non-stop scheduled commercial flight of 14,200 kilometers from Dubai to Auckland.


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