Best Air Travel Apps for iPhone Skyscanner vs Jetradar vs Hopper ... and 3 more

Edited by Jasmin, Eng, Maria

For many people, air travel comes hand-in-hand with stress. Purchasing flights and managing your time at the airport can be anxiety inducing or, at the very least, time-consuming and tedious. Apps for flight reservations and tracking can take a bit of that weight off your shoulders, and add a little excitement. If part of your air travel stress comes from a financial angle, you need an app that can find you the best deals on flights. Don't settle for rates from travel agents or specific airlines when an app can aggregate tons of flight information from all over the Internet.

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If staying on top of flight statuses and making quick work of navigating airports, consider a flight tracking app. Sure, you could just opt to download the app for the airline you're currently flying with, but what happens the next time you fly with a different company? Flight tracker apps aren't bound to a single airline, making them the better option long-term. Plus, they can track almost any flight, from anywhere in the world, making them perfect for someone who has a spouse or family member who travels frequently, or for anyone with a love of aviation.

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From booking flights at a wallet-friendly price to keeping track of your flight's details, these 6 apps will have you covered.

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Book Flights

Method 1: Skyscanner

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  1. 1
    Description
    .
    This all-in-one travel app can also book hotels and cars, but its specialty is in searching and comparing the best deals on flights.
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  2. 2
    Pricing/Upgrades
    .
    Free.
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  3. 3
    Pros
    .
    • Option to search flights based only on dates, and the ranges can be flexible.
    • 'Trip Details' page
    • 'Everywhere' feature shows you a list of cheap flights to a number of destinations around the world. Narrow this search by departure airport for a more personalized result.
    • Filter search results by airlines, cabin class, departure and arrival times, layovers, and more.
    • Recent searches are saved in the home screen.
    • Get email updates on price changes.
    • No extra booking fees.
    • Where applicable, earn frequent flyer miles when booking with the app.
    • Pairs your flights with hotel and car searches.
    • User-friendly, well laid-out interface.
    • Bright, sleek design.
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  4. 4
    Cons
    .
    • No in-app booking; you'll always be re-directed to the airline agent's site.
    • Users have reported occasional discrepancies between prices displayed on the app and actual prices on the booking site.
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  5. 5
    Verdict
    .
    Skyscanner is best for someone looking to optimize their air travel by having hotel and car reservations linked to flight information. The 'Everywhere' feature makes the app ideal for spontaneous vacationers too, or just as a means of inspiration for any upcoming trip. Download here.
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Method 2: Jetradar

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  1. 1
    Description
    .
    Jetradar compares offers from commercial airlines and agencies, as well as charter and low-cost airlines.
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  2. 2
    Pricing/Upgrades
    .
    Free, with an optional in-app purchase of $1.99 to receive business class notifications.
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  3. 3
    Pros
    .
    • View search results by list or map.
    • Suggests cheapest airport and date options within a decent range of your original selection.
    • Until you're ready to book, save flights to your list of Favorites and receive updates on price changes.
    • Filter search results by price, payment options, number and duration of layovers, total flight time, airports, airlines, and more.
    • Search flights in different currencies.
    • Search for multi-city flights.
    • The 'History' tab saves all your previous purchases. It also tracks your recent searches in case you want to go back and review a particular deal.
    • Check baggage allowances for your chosen flight.
    • No commissions or additional booking fees.
    • No sign up process required.
    • Share flight info via email.
    • Clean, simple, and appealing design.
    • Easy to navigate interface with regular updates.
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  4. 4
    Cons
    .
    • No in-app booking; you'll always be re-directed to the airline agent's site.
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  5. 5
    Verdict
    .
    Jetradar has two key features that set it apart from other airfare apps: its multi-city search function and its access to charter flight info. Since its one of the few free flight booking apps to offer these features, it's definitely a must-have for those who need these options when booking flights. Download here.
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Method 3: Hopper

Hopper 70578.jpg
  1. 1
    Description
    .
    More than just an app for booking flights, Hopper predicts the best time to purchase tickets. Simply enter your destination and the app's search will bring you fare information, ideal travel dates, and details on when the prices for your preferred destination are likely to rise or fall.
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  2. 2
    Pricing/Upgrades
    .
    Free.
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  3. 3
    Pros
    .
    • Place a trip on Watch status to receive push notifications when the prices drop and right before they're predicted to go back up.
    • Filter flight searches by an airline, layover times, non-stop only, and more.
    • Offers tips on how to save even more money by suggesting different airports and return dates that have better prices.
    • Receive personalized deals and exclusive sales from your chosen airport.
    • Great for booking last-minute trips, as all you need to know, is your destination and the app will provide you with the cheapest dates to go there.
    • Speedy flight purchases with a few simple taps and a swipe.
    • Charming, attractive design.
    • Ad free.
    • Very user-friendly and regularly updated for quality.
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  4. 4
    Cons
    .
    • Doesn't offer multi-city search options.
    • No in-app option for cancellations.
    • Charges a commission fee.
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  5. 5
    Verdict
    .
    The Hopper app is an ideal choice for frugal flyers. Its 'Watch' feature is the highlight as it saves you from having to constantly check updates in pricing. Though the other apps in this article send price updates on flights Hopper is the only one to provide in-app booking, making it my top choice. Download here.
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Track Flights

Method 4: FlightAware

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  1. 1
    Description
    .
    Track real-time status of commercial flights from anywhere in the world, and chartered or private flights within the U.S. and Canada.
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  2. 2
    Pricing/Upgrades
    .
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  3. 3
    Pros
    .
    • Search flights by airline name, flight number, departure and destination city, or aircraft registration number.
    • View full-screen flight tracking maps and radar overlays.
    • Create alerts for specific flights and get updates on their flight status, delays, cancellations, gate or terminal changes, estimated departure time, connecting flight status, and changes in departure and arrival times.
    • View flight status, IFR route, and aircraft photos from private and chartered flights.
    • Share flight details with your contacts and Facebook friends.
    • Locate planes near you to catch a glimpse.
    • Detailed yet streamlined design.
    • Easy to use and regularly updated.
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  4. 4
    Cons
    .
    • Ad removal costs $2.99.
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  5. 5
    Verdict
    .
    Though it may only be useful to a niche user, FlightAware is unique in its function of tracking chartered and private flights. It would be a must-have for anyone who flies both commercial and private or has family members that do. Download here.
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Method 5: Planes Live

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  1. 1
    Description
    .
    Watch planes as they fly from all over the world and get instant, up-to-date information on any flight.
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  2. 2
    Pricing/Upgrades
    .
    One-time purchase of $4.99. There is a free version but it's drowning with ads, so it's best to treat it as though it's a trial.
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  3. 3
    Pros
    .
    • Search any flight you need to stay updated on.
    • Stay updated on friends and family member's flights so you know when they'll arrive, and the best time to pick them up from the airport.
    • Sends alerts for any and all flight status changes such as cancellation, and new departure or arrival times.
    • Save airports and other locations to My Places for instant access.
    • Locate planes near you to catch a glimpse.
    • Locate and check the weather of any airport.
    • Share your trip and flight information.
    • Customizable map settings.
    • Provides detailed information on aircraft characteristics, as well as the plane's route, speed, and altitude.
    • Tracks helicopters, too.
    • Easy to use and regularly updated.
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  4. 4
    Cons
    .
    • Only tracks flights that are currently active, so you won't be able to view details of an upcoming flight.
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  5. 5
    Verdict
    .
    Planes Live is a great app for travelers but an even better one for aviation enthusiasts. Download here.
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Method 6: App in the Air

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  1. 1
    Description
    .
    A flight tracker and airport guide, App in the Air is your personal flying assistant app.
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  2. 2
    Pricing/Upgrades
    .
    Free, with many in-app purchase and subscription options. For $3.49 per month or $29.99 per year, you'll get access to the app's Premium features including offline flight status notifications, automatic check-in, and more.
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  3. 3
    Pros
    .
    • In the Timeline view, flights are broken into four stages: check-in, boarding, takeoff, and landing. During each phase of your flight, you'll see a colorful bar marking the stage's progress. There's also a countdown to when that stage is over, and the real-time estimate of when that is.
    • Provides weather and currency info for all airports.
    • Use the Tips section to get to info from other flyers on the best restaurants, where to charge your phone, and more.
    • Sends alters via push notifications or text messages on a variety of changes to your flight.
    • If you are tracking many flights at once, you can pick and choose the ones you want alerts for.
    • Check-in and choose a seat in-app.
    • Use the Trip Details section to make a checklist for your trip without having to use your to-do list app.
    • View and search maps of your current airport. If you search for pillows, the map will give you detailed info on what floors and shops in the airport will have those for sale.
    • Sleek, beautifully laid-out design, with easy to read maps and flight stage tracker.
    • Easy to use and regularly updated.
    • Integrated with TripIt.
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  4. 4
    Cons
    .
    • Many key features are only available in the Premium version.
    • Not every airport will have detailed map information.
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  5. 5
    Verdict
    .
    App in the Air is perfect for casual or frequent flyers. Its flight stage tracker is great for keeping even the biggest slackers on time. While it's not as appealing for aviation enthusiasts it's my top pick for actual travel, especially because of its integration with TripIt. Download here.
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APA (American Psychological Association)
Best Air Travel Apps for iPhone. (2017). In VisiHow. Retrieved May 25, 2017, from http://visihow.com/Best_Air_Travel_Apps_for_iPhone

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Article Info

Categories : IPhone | Travel & Leisure

Recent edits by: Eng, Jasmin

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