With over 9,000 miles between Chicago and eastern Australia, direct flights can take over 20 hours to cross the Pacific Ocean and reach popular Australian destinations like Sydney and Melbourne. But by understanding the factors that affect flight times, you can find the quickest routes and most comfortable journeys.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Nonstop flights from Chicago O’Hare International Airport to Sydney Airport take around 20 hours 30 minutes on average.

Flight Duration Factors

When it comes to flying from Chicago to Australia, the flight duration can vary depending on several factors. Understanding these factors can help you better plan your trip and manage your expectations.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the key factors that influence the duration of this long-haul journey.

Distance and Aircraft Speed

The distance between Chicago and Australia is approximately 9,000 miles (14,500 kilometers). The aircraft’s speed plays a significant role in determining the flight duration. Most long-haul flights travel at an average speed of around 550 miles per hour (885 kilometers per hour).

Therefore, a direct flight from Chicago to Australia would take approximately 16-18 hours.

Did you know? The Boeing 787 Dreamliner, a popular aircraft for long-haul flights, can reach speeds of up to 600 miles per hour (965 kilometers per hour), reducing the flight time slightly.

Number of Connecting Flights

Another factor that can affect the flight duration is the number of connecting flights. Some flights from Chicago to Australia may involve one or more layovers, increasing the total travel time. The duration of layovers can vary, ranging from a few hours to overnight stays.

Pro Tip: If you prefer a direct flight, you can check with different airlines to find out if they offer non-stop flights between Chicago and major cities in Australia such as Sydney or Melbourne.

Tailwinds and Headwinds

Tailwinds and headwinds can impact the overall flight duration. Tailwinds are winds blowing in the same direction as the aircraft, which can increase its groundspeed and shorten the travel time. On the other hand, headwinds blow against the aircraft’s direction, slowing it down and potentially extending the flight duration.

Fun Fact: The Jet Stream, a high-altitude air current, can have a significant impact on flight times. When flying from Chicago to Australia, the Jet Stream can either assist or hinder the aircraft, depending on its position and intensity.




Chicago to East Coast Australia

Traveling from Chicago to Australia is an exciting adventure that requires careful planning, especially when it comes to the length of the flight. The duration of the flight can vary depending on the specific destination on the East Coast of Australia.

Let’s explore the flight times to three popular cities: Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane.


If you’re heading to Sydney from Chicago, be prepared for a long journey. The flight from Chicago to Sydney typically takes around 18 to 20 hours, depending on the route and any layovers. This non-stop flight covers a distance of approximately 9,000 miles.

It’s the longest flight you’ll encounter when traveling to Australia from Chicago, but the experience is well worth it once you arrive in this vibrant city.


For those planning a trip to Melbourne, you can expect a similar flight duration as Sydney. The flight from Chicago to Melbourne usually takes about 18 to 20 hours, with non-stop options available. Melbourne is known for its cultural scene, stunning architecture, and delicious food, making it a must-visit city on the East Coast of Australia.


If your destination is Brisbane, you’ll be pleased to know that the flight time from Chicago is slightly shorter compared to Sydney and Melbourne. On average, the flight from Chicago to Brisbane takes around 16 to 18 hours.

Brisbane, with its warm climate, beautiful beaches, and vibrant nightlife, offers a unique Australian experience that shouldn’t be missed.

It’s important to note that these flight times are approximate and can vary depending on factors such as weather conditions, air traffic, and the specific airline you choose. It’s always a good idea to check with your airline for the most up-to-date information on flight durations.

For more information on flights and travel tips, websites such as Qantas and United Airlines provide helpful resources and booking options. Remember to pack your essentials, stay hydrated, and make the most of your journey as you embark on this unforgettable adventure from Chicago to the East Coast of Australia!

Chicago to West Coast Australia

When it comes to traveling from Chicago to the west coast of Australia, there are a few key destinations to consider – Perth and Adelaide. Let’s take a closer look at the flight durations for these two cities:


Perth, the capital city of Western Australia, is a popular destination for travelers seeking beautiful beaches, vibrant city life, and unique wildlife experiences. The flight from Chicago to Perth typically takes around 19-20 hours, depending on the route and any layovers.

This is a long journey, so be sure to pack some entertainment and comfortable essentials to make the flight more enjoyable.

During the flight, you’ll have plenty of time to catch up on your favorite movies, read a good book, or even get some work done. Don’t forget to stretch your legs and stay hydrated throughout the journey to minimize jet lag upon arrival.


Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, is known for its vibrant food and wine scene, beautiful parklands, and cultural festivals. While not as far west as Perth, the flight from Chicago to Adelaide still covers a significant distance.

On average, the flight duration from Chicago to Adelaide is around 20-23 hours, depending on the airline and any layovers.

During the long flight, it’s a good idea to take advantage of the in-flight amenities and entertainment options provided by the airline. This will help to keep you comfortable and entertained throughout the journey.

Additionally, make sure to pack some snacks and stay hydrated to keep your energy levels up during the flight.

Both Perth and Adelaide offer unique experiences and attractions, so no matter which destination you choose, you’re in for an amazing adventure. Before booking your flight, be sure to check with airlines for any updated travel restrictions, visa requirements, and health and safety guidelines for international travel.

Chicago to Central Australia

Are you planning a trip from Chicago to Australia? If so, you may be wondering how long the flight will be. The exact duration of the flight will depend on your final destination within Australia. Let’s take a look at two popular destinations in Central Australia and the approximate flight times from Chicago.

Alice Springs

Alice Springs, located in the heart of Australia, is a popular destination for those seeking to explore the country’s rugged and beautiful Outback. The flight from Chicago to Alice Springs typically involves one or two layovers, depending on the airline and route.

On average, the total travel time can range from 22 to 26 hours, including layovers.

It’s worth noting that the flight duration may vary depending on factors such as weather conditions, air traffic, and the specific flight route chosen. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to check with your airline for the most up-to-date information on flight times.

Uluru/Ayers Rock

Another popular destination in Central Australia is Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock. This iconic red rock formation is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and attracts visitors from around the globe. The flight from Chicago to Uluru typically involves multiple layovers and can take anywhere from 24 to 30 hours, including layover time.

Due to the remote location of Uluru, there may be limited direct flight options. As a result, travelers may need to book flights with layovers in major Australian cities such as Sydney or Melbourne. Keep in mind that these layovers can add a significant amount of time to your overall travel duration.

When planning your trip from Chicago to Central Australia, it’s important to consider the time difference between the two locations. Central Australia is typically 14 to 16 hours ahead of Chicago, depending on daylight saving time.

This means that you may experience some jet lag upon arrival, so it’s a good idea to give yourself some time to adjust before diving into your Australian adventures.

For more information on flights and travel options, you can visit the websites of major airlines such as Qantas, United, or Virgin Australia. These websites provide detailed information on flight schedules, layovers, and booking options.

Now that you have an idea of the flight durations from Chicago to Central Australia, you can start planning your adventure Down Under. Whether you choose to explore the unique landscapes of Alice Springs or marvel at the majestic Uluru, your journey from Chicago to Central Australia is sure to be an unforgettable experience.


With ultra long-haul flights connecting Asia, Australia, and North America, the right aircraft, route, and tailwinds can make all the difference in shortening travel times across the Pacific. By understanding the major factors that determine flight duration from Chicago to Australia, you can find the fastest and most enjoyable options to suit your trip.

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