Quirks of GMT: flight takes off in 2018, lands in 2017

news
03 January 2018

A flight on Monday managed to take passengers 'back in time', taking off in 2018 and landing in 2017 - all because of a mere 10-minute delay in takeoff.

Hawaiian Airlines Flight 446 was scheduled to depart Auckland, New Zealand, on 31 December at 11:55 pm local time on its way to Honolulu. However, an unexpected 10-minute delay meant that it took off at 12:05 am on 1 January 2018.

Thanks to the location of the International Dateline, Honolulu is 23 hours behind Auckland. That meant the nine hour, 10 minutes flight landed at 10:16 am on 31 December 2017.

According to the US National Institute of Standards and Technology, Hawaii is in a time zone that is 10 hours behind Universal Coordinated Time, more commonly known as Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) after the town in England.

It appears Hawaiian Airlines Flight 446 is quite the expert when it comes to "time travel". The same flight that took off on Saturday, 30 December took passengers back a day, by landing in Honolulu on 29 December.

The incident led to a number of comments on social media. ''so i can make two resolution lists for 2018,'' tweeted one passenger.

Others went into scientific detail to show that such an event is hardly unusual; it just happened to get extra notice this time.

Perhaps the most famous literary instance of the quirks of time is in Jules Verne's 19th-century novel 'Around the World in 80 Days', where the protagonist Phineas Fogg thinks he has lost his bet till his servant tells him it is still Thursday in England when he had calculated it to be Friday.





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