That Time Two Concordes Landed Simultaneously in Orlando

a historic simultaneous landing of Air France & British Airways Concordes occurred in Orlando, Florida, 35 years ago this week. Photo: Orlando International Airport (MCO)

35 years ago this week, on Oct 18, 1982, some aviation history was made in Central Florida when two Concordes, one from Air France, and the other from British Airways, made a dual simultaneous landing at Orlando International Airport (MCO).

It was the first time the famous droop-nosed supersonic passenger jets landed side by side on parallel runways.

But the simultaneous landing was no coincidence, it was a publicity stunt organized by Walt Disney World to hype the arrival of the sponsors of exhibits at Disney’s newly opened Epcot Center’s British and French pavilions.

Both aircraft approached MCO’s 12,000 foot long parallel runways from the south, and touched down 2 seconds apart, to the cheers of 35,000 spectators in attendance.

Such a stunt was attempted before in Washington D.C. in 1976, but heavy air traffic over Dulles International Airport ruined it; both planes landed over a minute apart.

No known video of the dual Concorde landing exists on the web. We won’t leave avgeeks looking for a Concorde video hanging though. We’ll leave you with this sweet 1991 video posted by Saúl Pérez Díaz showing how pilots flew the Concorde.

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Follow Mike Killian on Instagram and Facebook, @MikeKillianPhotography 

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