Sometimes, when travelling by air, you may need to make a choice, like which type of flight should you fly to your destination. Here, a non-stop flight is one such type that can transport you from one city to another without having to stop at any other city in-between. If you have not heard of a non-stop flight before, do not worry. You will find useful information in this travel guide.
In this blog, we are going to take an in-depth look at non-stop flights and get to know more about the flight’s service, including benefits and drawbacks for travellers.
What is a Non-Stop Flight?
In air travel, a non-stop flight is a flight of an airline carrier that does not include in-between scheduled stops along the route. In other words, a non-stop flight does not make any stops, not even in another city. Such flights simply transport you from the origin airport to your final destination airport.
Non-stop flights are operated by airline carriers both on domestic and international routes. For example, American Airlines serves non-stop international flights from Phoenix in Arizona, USA to London in the United Kingdom. Here, the flight departs from the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and lands when it arrives at the Heathrow Airport in London. There are no stops along the route.
Bear in mind there may be an exception where there is a technical difficulty occurring in the aircraft, and it needs to make an emergency landing at an airport before arriving at the destination airport. Since, this is an unscheduled layover caused due to an emergency, it would be a different situation. Such a situation is usually described as a stopover with regard to direct flights.
How are Non-Stop Flights Different from Direct Flights?
A non-stop and a direct flight are not really the same, which many people might think of these to be. In fact, there is a slight difference between the two.
A non-stop flight typically does not include any scheduled stops after departing from the origin airport and until it arrives at the destination airport. However, there may be certain emergency, where a non-stop flight may need to make an unscheduled landing at a nearby airport along the route.
A direct flight, on the other hand, is a flight that may include one or more scheduled stops between the origin and destination airports. Such stops can often be a stopover for refuelling or change of flight at an intermediate airport along the flight’s route. Thus, passengers may or may not get off the plane when it lands at an airport before arriving at the final destination. Passengers that don’t require to change their flights will remain seated on the aircraft when the flight departs from the airport.
Only passengers that need to change their flights can disembark at a stopover airport and continue their journey. While passengers that need to board their connecting flights can do so at one of these stopover airports.
For passengers that have connecting flights will also have the stopover cities mentioned on their flight tickets and the itinerary. This further ensures that you do not get off at the wrong airport, if you have to change your flight.
What are the Benefits or Downsides of Flying Non-Stop Flights?
Non-stop flights may have a few advantages and/or disadvantages that may depend on from one traveller’s needs to that of another.
Benefits of Non-stop Flights
If you need to get to your destination quickly, then a non-stop flight will be your ideal choice. This is also usually preferred by passengers that are travelling for urgent or emergency situations, such as seeking medical treatment or attending someone’s funeral, or perhaps, flying on a time-constraint business trip.
So, apart from getting to your desired destination city as quickly as possible by air, there is no other significant advantage of non-stop flights.
Drawbacks of Non-stop Flights
Money-wise, non-stop flights sometimes, can be a little more expensive than direct flights. This is because you are paying a premium just to get to your destination quickly, and also, for availing services which the airliner offers you throughout your trip.
In addition, if the route is served by only one airline carrier, that carrier has an advantage of charging more to their customers, and customers can’t help, but pay the price. Also, if there are several airline carriers serving the same route, then these airline carriers may drop the price of their airfares in order to get more customers. Thus, this shows how prices of airfares for the same route can fluctuate because of monopoly or competition.
Direct flights, which include scheduled stops on their routes, may also charge additional fees for connecting flights, which are usually included in the price of their flight tickets.
Another downside of a non-stop flight over a direct flight is that non-stop flights may not be ideal for travellers that are on world tours. Thus, non-stop flights will have a disadvantage here.
Usually, travellers that love to take a tour of several cities around the world, will certainly require multiple stopovers on the same itinerary, instead of paying hundreds of dollars for booking several one-way flights. For example, while travelling from New York City to Paris, you may wish to spend some quality time in London, Italy and Berlin. Having stopovers with connecting flights on the same itinerary will allow to explore these cities in different countries for a couple of days, before boarding your flight to Paris, which is your final destination city.
Non-stop flights and direct flights are thus, two different types of flights which are served by airline carriers. So, you should not be confused with these terms.
If time is your constraint, you can always choose a non-stop flight over a direct flight for your journey. Although you may be required to pay a little more for your airfare, but that would suffice your in-flight experience, since you will be offered services and facilities to comfort you during your trip.