VFR Plane

How can i get flightaware to track me if i am flying VFR?

is there some way of getting this done

I’m pretty sure that if you obtain a flight following it will show you on maps, but it will not be in your logged flights. It will display N#, Altitude, and destination. So if you look at a map of an airport near you should see yourself, but it will not log so therefore you can only see it while you are in the air.Correct me if I am wrong.

There’s no reliable way to get VFR tracking.

Why do you want to track a vfr flight?

There is a recent device called a SPOT Personal Tracker that some pilots have been using to track their VFR flights. It’s about $150 plus monthly service fee.

Downfall to this, is the position is only updated once every 10 minutes in tracking mode

findmespot.com/ExperiencingS … heAir.aspx

My work around (not knowing the how the service indeed works) would be to “check in” more frequently.

What do you mena why would you want to track a VFR flight? I would love to track my own flights in the 172 like I used to be able to on here.

I wanted to know the OP’s intent so I could offer a suggestion. It’s hard to offer a solution without knowing one’s problem or needs.

For the past month, I’ve noticed that all my VFR flights are tracked when I use flight following. They stay in my profile. I didn’t think this was possible, but seems to be a new “feature”.

I guess it could be a change in the way the controllers enter VFR Flight Following into the FAA’s computers.


If you get a squawk code that starts with ‘0’, you’re not in the NAS system and will definitely not show up on flight aware. If you get a code that starts with any other number, the controller put a flight plan in the NAS system and there is a better chance that you’ll show up on flight aware.

Codes that start with 0 are local codes, no route or altitude information is entered, and depending on the controller, no aircraft or destination info in entered.

NAS flight plans are put into the system the same was as an IFR flight plan, the only difference being “VFR” is entered in lieu of an altitude . . . that may or may not have an effect on if flightaware gets it. VFR/065 means a VFR flight requesting 6500, but just “VFR” can go in with no altitude specified.

I’m not so sure the above is quite right. Yes, for local work, the squawk code begins with 01xx, but when I ask for a pop up local IFR clearance, I get a code of 0151 or higher and I am issued a full and formal IFR clearance (CRAFT) through KJAN Clearance and Delivery from KBMO which makes me inclined to think that route and altitude data is entered into the system.

Local VFR gets 0101 up to 0150 at KJAN which I would think what you say is true but for local IFR I would think something additional is entered into the system esepcially when it comes to handoff to KHKS while working under IFR and I am issued missed instructions by approach controllers that include a clearance limit when appropriate.

I can probably test this out next time I do some local IFR work by filing a flight plan (will wait for IMC conditions of course) :wink: to see what sqawk code I get assigned.

Out here, everyone controlled by KMYF tower gets 0400, except inbound IFR. I think all other traffic getting local Class B work are assigned 0201-0299, including those inside KSAN’s space. This includes all the local TV, Police, Fire helicopters etc, as well as all the instructional flights doing practice approaches. Approach gets them established on said approach and advises that it’s flown at their own risk, no separation services provided. Any IFR or VFR-FF that leave the area, of course have “normal” squawks.

On an interesting note, one early morning I was checking when the early FedEx was landing, and on the KSAN map was “SKY10”, a TV chopper…likely checking out the latest debacle at the 5 & 805 split. The marine layer was way up there at 3000’ that morning, with 7 miles underneath. He wouldn’t be flying IFR, and should have been running a 02xx code. Showed up on FA map anyways

That’s interesting. Satsair operates with that prefix throughout the southeast.


Except for lessons that were in actual conditions, all of my practice approaches were done under VFR, and in those cases, instructions from approach and tower were always to “maintain VFR” (their informal words for fly at your own risk) since that transfers the responsibility of seperation from ATC back to the pilot like you hear above. While I may have gotten an abbreviated clearance, they were always with the caveat, maintain VFR and I had to read back maintain VFR.

This in my experiences has always has been done this way at least under KJAN.

If I request IFR handling by picking up a clearance whether it be on the ground or even in the air, then you will not hear the words “maintain VFR” or any other advisories since IFR is the purpose of ATC’s existence. While in VFR conditions, of course it’s the pilots responsibility to maintain seperation from VFR traffic, but from IFR traffic, by me being IFR, seperation is provided by ATC.

Are you taking dislexia listens from me, magnetoz?

Quickburn said SKY10 and Satsair operates under the call sign of SYK.

“SKY” is the three letter code for Japanese carrier Skymark Airlines. I have the feeling (opinion, belief, observation, whatever you want to call it) that the local ATC was using SKY10 just to keep track of the traffic dude because it was easier to use than Nwhatever.

Well I’ll be… I must be dyslexic. Disregard my previous comment.

KMBO, KJAN, and KHKS are all under Jackson Approach/Departure control, so a NAS flight plan isn’t required. If you pop-up and want an IFR clearance to an airport within the boundaries of approach control’s airspace, they will pass the inbound information through the landline (we call them ‘hand-writes’ where I am, but that could be different someplace else).

The LOAs between some approach controls and control towers doesn’t even require verbal coordination on a pop-up . . . a scratchpad entry (type approach, usually) on a full datablock is good enough (So-Cal Tracon and SMO tower were like that while I was there).

No-need to wait for IMC . . . ATC will treat it exactly the same either way. Try filing a flight plan through DUATs or FSS IFR from KMBO to KHKS, and you’ll get a code that starts with 1-7. On the way back, pop up VFR from HKS and request a local IFR back to KMBO from approach and you’ll probably get a code that starts with 0.

Local codes don’t allow for a route of flight or requested altitude message, and they don’t generate flight progress strips, so you can’t leave the boundaries of your approach control (the exception being if the controller verbally coordinates you to an adjoining approach control, which is possible, but there’s no flight plan information to pass, so a NAS fp is preferred). There’s no automation on handoffs on ‘0’ codes, so handoffs with adjoining facilities have to be done manually, and the next approach control would have to input your callsign and aircraft information manually . . . when you’re on a “0” code, you appear as a * to adjoining approach facilities.

Ahh, ok, thanks for explaining this. I should have known that no “physical” progress strip is generated on a popup. They do ask type if for type of plane on occasion but other then that, just like VFR flight following with the CRAFT flavor tossed in.

I just had figured if I am given a CRAFT, then altitude and route would be indicated for any change over in controller or handoff to HKS and given the IFR handling as compared to VFR practice approaches. I have never been tracked as you already stated on Flight Aware on my popup IFR jaunts as I didn’t file a plan.

I know this next question probably is controller specific, but if you were given your druthers, would you rather have me do a pop up or file a flight plan? Trying to be a good neighbor and work with the system. No skin off my back to file a plan if it’s just that much less work on the controller if all I am doing is drilling holes in clouds.

For my IFR flight plan, I had intended to file MBO Brenz MBO with the intention of requesting the ILS HKS. I assume that would still generate a squawk code of a number beginning other then zero?

I know KJAN does appreciate I depart VFR when able so they don’t have to jockey traffic around KMBO and they give my clearance as I climb out enroute to my destination.

Any time you file a flight plan online or through FSS, it goes through the NAS system, so you’ll get a code other than 0 and it should show up in flightaware.

As far as the ‘easiest’ way to pick up an IFR clearance . . . departing from an airport with a tower, it’s easiest to get it on the ground – you’re already in the system and everyone knows exactly what you’re going to do.

If you’re at an airport without a tower or already in the air, anything prefiled is definitely the easiest. If you’re going from an uncontrolled airport, departing VFR and picking up the prefiled IFR in the air is the easiest on ATC. But of course, do what’s safe and legal over what’s easiest.

But . . . it’s not THAT much more work for a popup . . . we have to hand write a strip and type something into the computer, not a big deal. If it’s so busy that the controller might not have time even for that, there is probably a flight data controller right there to do it anyway.