In the books, apparition is described as a process when you disappear in one place and immediately reappear in another. In Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them movie, it is displayed as a very fast flight (like hyperspace travel in Star Wars), but still a process that takes time. Is there any canon information that resolves this ambiguity?

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    In the books it would appear to be teleportation, in the films it varies. Sometimes it is shown as flight, sometimes not. Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 15:36
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    You should not confuse the films and the books. In the books, it's always teleportation, blink-like. In the films, it's a bit of both (weirdness starts in the 5th film in the assault on the Ministry, where both factions fly engulfed in some smoke). In the books, it's quite big a fact that wizards just don't fly, unless they're Voldemort or Snape, for obvious reasons. Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 16:05
  • When Bellatrix touched the dark mark in Malfoy Manor to call Voldemort, it is stated somewhere that Voldemort would be able to fly within apparating distance, indicating apparation and flight are different
    – user13267
    Commented Jun 20, 2017 at 11:52
  • See also scifi.stackexchange.com/q/31063/4918 "What's the speed of Apparation?"
    – b_jonas
    Commented Jun 8, 2018 at 11:11

1 Answer 1


Apparition works quite differently in the books and in the movies. In the books, it is essentially teleportation with only a few seconds of "nothingness" followed by instantly arriving at your destination.

Harry felt Dumbledore’s arm twist away from him and redoubled his grip; the next thing he knew, everything went black; he was being pressed very hard from all directions; he could not breathe, there were iron bands tightening around his chest; his eyeballs were being forced back into his head; his eardrums were being pushed deeper into his skull and then —

He gulped great lungfulls of cold night air and opened his streaming eyes. He felt as though he had just been forced through a very tight rubber tube. It was a few seconds before he realized that Privet Drive had vanished.

But in the movies, Apparition is a bit inconsistent. Often it works as described in the books.enter image description here

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But at other times (aka, whenever the filmmakers decide that it would look cool), the wizard (usually a Death Eater) turns into a column of smoke that travels quickly through the air and can interact with the physical world.

enter image description here

So it basically depends in the movies. Apparation is teleportation, except for those times where it isn't.

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    The death eaters fly like that in the books too. It is described similarly in the battle of seven potters and when Snape jumps out of the window in the Great Hall right before the Battle of Hogwarts in the Deathly Hallows
    – user68699
    Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 19:18
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    @user68699: As far as I remember, only Snape and Voldemort can fly without external aid in the books
    – wyvern
    Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 20:38
  • The movies weren't even consistent as sometimes the Death Eaters flew in white smoke trails. Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 22:35
  • While the smoke-travelling thing is clearly similar to Apparition, is it ever referred to in-universe as Apparition? There is more than one form of magical travel, and travelling as smoke seems more closely related to Flu Powder than it does to Apparition. Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 23:24
  • This deatheater flying is flying not apparation guys.. Commented Jun 29, 2017 at 12:54

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