As we tentatively start to look ahead past the coronavirus pandemic, many of us have holidays to look forward to – either one’s that have had to be rescheduled or new one’s that have been booked in recent months.
Either way, the resumption of international travel means the need again for flight tracker apps – if you’re looking to book a trip abroad, then you’re better off checking out which are the cheapest apps for flights instead. For now though, we’re going to look at the top flight trackers.
Best flight tracker app – Ranked
These types of apps are typically used either by passengers to keep up to date with the status of their flights, or by friends & family members of those travelling who are checking to see if their significant others have arrived at their destination, either for safety reasons or if they’re going to pick them up from the airport when they land.
Regardless of the reason, there is 100% a need for these apps, hence the reason why there are so many different flight trackers on the market. The ability to track flights and look at flight information at will is extremely important.
In this article, we are going to look at the best three flight tracking apps currently available, and tell you a little bit about each one to help you decide which one you should download. Let’s get into it.
Flightradar24 is probably the most advanced and detailed flight tracking app out there, going above and beyond to provide users with the best possible experience when it comes to tracking aeroplanes.
The app offers users the opportunity to upgrade from the basic package too, with silver and gold subscriptions available for those who want to do more than simply tracking flights.
When you open the app, and have granted it location access, you are greeted by a screen which looks shows you which flights are currently flying overhead your location.
You are able to select each and every flight on this screen for more information on it including the airline, its departure airport, where it’s headed and what time it is expected to land. Further information including latitude and longitude is also available.
If you are looking for a specific flight then you have a number of options available to you. If you know the flight code then great, simply enter it in to the search bar at the top of the app and you will be directed directly to that flight.
If you don’t have the exact flight code to hand then you can search either by route, airline, airport or flights nearby. Once you’ve searched, select the flight you want to look at and you are able to see what time the flight is expected to land. You may also be able to look at live photographs of the aircraft should you be a keen aircraft spotter.
One really cool feature on Flightradar24 is its use of augmented reality. The way this works on Flightradar24 is by pointing your phone’s camera to the sky and from there the app will detect any aeroplanes that are currently flying over you, allowing you to select on each one to bring up further information on each flight.
While this may not provide anything particularly useful in terms of tracking specific flights, it’s really cool and brilliant for aircraft spotters.
The Flight Tracker
The next flight tracking app that is well worth a download is the aptly named ‘The Flight Tracker‘. Unfortunately, The Flight Tracker doesn’t come with a basic, free package like FlightRadar24 does, meaning that you will have to pay £43.99 a year to access all of its features.
You are able to subscribe to a three day trial before committing to paying, though, so if you like the sound of it after this quick run through then that is an option worth considering.
The best thing about this app is the fact that you can personalise it to your planned trips. To add trips to your home screen, you can search for your flight either by the flight code or by destination and arrival airport.
Once you have selected your designated trips, you are then able to see the status of your flight including departure and arrival time, which terminal you need to get to and which gate in the airport you will be leaving from.
If you are interested in keeping updated on flights from a certain airport and airline, then you can add these airports/airlines to your favourites list. Once you have selected your favourite airport, you are then able to access the live flight board which shows the upcoming departures and arrivals.
You are also able to access the airport map, which shows where each gate is in every terminal at that airport.
Another app that should be under consideration when it comes to downloading a flight tracking app is ‘Plane Finder‘.
The app is available to as a free version, however there is also a premium version which allows users to do a lot of cool things such as a 3D globe view of every flight on the planet and personalised alerts for any flights that you are interested in. Having said that, the free version is also pretty handy. Let’s take a look.
When you first open up the app, you are greeted by a screen showing all flights, both in the air and on the ground, on top of a map to show where these flights are located.
You can use the touch screen to browse around the world to see what aircrafts are where. To search for a specific flight you can use the search bar at the top of the screen which allows you to search via flight code or route.
One cool aspect of Plane Finder is that it shows more than just commercial airliners. You are able to look at the hot air balloons that are currently making up air traffic, as well as gliders and drones.
To filter which types of aircraft you want displayed on your map hit the filters button on the bottom menu bar and check/uncheck which aircraft you are interested in seeing.
Though you’ll be fine with any of the above, another alternative you can look at is Flightaware. It’s a popular flight tracker that allows you to see live air traffic easily either using the website, or by downloading the iOS or Android app.
You’ll be able to see the flight status of any planes in the air, and you can also look through the flight history if you’re searching for information about a flight that’s already taken off. As long as you have the aircraft details, you can tell whether the flight has arrived or not using its historical data.
With a detailed map on the homepage of Flight Aware, it’s definitely a solid choice if you’re looking for accuracy. The app offers detailed information based on their aeronautical charts, and uses both AI and machine learning to maintain a high level of accuracy.
Overall, this is another good choice if you’re looking for a popular flight tracker that can enable you to see real time flight status updates of the actual aircraft you want to track.
To conclude, all three of these apps are fantastic for keeping track of aeroplanes. However, if we were to suggest one in particular we would opt for FlightRadar24 – it offers the most comprehensive service around for free, while the other two mentioned here require payment to access features which rival those that FlightRadar24 possesses.