Interview with Flightmapping: see who flies where
I remember how a few years ago, it must have been around 2004, a friend of mine, aware of my interest in commercial aviation, showed me a site he had just come across. It was called Flightmapping.com and it basically used maps to show all cities you could fly to from any given British airport.
As someone that enjoys browsing through the route maps on the in-flight magazine every time I travel, this idea was amazingly simple, yet very appealing....yet, when I visited recently, I saw Flightmapping had changed considerably.
To summarize, Flightmapping is still pretty much a map-based flight search site but it now looks a much more mature project, meaning "mature" in a positive way! with plenty more resources and two very interesting blogs about current aviation and air travel issues.
It's good to see how there's people out there trying to improve the flight search experience, introducing maps and visual elements in a way that broadens your knowledge of the options available and makes the market more transparent.
I then decided to get in touch with the Avery brothers, the founders and managers of Flightmapping to learn more about how their story and about how their project had been evolving...
Q: Could you please describe in your own words what is Flightmapping?
A: Flightmapping is the leading UK-focused flights information website, saving users hours trawling the net for flights by showing who flies where from any UK airport in an instant.
Simply type where you want to fly to, or from, in order to activate Flightmapping’s superfast route finder. Results are quickly and clearly displayed with links to the relevant airlines.
Q: What makes Flightmapping unique in the crowded flight search industry?
A: We like to think we stand out in a world of copycat price comparison sites. Flightmapping.com was set up back in 2002 to take the pain out of looking for flights.
It shouldn’t be a complex nightmare like searching for car insurance or credit card deals, but knowing what routes are available is a crucial part of the flight booking process overlooked by many people.
Most are only operated by one or two airlines, so by just showing who flies where, we are simplifying what has become for many people the most stressful part of booking a holiday or business trip.
Q: Who is in the team? How did the project start?
A: Just the two of us - the Flight Brothers – site founder James Avery and I.
James set up Flightmapping because he couldn't find anything on the web that just listed who flies where from UK airports. He taught himself basic programming and SEO skills and then got me on board to write the content because of my background as a newspaper reporter.
Q: What is your business model?
A: Attract as many users to the site as possible, give them the answers they are looking for quickly and efficiently. If they then click out from us to an airline and make a booking, we take a commission. It's very simple.
Q: Any future plans you wish to share?
A: We have a number of ideas that we think would revolutionise the way people book flights, but this would only be possible with a serious cash injection because it would take the kind of technical and marketing budget that we don’t have. Calling all investors - you know where to find us!