First Flight Alert test Failed


Yesterday I had my first opportunity to see if one of the flight alerts I had set here at FlightAware would actually trigger an advance notification via e-mail – it did not.

I had set up a “flight alert” for a particular plane whenever that plane would arrive to or depart from KLAX, to be sent 120 minutes before time of each estimated event.

Thanks to a good person here on FlightAware, I had a few days earlier learnt to locate this plane randomly and found that it apparently had spent several days in Miami. But then a couple days ago I discovered that plane had been flown back to London AND that its next flight would indeed be to KLAX.

I followed the plane and wondered if I would actually be sent an e-mail about it yesterday, but that never materialized. – Also, before plane departed there was no alert e-mail received by me. – I didn’t miss anything, since I knew where the plane was, but it would have been nice if this had worked.

I have two more alerts set – they have essentially been rendered meaningless now.


From what I see, you have 3 alerts setup, two of which are for aircraft departing KLAX who’s destination is KLAX.
Both G-VFAB/VIR1 and VH-OEJ/QFA15 do not originate from KLAX to arrive at KLAX, so you have to remove the origin of KLAX in order for the alert to function properly.
However, your other alert does not have an origin/destination pair, only destination of KLAX, so it will alert you properly.


…I see…I knew there was something – I intended for the alert to get triggered both when plane arrived and departed…

…well, my second alert could have happened today, this morning, but did not…VHOEJ – according to FlightAware this plane should be here at LAX right now and – correction – it should have just departed (9:13am local time) – but I went around the airport earlier and that plane, which we know as “Wunala Dreaming” was nowhere to be found…and it really isn’t possible to hide a plane of that size here at LAX, unless it’s inside a hangar, but the plane, arriving early this morning and departing around 9, would have no time for any hangar visit.

There was one Qantas 747 at the terminal commonly used, but it was regular Qantas livery…so…either the plane wasn’t here, or livery has changed…hope not.

It’s a bit “disturbing” that it’s possible to set up an alert that by design gets “self-annihilating” while that in itself does not trigger an alert! – I do get alerts for everything else!

…and now I will edit my alerts again…


It’s not necessarily self defeating, we have a number of users very interested in maintenance flights and similar that arrive and depart the same airport.


Thanks – it’s OK, I’ve edited my alerts now – but will probably have to wait a bit to see if it works (or maybe not…the Qantas plane might get back to LAX fairly soon)


None of your alerts are likely to trigger.

Alerts work on operating identifier - airline and flight number for airline flights, tail number for GA flights.
Your aircraft type restrictions are non-standard codes that won’t match the actual flights.


…I thought registration number was all that was needed – why does it say “OK” when I fill that in then…?
…the set up gives the appearance that you have given appropriate information for an alert to be triggered…

I’m interested in specific planes – not airlines…?

…maybe I should ask – what are those alerts for in the first place – I liked the idea of getting advance notice if a specific plane was heading towards me…

So far I have simply used the LAX website…it works OK, but I have to check often…


…just discovered that i missed my second plane for which alert had been set – HBJMJ
…plane was here, I didn’t see it, did not get alert…plane left and apparently flight was “interrupted” somehow…

But who can tell me how these alerts are supposed to work?


I set up an alert and got “commendations” for doing so…and was lulled into a sense that I would get alerts as apparently warranted.
Did not happen. – I was told why and made changes.
Was told my alerts would not work anyway…

…so…my question is: What must be true for an “alert” to actually trigger an e-mail notification as desired?
How does one set up a workable alert for a specific aircraft?
That is my only interest – specific airplanes…not airlines…
Thanks to anyone who knows about this and cares to share…


Make sure you “checked” the box under step 3 that asks “where should we send these alerts.” Make sure your correct email address is there.


…it is checked (and was) and correct e-mail address is given…that’s too basic…
I am told that “some people want alerts for flights beginning and ending at the same airport” – yet when I, accidentally, provided those criteria, I was told that the alert wouldn’t trigger (“because I had indicated that flight would start and end at the same airport”)…and wasn’t when the opportunity came…

…it’s great that I can manually check for whatever plane I want to at any time and find out where it is and where it’s heading…that’s beautiful…but, getting alerts about it without constantly checking would of course be to be preferred…


Please don’t start multiple topics for the same issue. It makes the discussion much harder to follow.

As I said above:
Alerts work on operating identifier - airline and flight number for airline flights, tail number for GA flights.

Entering a registration number is OK because tens of thousands of flights are operated daily as their registration numbers. The planes you would like to track do not - they operate with an airline callsign and flight number. To track them you need to set up an alert for the flight’s operating identifier, such as Swiss Air flight 38 or SWR38.

Additionally your alerts will not trigger because you’ve specified aircraft type limitiations that do not match the flights you want to track. HBJMJ operates Swiss Air flights as an A343 aircraft, not an A340, so even if it operates as its tail number your alert will not be triggered.

You alert would not trigger based on origin and destination airport because the aircraft is not operating a single flight between those airports.


I did not want to start a second thread in regards to the same basic topic – but I was left hanging with nebulous information and that still hasn’t changed — what ought to be utterly intuitive and self-evident, turns out not to be and no one has so far brought clarity to the subject matter…

Feel free to change that if you care, but if you don’t care, please leave it someone that does…


Wow…rude, too! Good work!!


…that was considered “rude”…you gotta be kidding me…

…see…? – …we’re getting nowhere…this could all have been just ONE message, followed by ONE clarifying reply…but no…it wasn’t to be…


We don’t understand your confusion. Airline flight alerts do not work on tail number - only GA operations will trigger alerts on tail number. There’s no ambiguity here.