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How Long Is the Flight to the Bahamas? (Updated for 2024)

How Long Is the Flight to the Bahamas? (Updated for 2024)

In futuristic sci-fi show The Orville, a character describes the marvels of instantaneous travel, saying “You can take a breath in New York and exhale it in Paris.”

While teleportation is way in the future (and maybe a bad idea anyway), there is still something enticing about speedy transportation from one environment to another.

Whatever you feel about the current state of transportation technology, it’s still pretty cool that you can walk into the Newark Airport on a damp, gray winter day and emerge in a sunny island paradise just three and a half hours later.

How Long Is a Flight to the Bahamas?

How long it’ll take you to get from where you are to the Bahamas, of course, depends on where you are when you’re starting. We’ve sketched out a few sample itineraries to see just how long it’ll take you to get from where you are now to your tropical escape.

For all of these, we’re assuming a landing in Nassau. It’s the largest city in the Bahamas and the location where most carriers land. You can get flights directly to the Out Islands, but they’ll almost always cost more and take longer.

From Florida

A plain flying towards a city skyline during sunset, a concept image for the guide that tackles the question "how long is the flight to the Bahamas?"

Michael O’Keene/Shutterstock

Miami to Nassau is less than 200 miles as the crow flies. It’s not surprising that you can fly to the Bahamas from multiple Florida cities in just a couple hours.

The flight from either Miami or Fort Lauderdale is just an hour. The length is short enough that some people even plan day trips to the Bahamas. Coming from Tampa or Orlando? You’ll still get there in under two hours.

Ironically, if you are coming from Jacksonville near the state border, you’ll probably take as long to get to Nassau as a friend leaving from New York. That is because there are no direct flights from JAX, and you’ll have to make a pit stop in Miami.

From New York

On those dreary days when you’re sloshing to the office through gray city slush, an escape to white sand beaches has a lot of appeal.

If you’re near the tilting point, maybe this will push you into the decision: there are direct flights from all the major airports in the area, and a nonstop flight is just three hours long. You can be on the beach in Salt Cay in time to watch the sunset.

From Philadelphia

Philadelphia is a major international hub, so there are multiple quick flights from here to the Bahamas. If you take American Airlines, you can catch a nonstop flight that takes about three hours. If you don’t mind doubling your travel time, you can save a bit of money flying Spirit instead.

They partner with Bahamasair to take you from Philadelphia to the Bahamas with a brief layover in Ft. Lauderdale. Depending on the length of your layover, your total flight will be five to six hours.

From Atlanta

Airplanes of Delta Airlines parked in the Atlanta Airport while waiting for the flights schedule to Bahamas, an image for a guide about flight duration towards the two areas.

Atlanta, Georgia – April 2, 2019: Delta Air Lines airplanes at Atlanta Airport (ATL) in Georgia./Markus Mainka/Shutterstock

Atlanta is one of Delta’s hubs, and that airline offers direct flights from there to the Bahamas. The trip, with no stops, will take you about two hours from gate to gate.

American Airlines, Spirit, and JetBlue also offer flights from Atlanta to the Bahamas, all with layovers in either Ft. Lauderdale or Miami. These flights typically run from four to six hours once you factor your pit stop in.

From San Francisco

If you are heading to the Bahamas from the Bay Area, prepare to spend a day on each end of your trip just traveling. The fastest flight from San Francisco to Nassau takes around eight hours. You’ll have a stop in the middle, typically either in Miami or Fort Lauderdale.

This is one of the reasons more people from the East Coast head to the Caribbean. If you’re already in SF, you may as well head to Hawaii instead, since that’s just a six hour flight.

What about the Out Islands?

While Nassau is the most common place to land, it’s far from the only choice. There are also flights available from cities in the US to Eleuthera, Exuma, Bimini, and other islands.

A trip from Tampa to George Town on Eleuthera will take about four and a half to five hours. This flight includes a layover in the middle unless you are shelling out the money for a direct chartered flight.

Surprisingly, you won’t spend much more time going straight from New York to Bimini International. The flight there averages just over five hours, with a switch from United to Silver Airways in Ft. Lauderdale.

Taking the Long Way

One intriguing option: what if you could make your flight longer? A number of Redditors have talked about requesting extended layovers to get a mini-trip in the middle of their travel.

This can be done a couple of ways. The first is to look for flights that already have a long layover in the middle, and finding the one that fits your schedule.

As an example, if you are going the Bahamas from San Francisco, you’ll find a number of flights that use the Las Vegas hub at Harry Reid International. Some of these flights include layovers that are as long as eight hours.

This can be long enough to meet a local friend for a meal or take in a quick tour between your flights. The second option is to contact the airline or a travel agent directly and ask for an extended layover.

American Airline rules allow up to an eight-hour layover on domestic flights and a 23 hour, 59 minute layover on international ones. Other airlines may have different policies. Study the airline’s most commonly used hubs to find places you may have a chance to visit.

The third option is just to book a multi-city trip. While this is likely the most expensive way to get a longer layover, it is also the one that makes it easiest to get the exact trip you want.

Frequently Asked Questions

A woman wearing a beach dress while standing on a wooden dock, waving her hand on a passing airplane above, a concept image for a guide about how long is the flight to the Bahamas.

Alexander Chaikin/Shutterstock

Have another question? We address some of the most common ones below.

Can you fly nonstop to the Bahamas?

A number of airlines offer nonstop flights from originating airports all over the country. Starting points include Orlando, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Newark, Philadelphia, and Dallas/Fort Worth.

How far is Bahamas from Miami in hours?

The flight from Miami to Nassau takes just one hour.

How many hours does it take to get to The Bahamas?

One of the great things about the Bahamas is how quickly you can get there. It takes just an hour from Miami. Newark to Nassau is just over three hours.

How far is Bahamas from Florida by flight?

The most commonly used airport in the Bahamas in Nassau is just 184 miles from Miami.

So, Just How Long Does It Take to Fly to the Bahamas?

Even though this is one of those “how long is a piece of string” questions, the answers are surprisingly consistent. From most places in the continental US, you are looking at a trip under three hours.

This is short enough that, if you plan well, you only have half a day’s travel on either end of your trip. Do all your prep in advance and opt for the first flight in and the last flight out, and you can maximize your sunny days in paradise.