(This is the “return" question for my question on the right time for shaharis when encountering sunrise twice in a day)

In the summer, when flying from the East Coast to Tel Aviv on an afternoon flight, there are routes (flying North over Greenland) when the sun never sets. One leaves early afternoon from New York, flies over Greenland by the time evening comes and the sun stays up until morning over Europe.

In such a case does one need to pray arvit? Last time I was on such a flight we took a Southern route (middle of the Atlantic on to Spain) and the night did set so there was no issue. But I was prepared to skip arvit and felt bad in anticipation.

I could not find anyone addressing the question directly. Do we have sources on the topic or did anyone ask a rav?

  • 3
    I took a flight like that the opposite way. Took off just after sunrise at 6am and didn't daven mincha till 26 hours later on the same day. Weird.
    – Double AA
    Commented Jan 12, 2016 at 4:45
  • 1
    Since when is praying 'Arvit dependent on the sun setting? Many communities pray 'Arvit immediately following Pelag HaMinḥah when it is still broad daylight.
    – Lee
    Commented May 23, 2016 at 8:13
  • @Lee yes but this is only feasible as a minyan, not individually, see e.g., third para here
    – mbloch
    Commented May 23, 2016 at 8:42
  • @mbloch I may be wrong here, but isn't that talking about davening Mincha after Plag and Maariv before sunset?
    – user9907
    Commented May 23, 2016 at 11:09
  • Yeah, I think it should be no problem to daven mincha before plag and maariv afterwards
    – Daniel
    Commented Feb 17, 2017 at 15:50

1 Answer 1


I have now asked different rabanim this question since I asked it here. Simple answer is that one is patur from kiriat shema and arvit if one doesn't encounter the night on such a flight.

One interesting answer was offered by R Ari Wasserman who told me he personally heard from R Gedalia Finkel (a rav in Mir Yerushalaim and the brother of R Nosson Tzvi Finkel) who asked R Chaim Kanievski if someone should change his flight (at a cost of 700$) to avoid a "night flight with no night" since he would miss kriat shema. R Kanievski answered it was worth doing so.

R Wasserman adds this is a chidush and a chumra of midat hasidut since there is no formal obligation.

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