Before You Panic, Try

Remember Erica? She was the lady who raged against US Airways for listing her husband’s delayed flight as UNKNOWN, thus spinning her into a terror-induced seizure of fears about exploding airplaines and raising her children as a single parent.

Some of our readers thought Erica blew it all out of proportion. You shouldn’t get paranoid over the results from a web page… there’s other ways to check on the flights. Our good buddy Better Living Through Miles at Upgrade Travel weighed in on it, giving some advice on the best way to track a flight. His advice?

    Never just rely on the airline’s own website for flight status. Instead, check out FlightAware, the site devoted to tracking all flights in American airspace. You’ll see the actual time of takeoff, landing, a neat map of the flight route, and some dorky data on speed, altitude, etc.

    But most importantly, FlightAware reports two different pieces of information than most airline websites: Wheels-up and wheels-down times. Airlines categorize flights by the times the plane is out, up, down, and in. “Out” and “in” refer to the departure and arrival at the gate. “Up” and “down” refer to the takeoff and landing on the runway.

Add it to your list of resources to consult before you panic, kids.

Getting more accurate flight tracking [Upgrade Travel]