Have you ever tried to track a flight by heading to an airport’s website? Sure, most airports mean well by presenting you with departure and arrival information, but the majority of these sites require quite a bit of patience. Not only are most of these sites archaic, but airport site interfaces generally need a lot of work to become remotely user-friendly. Virgin Airlines has recognized this flight tracking problem.
In order to combat the issue, Virgin Airlines has created a Twitter bot that will allow you (or anyone keeping tabs on you) to track your flight through Twitter. Of course, you’ll need a Twitter account to do so, but, really, who doesn’t have a Twitter account these days? If you don’t, it’s time to sign up for one, but enough about Twitter. Let’s talk about the genius behind Virgin Airlines.
Twitter to Virgin: Is My Flight On Time?
If you have a Virgin Airlines flight coming up soon, here’s what you need to know. In order to track your flight (day of the flight only), you must send a tweet to @VAAINFO. The tweet must include your flight number and departure. Once you get the hang of sending out this tweet, it won’t be an issue. Virgin will tweet you back with information about your flight (when it’s leaving, what time it is set to leave…).
Keep in mind that the Virgin Twitter feature is powered by a bot, which means that you won’t get a human response from Virgin. This is, however, a huge step for airlines. In fact, it’s such a large step that I wouldn’t be surprised if a few additional airlines take a cue from Virgin. This is, after all, a quick and painless way to track a flight.
A New Idea?
As far as this reviewer knows, Virgin is the first airline to provide this type of Twitter service. However, there are some airports that provide Twitter service (or similar services) to clients. In addition, a few travel companies (Air Canada Vacations, for example) have iPhone and Android apps that allow users to track flight times.
Essentially, Virgin Airlines has come up with a new way for Virgin travelers to track flights. Sure, this idea may be present elsewhere, but it’s a huge step forward for a popular airline. In fact, it’s right in tune with Virgin’s whole marketing scheme. If you’ve ever called the company, you know that Virgin is all about staying with the times. This, it seems, is just another step forward for the popular company.
Start Tweeting Now
Set up a Twitter account (it’s easy) or use your current account to start sending tweets to Virgin Airlines. Who knows, you may even be inclined to book your next flight with Virgin given how easy it now is to track your flight. If you have a significant other who travels a lot, this is also a great way to keep tabs on the one you love. Find out when flights are taking off and arriving, so that you don’t have to worry.