While booking tickets for a commercial airliner, is it possible to know the name of the aircraft (not the model, but the designated name) and then search the history of the plane, on how old is it, how many repairs has it gone through, has it ever had an accident etc.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ At the point of booking, probably not - they can change the aircraft you're flying on the day. Just before you're bording would be more possible - you can often look out the window in the terminal and read the tail number. $\endgroup$
    – Jamiec
    Nov 5 '15 at 10:46
  • $\begingroup$ And with the tail number, you may be able to find a part of its history on spooters website (e.g. the china's presidential aircraft) $\endgroup$
    – Manu H
    Nov 5 '15 at 15:55
  • $\begingroup$ Possible duplicate: aviation.stackexchange.com/questions/16855/… $\endgroup$
    – KeithS
    Nov 5 '15 at 16:22
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    $\begingroup$ You can maybe guess: Book a flight with Lufthansa from FRA to JFK, select a flight with a 747-8I (this is shown one the website for people like us, which prefer a special plane because the like it and so on), now you now that it can just be one of 19 differenct 747-8I. Now you can be at least sure, to fly on a pretty new plane: docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/… $\endgroup$
    – Peter
    Nov 6 '15 at 14:16

Unless you are booking at the very last minute, no there is no way to find out which particular aircraft you'll be on until you're strapped in. The airline themselves plan in advance but as soon as one plane needs unexpected maintenance, or is excessively delayed, the schedule is thrown out the window. For this reason more than anything no airline to my knowledge publishes this schedule.

Once you are at the gate you might be able to see the aircraft registration. If you google that you can see if it has been in any serious incidents, when it was delivered and how old it is. You won't be able to find out how many repairs it has gone through, only the airline has that (hint: the answer could be hundreds of times if you're counting minor issues).


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