How To Check Or Find Flight Number? – A Detailed Guide

How To Find Flight Number

Posted on Oct 27th, 2022 by Renu Dahiya, Last updated on Nov 10th, 2022

Many airlines operate a number of flights each day to destinations all over the world. Creating flight numbers is one of the easiest and most efficient ways of keeping them straight. A streamlined system of numeric codes helps travellers locate and identify flights, airports, and air traffic controllers to identify and communicate with pilots. And, these letters and numbers you see on your boarding pass are no random combination. Every airline uses a specific system to ascribe numbers and letters to every flight. 

From the moment you arrive at the airport until you pick up your luggage at the other end, your flight number guides you every step of the way. So, in this blog, we will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to find your flight number. We will also answer some frequently asked questions about flight numbers and their importance.

What Is A Flight Number?

When looking for your flight number, it is important to understand what a flight number is and how to find it. A flight number is a code that is used to identify a particular flight. It is usually composed of the airline code and a 1-4 digit number. For example, if you are flying on United Airlines, the number of your flight might be UA1234. 

The flight number is important because it is used to track the flight and for airport operations. It is also used to generically identify a flight – so if you want to know the status of a flight, you can look it up by its flight number. It can be found on your tickets, boarding pass, or itinerary. It is also sometimes listed on your confirmation email or confirmation number. If you are still having trouble finding the number of your flight, you can always contact the airline directly. 

What Does The Flight Number Actually Mean? – Flight Number Conventions & Standards

A flight number consists of two letters followed by a sequence of numbers. These codes are unique to every flight and are how the airline and air traffic controllers monitor the flight status at all times. Let’s know what this code actually means and how to work yours out. 

  • The first two letters in a flight number are quite obvious as these relate to the particular airline you are flying with. For example: If you fly with British Airways, your flight will start with BA. Similarly, when flying with EasyJet, the number of a flight will start with U2, and with Ryanair, it will start as FR.
  • It gets a little bit complicated when the numbers are introduced. Each airline has its own rule when assigning numbers to the flights but there are some general rules such as – Each flight name must contain a 1-4 digit number and every number range between 1 and 9999. 
  • With a few exceptions, flights are generally numbered based on their direction of travel. For example, North and eastbound flights are assigned even numbers, while the south and westbound flights are numbered odd. 
  • Passengers flying and returning on a similar flight will only have a minor change in number. Airlines typically assign the return flight number as one digit higher than the outbound flight. For example, American Airlines has a flight from London Heathrow to Mumbai that’s AA6657. When it returns to London, the flight number is AA6658.
  • On the whole, the lower the flight number, the more important that route is to the airline. Delta Airlines runs flight DL1 from JFK (New York) to London Heathrow (LHR), a popular and important flight route. There is a historical aspect to this also, with the longest-standing flight routes usually assigned the lowest flight numbers. 
  • Flight numbers of less than 3 digits are often assigned to premium or long-haul flights. 4-digit numbers in the range between 3000 and 59999 typically represent regional affiliate flights, while numbers larger than 6000 are generally codeshare numbers for flights operated by different airlines. 
  • Airlines also operate on superstition and tend to avoid ‘unlucky’ numbers. Due to this reason, flights will never be assigned the numbers 13 and 666. After all, nobody wishes to fly with the devil. Another rarely-seen number is 911.
  • You will also not see a flight number like 737. The airlines don’t use this number to avoid confusion with the model of the aircraft. 

Flight Number Examples: 

  • If you’ve booked London to Delhi flights with American Airlines, then your flight number will be AA6661 or AA6663.
  • The number of Delta Airlines flight flies from LHR to Mumbai is DL5945. 
  • If you are planning to fly with a British Airways flight from LHR to HYD (Hyderabad), the number of your flight will be BA277.

How To Find Out Flight Number?

Once a flight booking process completes, you receive a confirmation in your email. This will help you to get a flight ticket number or booking reference along with the number of your flight. But sometimes, it may happen that you miss out or lose the email or accidentally delete the email. In such cases, you wonder about the flight number. Well, don’t worry! You can get it from different methods that are explained below. 

Find the flight number in the given ways: 

  • Confirmation Email – Whenever you book your flight ticket with any particular airline, you will receive a confirmation email once the flight booking gets completed. In the email, you can find your booking reference number, ticket number, and flight number. 
  • Receipt from Airport/City Ticket Office –  In case you book your flight ticket from the airport counter or at a ticket office, you get a receipt. You can find the ticket number and flight number on that receipt. 
  • Boarding pass – You can find the number of your flight on your boarding pass as well. 
  • Online – You can also locate your flight number online. Visit the official website of the particular airline and sign in to your account and select the ‘my booking’ or ‘manage booking’ option. Fill in your reference number or the PNR number and the last name of the passenger. You will get all your detail including personal detail as well as the boarding detail. 
  • Call the Airline – Apart from these ways if you can’t find the email in your inbox or fail to retrieve the flight number, you can contact the airline customer service phone number to get direct help. The support team members will help you thoroughly to get the flight number. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why do airlines change flight numbers?

A: Sometimes, the change in flight numbers is because of a merger or a new codeshare arrangement. So, it is to prevent two airlines from flying flights with the same number in the same area at the same time. 

Q: Do airlines reuse flight numbers? 

A: Yes. In most cases, those flight numbers repeat daily. Flight 6661 on American Airlines always goes between London Heathrow and Delhi seven days a week, while 6662 runs the same route in reverse. In some special cases, the routes have a special meaning. 

Q: Can two flights have the same flight number?

A: Yes. The same flight number can be used to refer to multiple flights operating at the same time. This happens fairly regularly if a flight is heavily delayed. 

Q: Is the flight number the plane number?

A: The flight number is just the numerical part, but it is commonly used for the entire flight designator. It is distinct from the aircraft’s registration number, which identifies a specific airplane. 

Q: How are charter flights numbered?

A: Charter flights use the same numbers as ferry flights. They are typically 4-digit number that begins with 8. This convection is not always followed. But private flight numbers are uncommon so they can be easily distinguished from commercial flights. 

Q: Are the flight number and confirmation number the same?

A: No. A flight number is different from the confirmation number you receive when booking a reservation. A confirmation number is an alphanumeric code that is used to identify your reservation and expedite the check-in process. You can know when and how to check in here.

Q: Where is the flight number on the ticket?

A: You can check the flight number on your air ticket under the head of ‘flight’ or ‘flight number’. The first two letters (or 1 letter and 1 digit) indicate your airline name; the other letters or digits show the number of your flight. 

That’s almost everything from our side. So, the next time you get confused or have a question like ‘How do I find my flight number?’, consider this above-mentioned detailed guide. And, if you still face any other issues, do contact us. We will clear all your doubts at the earliest possible. 

Speaking of our travel agency, MyTicketsToIndia is a leading flight-booking platform that deals in offering the cheapest flight tickets to India from various destinations in the UK, USA, Australia, Canada & Dubai. We have more than 13 years of experience in the travel industry. So, what are you waiting for? If you are in search of cheap UK to India flights and back, call our travel agents now and snag the best deal ever!


About Renu View All Posts

Renu Dahiya is a passionate writer who worships her profession. Her love for writing has encouraged her to pursue her career as a writer. Her friends call her a “travel worm” and always come to her to know some interesting traveling tips and destinations. Renu is a repository of knowledge about traveling who knows which place should be visited in which season. Oh yes, she is insanely in love with dancing too. Writer, traveler and dancer, a perfect combination! Without a doubt, she is a complete package.

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