How far is Detroit from Columbus? Here's the quick answer if you are able to make this entire trip by car without stopping.
Nonstop drive: 203 miles or 327 km
Driving time: 3 hours, 20 minutes
Realistically, you'll probably want to add a buffer for rest stops, gas, or food along the way. To get a better idea of how long this trip would really be, scroll down to calculate how many hours it would take if you drive with stops.
Now let's assume you have a private jet and you can fly in the fastest possible straight line between Columbus, Ohio and Detroit, Michigan. Because of the curvature of the Earth, the shortest distance is actually the "great circle" distance, or "as the crow flies" which is calculated using an iterative Vincenty formula.
Flight distance: 164 miles or 263 km
Flight time: 41 minutes
The straight line flight distance is 39 miles less than driving on roads, which means the driving distance is roughly 1.2x of the flight distance.
Your plane flies much faster than a car, so the flight time is about 1/3th of the time it would take to drive.
This is a relatively short flight in a private plane, but you might be planning to book a commercial flight. In that case, your travel time would really need to include how many minutes to get to your local airport, wait for security, board and taxi on the runway, land at the other airport, and get to your destination. Scroll down to see a more realistic calculation that takes into account all these factors to get a more accurate estimate of your actual flight time.
Let's say you're actually planning a road trip to Detroit, and you want to stop on the way to explore. If it's a real road trip, you might want to check out interesting places along the way, or maybe eat at a great restaurant. That's what Trippy is perfect for, helping you figure out travel plans in detail.
Road trip: 1 day of driving
With the full itinerary planned out, we can estimate your total travel time for this trip.
Travel time: 5 hours on the road
Start in Columbus.
Drive for about 48 minutes, then stop in Mount Gilead and stay for about 1 hour.
Next, drive for another 44 minutes then stop in Upper Sandusky and stay for 1 hour.
Drive for 37 minutes then stop in Fostoria and stay for 1 hour.
Drive for 52 minutes then stop in Toledo (Ohio) and stay for 1 hour.
Drive for 1 hour then stop in Windsor (Ontario) and stay for 1 hour.
Finally, drive for about 47 minutes and arrive in Detroit.
To see all the details on this itinerary, including recommended restaurants, hotels, and things to do along the way, check out the full road trip planner:
In the quick calculation above, we assumed you had a private plane and just wanted to know the time in the air from city to city. But for most of us, we're going to be flying on a commercial airline (whether it's first class or coach). So that means we really need to account for all the extra travel time getting to the airport, waiting for our flight, and making it to the destination.
To give you a better estimate of real-life travel, we've put together a flight itinerary with actual airports. Eventually you'll be able to customize this plan, choosing your own airports and flights. But for now, here's an example we've selected to give you an idea of how traveling might work between airports.
Departure airport: Port Columbus International Airport (CMH)
Arrival airport: Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW)
With the airports selected, we can estimate the travel time to and from the airport, based on how far the airport is from downtown.
Getting to the airport: 19 minutes
Getting to your destination: 54 minutes
Now finally, let's look at an actual flight from CMH connecting through MDW and arriving at DTW flying on Southwest Airlines. We can figure out how long it would take to fly including take-off and landing, time to taxi on the runways, and an average layover time of about 2 hours.
Initial flight time: 1 hour, 6 minutes
Connecting airport: Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW)
Connection flight time: 1 hour, 2 minutes
So now we can finally get an idea of the total travel time from Columbus to Detroit including time spent getting to and from the airports, roughly 2 hours at the departure airport for TSA security lines and waiting at the gate, plus the connecting flight with a 2-hour layover.
Total travel time: 7 hours
To see the details on this flight plan, including recommended airports, airline, and route, check out the flight planner:
Trippy has a ton of information that can help you plan your trip to Detroit, Michigan. Start by reading the Trippy page on where to stay in Detroit. A great place to eat might be Slows Bar-B-Q. Trippy members can suggest things to do in Detroit like Comerica Park. Check out some of the questions people have asked about Detroit like What is your favorite restaurant in Detroit?. Click the button below to explore Detroit in detail.
The distance is the same either way if you're flying a straight line (or driving the same roads back and forth). But for a real trip, there can be plenty of differences so go ahead and check the reverse directions to get the distance from Detroit to Columbus, or go to the main page to calculate the distance between cities.
If you happen to know Columbus, don't forget to help other travelers and answer some questions about Columbus!