Home of the IOS Plane Spotting app

Welcome to Plane Spotting!

Our sister app TrainSpotting is available on the App Store www.train-spotting.co.uk

Boeing 727


Vans RV-8


This is the home for the iPhone, iPad & iPod app for aircraft enthusiasts and Plane Finder users!


PlaneSpotting effortlessly stores both Sightings & Flights

For Sightings you only need to save the Registration but you can also add:

  • Location
  • Photo (camera or library)
  • Date
  • Notes

For Flights you only need Origin but you can also add:

  • Destination
  • Registration (adding number automatically generates a spot)
  • Photo (camera or library)
  • Departure Date & Time (defaults to current date & time for quick save on boarding)
  • Arrival Date & Time
  • Notes

You can view your data in many ways - see below!

Screen-shots & explanations of the Main Pages of the app &
Frequently Asked Questions are shown below

Home Page

The Info link at top right tells you about the app and our Premium Subscription service.

G-SPOT takes you straight to recording a sighting.

LOG FLIGHT lets you enter the details of a new flight.

PREMIUM SUBSCRIPTIONS The standard version database is updated annually. However, our master database of UK registered civilian & military flying machines (Planes, Helicopters, Microlights, Balloons, Gliders etc.) is updated by our Team every 2 weeks. There are approximately 2,000 changes per year, 70 every two weeks. If you need access to the very latest registrations we recommend the Premium Subscription.

You can Search the database for any registration. You can delete the G- if you want to search for a military registration such as XX304 for example.

At the bottom left is the app version number you are using.

You can also access all the other main pages via the tab menu at the bottom of the screen.

Home Page

This screen shows the total numbers of aircraft/flying machines by type and the number of sightings.

Clicking on a type takes you to the next screen which shows the Classes within that type.....and on that page if you slide down you can search...just start typing!


The Trips Menu screen

Here you can choose to search all your sightings on a specific date or at a specific location.

Clicking on a date or location will display a list of all relevant sightings allowing you to select an individual one for review or edit.


The Options screen

Warning: any Import selection on this page will overwrite all existing data on the app!

  • Import will import a CSV file you have previously exported.
  • Export will export all your data as a csv file but excluding any photos taken from within the app (prohibited by Apple). You should email this file to yourself and save it to your iCloud Drive. You can then edit this data with a spreadsheet such as Numbers, save it as a csv file and import it again. See the Frequently Asked Questions below for instructions.
  • Manage Locations allows you to add to or archive your saved locations.
  • Support Website opens this web site in your browser.*
* Internet connection required

Home Page

The Aircraft Listing screen

If we have a default image for this type it will be shown. Clicking on the red cross will make it full screen.

If you wish to change or add an image of your own you can. If we do not have an image the app will invite you to send it to us and we may use it in our next update! With your name of course.

If the copyright owner of the image has specified a web site address, clicking on their name will open the page.

Below the factual data, all Sightings & Flights for this registration are listed. You can click to edit or swipe to delete them.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you allow Notifications, we will send you a message whenever we publish an update - this will normally be every 2 weeks. You can always change your Notifications preferences in your device Settings.

We recommend two methods:

1. If you have iCloud Backup (Settings->iCloud->Backup) selected on it automatically backs up your iOS device information (including all sightings data and photos from TrainSpotting) daily over Wi-Fi when your device is turned on, locked, and connected to a power source. This will allow you to recover your data if you replace your device for any reason. It will not sync your data with any other devices however. Alternatively you can back up to iTunes via a computer but you are responsible for regularly doing this.

2. We also recommend regularly using the Export function on the Options page to email your data to yourself. This data is in a simple CSV format. You can simply keep it as a backup or add data in bulk via a text editor or spreadsheet software or load the file into another app but it will not include any photos you have taken from within the app. To do this:
When you have internet connection, Go to Options->Export. This should open your email software with an email containing a CSV file. This is your data. Email it to yourself. When you receive the email, click on the CSV attachment and from the share icon (bottom left), click on "Add To iCloud Drive". You can import to a new device Using Import but BEWARE - this will overwrite any data already on that device.

If you enter a registration and the app responds that is could not find it in the database, provided you have an email account on your device, it will invite you to email details of the aircraft to us.

Please note the app only supports UK registered flying machines.

A. If you are reasonably comfortable with spreadsheets - yes! You can use the following process:

  1. Add at least one sighting and one flight to the app.
  2. When you have internet connection, Go to Options->Export. This should open your email software with an email containing a CSV file. This is your data. Email it to yourself. When you receive the email, click on the CSV attachment and from the share icon (bottom left), click on "Add To iCloud Drive".
  3. The most important thing to do next is to make a copy of the CSV file so you can reload the original if you encounter problems. We recommend using the apple Numbers app (free) for this process. The following assumes you are using Numbers on an iPhone but the same principle would apply whatever software you use.
  4. Open Numbers, it will show you your iCloud Drive directory. Locate the CSV file you just imported - DON'T open it yet. Click on Edit (top right), the files will all wobble. Click on the CSV file you want then click on the symbol of files with a + (top left) and a copy will be made. Now click on the copy to open it. You can then enter all your spots using the format of the Spots or Flights already there. You only need to enter the number for Spots, you only need location and date for Flights.
  5. When you are ready Save the file and then select Options (the 3 dots top right) Send a Copy and select CSV from the formats offered. Select Add To iCloud Drive.
  6. Return to PlaneSpotting select Options->Import and select the file you have just saved. The app will check your data during this process and inform you of any errors!