On Wednesday, passengers aboard an Emirates Airbus A380 endured the world's longest non-stop commercial flight – a 17 hours 15 minute trip from Dubai to Auckland.

Covering 14,200km (8,824 miles) in a single leg, this is a jaw-dropping flight and record-breaking time hint at a new era in trade, travel and global connectivity. Of course, increased time, unlike increased distance, is not the goal here. Emirates' is working to reduce future airtime with new technologies, critical planning and meticulous consideration of winds.

Alas, too, records are made to be broken. Later this year Emirates' new direct route from Dubai to Panama City is expected to take 17 hours 35 minutes.

We know the airline has onboard lounges, spas and showers for those who can afford first class. But for the rest of us, here's hoping there're heaps of cracking films on the inflight entertainment system. Otherwise 17 hours could feel like a really, really long time.