Two Sites to Ease Your Travel Headaches

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AltSearchEngines has a couple of posts up that should be of interest to web workers who frequently travel. SeatGuru, a great site for planning out which airplane seat to sit in and which amenities your seat will provide, has been steadily adding site visitor reviews and more since being acquired by TripAdvisor in 2007. Meanwhile, FlightWait cuts through the complicated muck at many of the flight tracking sites and shows you just the flights in your area that are delayed.

Here’s what you’ll find at these useful travel sites.

I’ve written about SeatGuru before, but it’s been steadily adding user-interaction features and more. On each page for any plane lists, you’ll find an In-Flight Amenities list, which can tell you what kinds of audio, video, Internet and power options your seat will offer. You’ll find complete instructions for making selections on the site at the bottom of the home page.

The real strength of SeatGuru, though, comes from its ever-growing database of airplane seat maps, which now hosts 535 maps for more than 75 different airlines, according to AltSearchEngines. Through a “Submit Comments” button on each seat map page, users can contribute comments about the particular planes, where to sit, what your Internet options will be, entertainment options, and more. If you tend to accept random seat placements, especially for long flights where you may want to work or be entertained, check this out.

I’ve also written about FlightAware before. It’s very good for its huge, nearly real-time tracking of flights via data from air traffic controllers. However, the sheer amount of information may be overkill if you just want to see if a flight of interest is delayed or not.

FlightWait, a new site that I found at AltSearchEngines, has simpler goals than FlightAware does. It lets you enter a zip code, a city or an airport code (such as SFO for San Francisco), and get a graphic depicting any flights that are not delayed in green, while delayed flights are shown in red and black. For example, this afternoon if you typed SFO in, you would see most flights not delayed, but a San Francisco to Chicago flight showing a one- to two-hour delay. This site is useful for a view that takes seconds to get at, and FlightAware can give you more information if you find that you are looking at a delay.

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