Is the time of air travel really extending?

If you have been travelling by plane for quite a long time and frequently choose the flights to the same destinations, you might feel as if the flights have become longer. Of course, spending time locked inside a plane especially when something is bothering you, might feel like eternity. Yet, is it true that something has been changing in the length of air flights?

What is happening to the air flights?

Actually, it is not just an illusion. A great number of flights offered by various airline companies has been prolonged indeed. You can literally see the difference comparing the same flights offered by the same company during different years.

For instance, take a look at a quite short flight from London to Edinburgh. Almost thirty years ago such a flight took only 1 hour 15 minutes. If you check the time of this flight now, you will see it takes 1 hour 25 minutes. Obviously, the flight takes ten minutes more now.

Why are air flights are taking longer now?

The prolongation of flights might seem counter-intuitive. Certainly, technology has progressed a lot since 1990s and it is unbelievable air flights are getting extended.

One of the most obvious reasons for such a change in the time of flights is the fact there are definitely a way more planes today than it used to be thirty years ago. As you can imagine, it is making the air traffic pretty busy, so new solutions for coordinating flights have to be used. Still, these are not all the reasons for the extending of the time spent on board the plane.

What else is affecting the time spent on a flight?

Flights are getting longer for the sake of economy. The prices for fuel are constantly rising and during the past twenty years, the prices have become nearly twice higher than they used to be. Just like it is true in the case of automobiles travelling with a steady speed, it is also true for planes to spend less fuel without increasing the speed. As a result, the time spent on a flight becomes longer.

Another popular reason is the attempt of airline companies to get better adjusted to schedules and avoid being late. As you can imagine, adding extra time to the flight will certainly make it easier for pilots to reach the destination on time.