The world’s shortest international flight of just eight minutes took off on Wednesday, bringing travelers across the border from Switzerland to Germany on an Austrian airline.
The Austrian People’s Air Group started up its new flight connection from St. Gallen-Altenrhein, Switzerland to Friedrichshafen over Lake Constance at 6:30am on Wednesday.
Travelling just 20 kilometres, the journey is over in what may feel like a blink of an eye, or eight minutes to be exact. The airline will travel the route each way twice a day. A one-way ticket between the two stops costs €40.
Alternatively, travelers could also drive the roughly 63 kilometres between the two airports by car around Lake Constance, which would take an hour. Or they could sit through a two-hour lakeside train ride.
The stop in Friedrichshafen is meant to be a layover for passengers going to or from Cologne-Bonn airport.
But as quaint as an eight-minute flight may sound, it has also faced controversy for the disproportionate amount of fuel it needs to consume for such a short trip, as well as for the noise generated during take-off and landing.
Previously, the world’s shortest international flight was a ten minute journey between the Austrian capital Vienna and the Slovakian capital Bratislava, launched by the low-cost Austrian airline FlyNiki. It’s primarily used by travelers who have connecting flights from Vienna.