ExpertFlyer is a paid subscription service that I use. Membership costs $99 per year, and as someone that’s searching flight availability in one form or another on a daily basis, I find it to be well worth the cost. A vast majority of information found on ExpertFlyer is publicly available, though being able to access so much information in one place adds a lot of value for me. Then there are also some other unique features.
For example, ExpertFlyer allows you to set availability alerts, so if there’s not availability in your desired fare bucket, you can set an alert, and if space opens up they’ll email you. It’s worth noting that for award fare buckets this doesn’t work for all airlines. In the past it was super useful, because they displayed all Star Alliance availability, though that’s not the case anymore.
Still, I can set award availability alerts on a variety of airlines, including Alaska, American, Iberia, Qantas, etc.
Anyway, I just received an email from ExpertFlyer saying that they’re adding some further features, which I’m quite excited about:
We are excited to announce that today we are launching several new features in ExpertFlyer.com:
- Flight Timetables
- Aircraft Equipment Change Alerts
- Interline Agreement Information
- Visa, Health & Passport Information
Lets look at these one by one:
- Shows flights timetable information, both for direct flights and connections, for different airlines between a pair of cities on a specific day or range of days
- Can also search for all flights to or from a specific airport on a given day (*Beta feature, may be slower then the other searches.)
- Ability to search only for non-stop/direct flights or include connecting flights
- Advanced filtering options by airports, airlines, and type of flight
I don’t generally do a lot of timetable searches, but in theory this is a cool feature.
I know I’m easily amused, but more than anything I’m quite enjoying being able to chronologically see all the departures out of a specified airport on a given day.
Aircraft Equipment Change Alerts: (Premium Subscribers Only)
- Monitor for changes to the aircraft equipment code returned for the Seat Map of a flight
- No more surprise seat reassignments, ExpertFlyer will periodically check for an equipment change and notify you if a change is made
- Part of the 30 Active alerts allowed at one time in the Premium service.
This is also pretty cool. As a paid member you get 30 alerts at a given time, so as part of that you can set an aircraft equipment change alert.
Interline Agreement Information & Visa, Health & Passport Information:
- Additions to the Travel Information tool
- Interline Agreement search shows the airline codes that have an Interline Agreement with the specified airline
- Visa, Health & Passport Information shows Visa/Entry requirements for travel based on your citizenship and departure country, as well as other country specific information for your destination
This stuff is all publicly available as well, but having it all in one place is awesome.
First you can now see whether two airlines have an interline agreement. You simply enter the airline you want to find out about.
And then it will list all the airlines with which they have an interline agreement.
Visa requirements can be a pain to keep track of. Up until now I’ve used the Star Alliance website to keep track of visa information, which I find extremely useful.
So now you can use ExpertFlyer as well. You just enter your country of citizenship/residency, departing country, destination country, and transit country, and it will display the visa requirements for you.
There’s nothing game changing here. So if you previously weighed the pros and cons of ExpertFlyer and decided it wasn’t worth the cost to you, chances are that will still be the case.
However, these new features are pretty cool. Like I said, a lot of the value I get out of ExpertFlyer is the overall time savings thanks to how many things I can look up in one place. So I was happy with the service before and am even happier now.
Do you use ExpertFlyer or similar tools?