A gay couple from Germany and a lesbian couple from Poland married on an airplane yesterday between Stockholm and New York.

They wed on board a SAS flight. The company is owned by the governments of Norway, Denmark and Sweden, which all recognise marriage for gay couples.

SAS has been conducting straight weddings in the air for years but began a competition in September for gay and lesbian couples to become the first to wed on a plane.

The winning couple were Aleksandar Mijatovic and Shantu Bhattacherjee, who won the competition with 81,640 votes. Their wedding was followed by that of lesbian couple Ewa Tomaszewicz and Gosia Rawińska.

The short ceremonies took place over Sweden at around 20,000 feet and were conducted by a registrar from the European Parliament.

Anders Lindström, the PR director of SAS airlines said: “We are extremely proud to be the first airline to host not only the world’s first mid-air same-sex wedding, but both the first gay and first lesbian wedding.

“As the national airline of the world’s three most progressive countries, which were the first to legalise same-sex marriages, we felt it was completely natural to also be the first with this.”

Ms Tomaszewicz and Ms Rawińska, from Poland, said their wedding was a “small victory” for all those who wish to marry in Poland, where gay marriage is currently banned.