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Thread: Airline Flight Numbers

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Airline Flight Numbers

    I'm just wondering how airline flight numbers are determined, does the airline decided them, the airports they fly to or is it the Airline Watchdog's that decided them

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
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    It's pretty much per the airline. There's no set standard. For instance, for UA 800's are trans-pacific flights. 900's are trans-atlantic. UA's flight 1/2 used to be the around-the-world flight. Nowadays it's operating as ORD-HNL-ORD. NZ's flight 1/2 is AKL-LAX-LHR and back.

    Interesting story for any of you guys possibly watching the U.S. sitcom "Lost." For those that don't, it's about castaways on an island from a plane crash routing SYD-LAX on a fictitious airline called Oceanic. The flight they were on was numbered 816. Needless to say, UA's LAX-SYD-LAX flight for years and years was 815/816. About two years ago, when the show first aired (they are currently on their 2nd season), UA changed the number on that flight to 839/840. At the time I wondered why, as I have been flying this route since 1999 and has basically had the same flight number since they acquired the route from PA in the mid 80's. I figured the coincidence that ABC studios decided to use the same flight number (same route no less) had a lot to do with that. What are the odds that the creators of the show just randomly chose that number?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Cool thanks i was just wondering, because i started a fantasy airline, btw im dartie, and yeah i made flight number allocations, for international flights 001 - 099 was flights that departed from BNE and 100 - 199 was from Sydney, i sent a fellow aviation enthusiast the numbers and he said they are wrong and im like how can they be wrong.

  4. #4
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    By the way lost - the flight was oceanic flight 815, part of the numbers - 4 8 15 16 23 42 I AM THE WORLDS BIGGEST LOST ADDICT

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
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    Quote Originally Posted by heslop01
    By the way lost - the flight was oceanic flight 815, part of the numbers - 4 8 15 16 23 42 I AM THE WORLDS BIGGEST LOST ADDICT
    Ok, I knew it was either 815 or 816. Either way, I'm sure UA changed LAX-SYD-MEL-SYD-LAX from 815/816 to 839/840 for this reason.

  6. #6
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    Not a hard and fast rule...but traditionally odd numbers for westbound flights and even numbers for eastbound.

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