Supersonic, Super-Fast Flights Are Coming Soon — If You Can Afford It

Photo: Courtesy of Boom.
If Blake Scholl has his way, supersonic passenger planes that can zip from New York to London in as little as three hours and 15 minutes may soon be a possibility. Scholl, CEO of Denver-based aerospace startup Boom, is working with Richard Branson and Virgin Galactic to create and commercially launch the ultra-fast planes in 2023. Meanwhile, test flights are expected to start late next year, according to New York magazine. The 40-to-50 seat supersonic jet would be able to travel at over twice the speed of sound — that’s almost three times faster than today’s standard planes. Less travel time would be a godsend to anyone who has ever had to suffer through leg-numbing flights over the holidays. Using this service won't be cheap, however. A round-trip ticket would reportedly cost approximately $5,000. That means the souped-up aircraft would likely be used to ferry celebrities and the über-rich at first (read: the 1%). Hopefully, with time — like all innovative, first-of-its-kind tech — these trips would eventually end up dropping in cost, so us normal humans could eventually use it, too. This isn’t the first time that a company has pushed the boundaries of flight. British Airways' Concorde flew the rich and fabulous around the world in little time for approximately $20,000, but it was later discontinued due to high operational costs and a high-profile crash in 2000.
Ed. note: An earlier version of this story said the planes would travel at the speed of sound; they actual would travel at Mach 2.2, which is over twice the speed of sound.

More from Travel

R29 Original Series