How long does it really take to fly from New Orleans to San Francisco? Here's a sample itinerary for a commercial flight plan. If you want to know the total travel time to reach San Francisco, you need to include time at the airports. Eventually, you'll be able to customize this itinerary to select other nearby airports and choose your preferred airline.
Sunday, 2:45 pm: start in New Orleans
drive for about 34 minutes
most airlines recommend you get to the airport at least 90 minutes before your flight, so arrive by 4:14 pm at the latest
3:19 pm: Louis Armstrong New Orleans International (MSY)
if you need to check luggage, make sure you do it at least 30-60 minutes before departure, or in this case, by 4:44 pm
3:49 pm: get your boarding pass and go through TSA security
allow enough time for long security lines during busy travel seasons or holidays, and prepare for the wait time
4:49 pm: arrive at the gate
once you're ready to board, you can get something to eat in the airport or just relax near the gate
5:19 pm: prepare for boarding
check your boarding pass for your group number or listen to the gate agent as they announce boarding, some airlines require you to be in the boarding area 10-15 minutes before departure or risk losing your seat
5:34 pm: board United Air Lines Inc. flight
you can scroll down to view other airlines that fly this route
5:44 pm: this is your scheduled departure time
but this flight is usually delayed by an average of 28 minutes
6:12 pm: so this is your actual departure time
it takes the plane an average of 24 minutes to taxi to the runway
6:36 pm: wheels up! take-off from MSY
fly for about 4.5 hours in the air
8:58 pm (local time): San Francisco International (SFO)
San Francisco is 2 hours behind New Orleans
so the time in New Orleans is actually 10:58 pm
taxi on the runway for an average of 11 minutes to the gate
9:09 pm (local time): arrive at the gate at SFO
deboard the plane, and claim any baggage
if you're renting a car, check if you need to take a shuttle to car rental agency, otherwise you can ride in a cab, limo, or Uber for about 33 minutes to your destination
9:42 pm (local time): arrive in San Francisco
Total travel time: 9 hours
How far is San Francisco from New Orleans? Here's the quick answer if you have a private jet and you can fly in the fastest possible straight line.
Flight distance: 1,925 miles or 3099 km
Flight time: 4 hours, 17 minutes
Compare this to a whole day of commercial travel with the airports and waiting in line for security, which ends up taking a total of 8 hours, 57 minutes.
Flying private is roughly 2.2x faster, and saves you about 5 hours in your total travel time.
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. For a long distance, this appears as a curve on the map, and this is often the route that commercial airlines will take so it's a good estimate of the frequent flyer miles you'll accumulate as well.
This is a medium length flight, so unless you have a nice private jet, you might be booking 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. The flight itinerary at the top of the page takes into account all these factors to get a more accurate estimate of your actual flight time.
Looking at flights on United Air Lines Inc. from MSY to SFO, here's a breakdown of the number of flights available each day:
Based on these statistical results, we chose Sunday for the flight itinerary above.
The most common route is MSY to SFO, so that's what we used in the sample itinerary. However, you may want to explore travel alternatives, you could try one of these routes:
We picked United Air Lines Inc. for your main flight, but there are other airlines that you should check if you're looking for the cheapest flight, or you need a different schedule. Check the websites of these airlines:
Trippy has a ton of information that can help you plan your trip to San Francisco, California. Start by reading the Trippy page on where to stay in San Francisco. If you're looking for a place to stay, you might want to check out Top of the Mark. A great place to eat might be Ike's Place. Trippy members can suggest things to do in San Francisco like Golden Gate Bridge. Check out some of the questions people have asked about San Francisco like Best seafood restaurant in S.F.? Click the button below to explore San Francisco in detail.
The distance is the same either way if you're flying a straight line. But for a real trip, there can be plenty of differences so go ahead and check the reverse flight itinerary to fly from San Francisco to New Orleans, or go to the main page to calculate other flight times.
You can also compare the travel time if you were to drive instead. Get the full itinerary for a New Orleans to San Francisco road trip. Or if you're more interested in the distance, How far is it from New Orleans to San Francisco?
If you happen to know New Orleans, don't forget to help other travelers and answer some questions about New Orleans!