Flight-tracking apps and web sites abound — here’s our pick for some of the best flight trackers in the market today.
Flight-tracking apps and web sites can be fun to play with. But if you’re a meeting professional, flight trackers can be essential tools.
Consider this scenario: Despite your best effort to get her to fly in the night before, your keynote speaker insisted on taking an early-morning flight. Will she get there in time for the opening general session? Instead of pacing and biting your knuckles — OK, in addition to doing those things — you can hop on a website or open a flight-tracking app and follow her flight in real time, from the moment it leaves the tarmac to when it touches down at its final destination.
But which flight trackers are the most user-friendly and accurate? Here are a few flight-tracking sites and apps we think are worth the download.
Both a flight-tracking website and a downloadable app, FlightAware is the one you likely see quoted most in news stories about all things aviation due to its accurate, real-time information on all aspects of flying. You can search by flight number, origin and destination airport, and receive pretty much any information you could possibly imagine wanting to know, from exactly where the plane is, its filed/actual/estimated flightpath — even how long it takes to get to the airport and, if you sign up for notifications, you’ll get alerts on where the flight is and if it has hit any snags along the way. You can track all flights in the air in real time on its flight tracker, and track flight cancellations on its aptly named Misery Map.
This flight tracker has both an app and a mobile-friendly website you can use to track flights via flight number or route. It’s fairly quick and easy to use, and provides lots of info on everything from ETA estimates to parking and weather. On the downside, the website design is cluttered with so many ads that it can be tough to navigate, so to speak.
This flight-tracking site includes a free tracker you can use to search for flights by entering the flight number and airline. But there’s a lot more you can do, including search for all flights arriving at a specific airport, airport delays, airport maps, and a whole lot more.
Airline geeks will love this one, which offers a real-time map of all flights happening at the time, searchable by flight number for tracking just one of those gazillion flight paths.
Of course, you can always just plug the airline and flight number into Google and get up-to-date info on the flight’s status, ETA, and terminal and gate information. Of course, Google is pulling its info from other flight-tracking sites and you may want to go straight to the source. But with Google being second nature to so many of us these days, it’s a no-brainer to use. Note: This is not the same thing as Google Flights, which is Google’s airline search and flight booking engine.
What’s your favorite flight-tracking site and/or app? Let us know!