route symbols


I am a recent subscriber to Flightaware and have a question regarding “route symbols”. For example, I checked on a family members flight in progress and the route is given in letters and numbers (ex JYP, PMM4, AYX). What are these symbols? Beacons? Physical landmarks or towns? Thanks


Intersections, VOR’s, things like that. Basically where the plane intercepts or turns.

Here is the AYX point you provided. It’s a very small airport.

Someone check to see that correct.


Generally, they are points on the route of flight.

NDB - Non Direction Beacons are 2 or 3 letter

VORs - are 3 letters

Intersections - Five letter (CAMRN, COATE, etc.)

Things with numbers in them…

PMM4, CARDS6, etc are DPs (Departure Procedures) and STARs (Standard Terminal Arrival Routes). They are what they sound like. DPs are the procedures used (in the air) to depart the airport area. STARs are procedures to “standardize” the “flow” of arrivals into airports.

If written like this BLUES2.IIU that’s a DP and the part after the “.” is the “transition”…the point where you stop using the published procedure and continue along your desired route.

If like this SIE.CAMRN4, it’s a STAR…SIE is teh point of entry where you’ll begin to follow the CAMRN4’s published procedure.

Start poking around the airport info for a few fields…you’ll get the gist.


Some routes will include Jxxx or Vxxx (where “x” is a variable number). These are established airways (highways in the sky). J stands for “Jet” meaning they’re high altitude routes (typically above 18,000 feet). V stands for “Victor” and they’re used by planes at the lower altitudes.

Some airways may simply go from one VOR to another, while others may connect three or more. It’s a lot easier to file “J6” instead of “ABQ ZUN DRK EED HEC PMD”


Helpful info. from a past discussion: