It will be exactly eighteen years ago on Sunday that British Airways (BA) performed the last scheduled flight with the supersonic passenger plane Concorde.

On October 24, 2003, a flight was made from New York to London, which took the Concorde about three hours.

In 2021, that flight takes about 7 hours.

Interested in aviation?


Get notified on news.

The Concorde was the brainchild of the United Kingdom and France.

In 1969, after many years of development, the aircraft took to the skies for the first time.

The aircraft reached more than twice the speed of sound, so that travel times were short.

Due to the relatively narrow hull and interior width, there was 'only' room for a hundred passengers.

In addition, the device was very noisy, especially by current standards.

Finally, tickets for the Concorde were expensive.

For a return ticket to Washington you quickly lost the contemporary equivalent of 2,500 euros.

In the end, only twenty copies of the Concorde were built.

In addition to BA, Air France also flew the aircraft.

One also wore Singapore Airlines livery, the result of a partnership with BA.

Due to increasing maintenance costs, the airlines got into trouble with the Concorde.

A crash of an Air France example in Paris in July 2000, killing all on board, heralded the end of the Concorde.

The worldwide decline in air traffic after the 9/11 attacks gave the supersonic aircraft the final push.

In April 2003, BA and Air France agreed to discontinue the Concorde.

The last flight was carried out six months later.

The aircraft was awaited at Heathrow Airport by a large crowd of enthusiasts.

A special grandstand was built for the occasion.


#OnThisDay 2003: Concorde made its last commercial flight from New York to Heathrow airport.


AuthorBBCArchiveMoment of places08: 57 - October 24, 2019