When Was the First Passenger Plane Invented?

The first passenger plane was invented by Thomas Benoist. Designated as a “flying boat,” the world’s first scheduled passenger airline service took place in 1914. Flying from St. Petersburg, Fla. to Tampa, the St. Petersburg-Tampa Airboat Line ran for four months.

Percival Fansler, who sold boat engines, came up with the idea of a regularly scheduled air route and raised investors in St. Petersburg. The plane was a Model 14 Benoist airboat with a 75-horsepower engine and a top speed of 64 miles per hour. The plane could hold the pilot and one passenger. The passenger service flew twice a day, six days a week, and transported over 1200 people while it was in business.