Flying Messenger FAQs

What information will I receive?

For the standard service you'll receive the latest status report for the flight, as well as confirmation of the flight details.

For the PLUS service, you'll receive additional status updates:

  • Arrivals: When the flight is on approach, and then when baggage from the flight is on the carousels.
  • Departures: Status update four hours before scheduled departure, then a 'gate open' notice when the flight is ready to board.

When can I use the service?

The PLUS service can be requested up to two weeks ahead. If you set it up more than 12 hours in advance, the first alert will arrive 12 hours before arrival/departure.

The standard service must be requested on the day of the flight, not more than 12 hours before the scheduled time or four hours afterwards.

How do I use it?

For the standard arrivals service you need to send 'abz' (for Aberdeen) and the flight number to 82222. For the PLUS service you additionally need to include 'arr' or 'dep' (for arrival or departure) plus the date of the flight (ddmmyy).

So for flight BA1308 arriving on 01 November 2010, you'd send the following SMS text to 82222:

  • Flying Messenger: abz ba1308
  • Flying Messenger PLUS: abz ba1308 arr 011110

What do I need to use the service?

All you need is an SMS-capable mobile. If you use a pre-pay phone, you’ll need to have enough credit to cover the cost of the service.

How quickly do the messages arrive?

Messages typically take 10-15 seconds to arrive, and 99% of messages will arrive within one minute.

How much does it cost?

For the standard Flying Messenger service, each alert costs 25p plus your network’s SMS message rate. For Flying Messenger PLUS the charge is 75p per request, plus your network’s SMS message rate.

You are not charged for Flying Messenger PLUS confirmation messages, PIN code delivery, "flight not found" or "service temporarily unavailable" messages.

Can the services be used overseas?

These services are designed for use within the UK. It may be possible to use them overseas, but you should check the call charges beforehand with your network operator – they may be expensive.

How am I charged for the services?

Your charges will appear on your mobile phone bill and payment will be collected via your network operator. If you're a pre-pay customer, your balance will be deducted by the network operator.

Where does the flight information come from?

The data comes from the airport's flight information database, the same data source that’s used for flight information screens in the terminal. The information is supplied to us by airlines.

Can services be cancelled once ordered?

Once requested, these services cannot be cancelled.

Why don’t I receive Flying Messenger alerts, even though I can send and receive normal text messages?

This can happen if you’re a pre-pay customer who has run out of credit on your phone, then requested a reverse-charge SMS service. In these circumstances your mobile phone service provider may bar your phone from receiving further reverse-charge alerts, even if you have subsequently topped up your phone. The solution is to call your service provider to have your phone unbarred.

How can I contact you?

If you have a query about our SMS flight information services, please email us at

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