iOS/iPadOS 13.5 and ForeFlight

Compatibility testing between ForeFlight and iOS/iPadOS 13.5 is complete and we are issuing the “all-clear” to ForeFlight customers. Feel free to update at your convenience. Stay tuned to our company news, Facebook page, or Twitter feed for announcements regarding future updates.

Follow this link to learn how you can check which Apple iOS version you are currently running, and follow this link to learn how you can update your iOS version.

What’s New in ForeFlight Dispatch (May 2020)

We’ve continued updating Dispatch since the last post to expand its capabilities even further, with new highly-requested features like Custom Airports, global RAIM prediction, expanded map layers, and more.

Custom Airports

Unlock flight planning to and from any location you want by defining your own custom airports that can be used just like regular airports. Account admins can access the Custom Airports page in Dispatch Settings. From here you can view the details of all custom airports on your account so far, delete any of them, and create new custom airports.

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Every custom airport is defined simply by a unique four-letter identifier, a name, and a set of lat/long coordinates. When adding a new custom airport you can either enter or paste these coordinates into the proper text field manually, or use the built-in map to zoom in on the airport’s location and right click to mark the coordinates.

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In addition to the admin-only Custom Airports view, any flight planner or pilot in Dispatch can add a custom airport right from the Flight Edit view. Start typing in any of the airport fields to see the “Add a custom airport” button appear at the bottom of the drop-down, and click it to add the new airport’s remaining details and save it to the account. You can then immediately use that custom airport for the flight plan. When you file a flight plan to or from a custom airport, Dispatch automatically provides the airport’s coordinates and name in the proper fields of the ICAO filing form, allowing you to file the flight plan as easily as you would with known airports.

Global RAIM Prediction

Dispatch now supports receiver autonomous integrity monitoring (RAIM) analysis for flight plans anywhere in the world, not just in the U.S. A new setting switch in the Dispatch Settings menu allows you to set RAIM to be U.S.-only or Worldwide. With Worldwide RAIM enabled, the Dispatch briefing package includes a new page containing details about the calculation and any predicted outages for both your departure and destination airports.

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Route Map Improvements

Dispatch’s Route Map includes new map layers that provide information about airport-specific weather like Surface Winds, Visibility, Ceiling, and more. These layers are all derived from each airport’s latest METAR, so they’re available for any airport reporting METARs anywhere in the world.

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The Route Map also includes new government chart layers for the U.S., Canada, and Europe, based on which regions are included in your ForeFlight subscription. Both VFR and IFR High/Low charts are included for each region, bringing Dispatch’s Route Map more in line with the capability of the mobile app.

Lastly, you can now collapse the Performance table just above the Route Map in the Flight Edit view by clicking the caret button on the left. The Route Map then expands upward to fill the space, allowing flight planners to work with a larger map.

New Operational Rules: Type of Flight & Avoid FIR

Dispatch supports two new types of Operational Rules to give account administrators more centralized control over flights planned in Dispatch. The “Type of Flight” rule allows you to determine what flight category certain flights must be filed under. Options include G – General Aviation, N – Non-scheduled, S – Scheduled, M – Military, and X – Other. Any flights matching the rule’s criteria (departure airport, destination airport, and/or aircraft tail number) will automatically use the selected flight type, but flight planners can manually change it if needed.

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The second new rule is adapted from the “Avoid FIR” route constraint used to generate a Recommended Route that avoids certain airspace. Click the Airspaces dropdown on the right and scroll through the list of FIRs, or search by FIR name, identifier, or country, selecting all the FIRs you want to include in the rule. After defining the rule’s criteria and saving it, any flights matching the criteria will automatically adopt the Avoid FIR route constraint for all the FIRs you defined.

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Marked Positions, Arrival Time Planning on Flights, and More in ForeFlight’s April Release

ForeFlight 12.3 includes Marked Positions, Arrival Time Planning on the Flights view, the ability to tap Extended Runways for information, and more. 

Marked Positions

Drop markers along your route during a flight to mark points of interest or comply with position plotting requirements, then view or share the marked position after the flight. 

Enable Marked Positions in the Map Settings menu (cog button on the Maps view) under Map Overlays. This adds a Marker button on the left side of the screen that you can tap to drop a marker at your current GPS position. Each new marker automatically captures the current time, your coordinates, GPS altitude, and ground speed, and allows you to add notes, rename the marker, or change any of the preset values besides time. Tap Save to add the marker to the map. If you don’t specify a name for the marker, it will be named for the time that it was dropped. 

Tap on any saved marker to view its information, and tap Edit to change any of the values, save it as a user waypoint, or delete the marker. Marked Positions can’t be added to your route, so saving one as a user waypoint is useful if you need to route to a previously-marked position.

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Marked Positions automatically disappear from the map 15 minutes after landing, but any marked positions made during a recorded flight will be included in the flight’s Track Log. Tap Info in the top-right of the track log view to find a list of all the Marked Positions made during the flight. Exporting a Track Log as a KML file will include the Marked Positions, allowing you to view them in other apps along with your recorded flight. 

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You can also view previously-marked positions in the Flights view if any Marked Positions were created between the planned departure and arrival times of a flight. This applies retroactively as well, so you can associate a new flight plan with old Marked Positions simply by moving back the ETD to the flight’s actual departure time. Marked Positions appear in the flight plan’s route map, which you can tap to expand and view information about each marker. View a list of all the flight’s Marked Positions by scrolling to the bottom of Flights and tapping Marked Positions under Flight Log. Using the Send To button from this view will export only the Marked Positions, not the Track Log, allowing you to create a clean record for documentation purposes. Use the KML option to view the exported file in other mapping apps, and use the CSV option to view the list of Marked Positions in a spreadsheet program.

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Marked Positions offers a convenient and flexible means of recording and sharing position data for any flight. Marked Positions are available with ForeFlight Performance plans.

 

Arrival Time Planning on Flights

Plan a flight based on a desired Arrival Time, rather than a Departure Time, using the new Arrival Time Planning feature. Just select a target arrival time and ForeFlight will work backwards to compute the required departure time.

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On the Flights view, look for the new ETD/ETA toggle to the left of the date/time selector, which is now the first line of the flight plan form. Switch between ETD/ETA to change the date and time of either. Change the date/time of your arrival and ForeFlight will display your new departure time at the top of the flight, and in the Flight Summary on the left.

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The Flight Summary now displays each flight’s ETD, ETE, and ETA for quick reference. Flight Summaries also display a paperclip icon when a flight has an associated file. 

Arrival time Planning is available with ForeFlight Performance plans.

 

Tap Extended Centerlines for Runway Information

Quickly access runway information for any airport in your route by tapping the labels at the ends of Extended Centerlines when they are enabled. 

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Access Extended Centerlines in the Map Settings menu (cog button on the Maps view) under the Map Overlays section. Tap the Extended Centerline marker and ForeFlight will display a popup window with information about the runway. 

Tap “Select Runway” in the information popup to add that runway to your route and highlight it, and tap “Straight In” for any runway at your destination airport to both highlight it and add a straight-in 2nm final to your route, which you can also add using the Traffic Pattern option in Procedure Advisor.

 

SID/STAR Aircraft Type Restrictions

Easily identify aircraft type restrictions for departure and arrival procedures with new colored tags. Tags for Piston, Turboprop, and Jet aircraft appear in the list of procedure plates when viewing an airport’s information on the Airports or Maps views. The presence of one or more tags indicates that the procedure is restricted to the aircraft types shown. 

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ForeFlight Airport Info Documents

Access helpful information about many airports in Europe with new “Airport Info” documents found in the ForeFlight section of Airport Procedures. These documents include the same Jeppesen-sourced information previously available in Jeppesen Mobile FliteDeck VFR, including airport-specific notes for ground movement, general aviation access, VFR and helicopter procedures, and more.

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The documents are included in the “Aerodrome Charts & AIP” download option for countries in Europe, and appear in the Downloads list as (for example) “Germany (ForeFlight).”

iOS and iPadOS 13.4.1 and ForeFlight

Compatibility testing between ForeFlight and iOS/iPadOS 13.4.1 is complete and we are issuing the “all-clear” to ForeFlight customers. Feel free to update at your convenience. Stay tuned to our company news, Facebook page, or Twitter feed for announcements regarding future updates.

Follow this link to learn how you can check which Apple iOS version you are currently running, and follow this link to learn how you can update your iOS version.

iOS 12.4.6 and ForeFlight

Compatibility testing between ForeFlight and iOS 12.4.6 is complete and we are issuing the “all-clear” to ForeFlight customers. Feel free to update at your convenience. Stay tuned to our company news, Facebook page, or Twitter feed for announcements regarding future updates.

Follow this link to learn how you can check which Apple iOS version you are currently running, and follow this link to learn how you can update your iOS version.

iOS/iPadOS 13.4 and ForeFlight

Compatibility testing between ForeFlight and iOS/iPadOS 13.4 is complete and we are issuing the “all-clear” to ForeFlight customers. Feel free to update at your convenience. Stay tuned to our company news, Facebook page, or Twitter feed for announcements regarding future updates.

Follow this link to learn how you can check which Apple iOS version you are currently running, and follow this link to learn how you can update your iOS version.

3D Approach Preview, Controlled Airspace Frequencies, and More in ForeFlight’s March Release

ForeFlight 12.2 includes 3D Approach Preview, Mountain Pass icons and other Basemap elements, quick-access airspace frequencies, and more. 

3D Approach Preview

3D Preview in ForeFlight displays markers for each waypoint in your route, including labeled approach fixes, allowing you to better visualize every step of your approach all the way down to the runway.

IMG_1079Access 3D Preview by creating a route on the Maps or Flights views and tapping the 3D button in the Flight Plan Editor or on the route map in the Flights view. 3D Preview displays each waypoint along your route using the same labeled markers shown on the map, and colors each leg orange, magenta, or blue to indicate past, current, and future legs as you play through the route.

3D Preview also features an interactive navlog located in the top right (at the bottom of the screen on iPhone), allowing you to view each waypoint and the distances between them. Scroll through the navlog or tap any waypoint to immediately jump to that leg of the flight. 

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When your route on the Maps view includes an approach procedure, 3D Preview shows all the approach fixes with corresponding icons, labels, and speed or altitude restrictions in 3D and in the navlog for any fixes that have them. ForeFlight also incorporates altitude restrictions into its depiction of the approach in 3D, providing a realistic view of the glideslope in relation to surrounding terrain.

You can preview any approach procedure on its own by tapping its bubble in the Route Editor and tapping “3D Procedure Preview”. This opens 3D Preview at the start of the approach, without the rest of your route, allowing you to quickly brief any approach.

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Learn more about 3D View at foreflight.com/3d. 3D Approach Preview is available with Performance Plus subscriptions.

 

Mountain Passes & Other Basemap Elements

ForeFlight’s High Resolution Basemap includes Jeppesen-sourced terrain and cultural elements such as mountain passes, highway labels, and more for improved inflight reference.

The basemap is what you see with no other charts or maps other than the Aeronautical Map enabled, and depicts terrain, roads, urban lighting, and more. Download the High Resolution Basemap for any region in More > Downloads.

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The High Resolution Basemap includes mountain pass icons for the United States and Europe which are oriented based on their direction and also indicate the pass name and elevation in feet.

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The basemap in Europe depicts cables and gondolas as black line segments, with labels indicating each cable’s maximum above-ground altitude in feet. You can enable or disable mountain passes and cables using the switch in Map Settings > Terrain.

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Labels for major roads and highways apply to US interstates, federal and state highways, and international motorways. These labels are tied to the setting for Major Roads and can be enabled or disabled in Map Settings > Cultural Elements.

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Change the size of any of these icons along with other Aeronautical Map elements using the slider in Map Settings (cog on the Maps view), just below the Aeronautical Map options.

 

Quick-Access Airspace Frequencies 

Easily locate frequencies for many kinds of controlled airspace on ForeFlight’s Maps view for quick inflight access. 

Tap-hold anywhere on the map to open the Add to Route popup, which lists any airspaces at the location you tapped. Those that have at least one associated frequency will include the frequency and its name at the bottom of that airspace’s summary, which you can tap to highlight the airspace on the map. If an airspace has more than one associated frequency it will indicate the number that are available. Tap the Details button to view these additional frequencies, as well as other information about that airspace. 

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If there are more than four frequencies, tap All Frequencies at the bottom of the Communications sections to see the full list. Any frequencies designated as Secondary include a note indicating this.

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Quick access to Jeppesen-sourced airspace frequencies right from the map helps you simplify your inflight workflow when flying into controlled airspace.

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Balkans Jeppesen VFR Data Coverage 

ForeFlight’s Aeronautical Map includes new Jeppesen VFR data covering Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro, Albania, Kosovo, and North Macedonia.

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Jeppesen’s digital VFR data includes VFR waypoints, entries and exits, traffic circuits, VFR routes, and more, and is included in the “Nav Database Supplement – Europe” download.

Updates to the Aeronautical Map in ForeFlight

We released several updates to ForeFlight’s Aeronautical map this month to make it easier to identify and differentiate different types of airspace in Europe. You can overlay the Aeronautical map on top of any other chart or map layer, and customize it in the Map Settings menu to show or hide different airspace types and limit what airspaces are shown by altitude.

The first change is that the color of Class C and D airspace in Europe is now magenta instead of blue, making them easier to distinguish from other types of controlled airspace. Here you can see the differences between the old airspace colors and the new style:

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Another update is the addition of type and designator names on airspace labels for RMZs and Special Use Airspace (SUA) in Europe to help you quickly view more useful airspace information. 

For example, airspace labels for Restricted Areas used to only indicate the lower and upper altitude limits, now they read “R-XXX: Lower – Upper”, giving you a better sense of the nearby airspace.

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Example for RMZs:

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Keep up with our latest app updates here and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for helpful tips to get the most out of ForeFlight.

What’s New in ForeFlight Dispatch (February 2020)

Since launching late last year Dispatch has already gained numerous new features and workflow improvements to help flight departments plan, collaborate, and monitor flights more efficiently. From flight attachments and more prominent weather information to flexible crew assignments, change tracking, and more, every week brings significant enhancements, and we’re not planning to slow down any time soon. Read on to learn about each new and improved feature and how they can benefit your operation.

Want to learn more about ForeFlight Dispatch? Visit foreflight.com/dispatch or sign up for a personalized demo with a ForeFlight Sales representative here.

Attach Flight Documents from Dispatch

Building on the introduction of the Files in Flights capability to ForeFlight late last year, flight planners can now attach documents to flights right from Dispatch and deliver them to assigned crew members in seconds. Attach PDFs, images, Microsoft Word documents, and many other file types to make them accessible right in ForeFlight for viewing and printing before the flight.

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Click the Files tab at the top of a flight in Dispatch and click the plus button to browse for files to add, or simply drag and drop files from your computer’s file explorer to upload them to the flight. Dispatch supports uploading files of 25MB or less using any of the following file types: pdf, tiff, tif, jpg, jpeg, gif, png, bmp, bmpf, doc, docx, xlsx, pptx, ppt, csv.

Information about uploaded documents appears below the upload button, including each document’s name, date created, date last updated, and the type of the file (e.g. pdf, csv, etc.). You can rename attached files by clicking the pencil button to the right of each file’s name, which will also update the file’s name in ForeFlight Mobile. Click Download on the right to download the file to your computer (helpful if the file was uploaded by someone else), and click Delete to permanently remove the file from the flight.

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Any file that you upload to a flight will appear in the Files tab on ForeFlight’s Flights view for any crew members assigned to the flight (excluding ad-hoc crew members who are not part of your ForeFlight account – read more about ad-hoc crew members below). A red dot appears on the Files tab when new documents are added. Crew members can view the documents and share or print them.

By-Leg Altitude Changes in Route Builder

Dispatch’s Route Builder now supports changes in cruise altitude between different legs of a flight, allowing you to take advantage of more favorable winds, comply with airspace restrictions, and more. After selecting a route on the Flight Edit page, click the Route Builder button to view the list of waypoints on the left.

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Every waypoint that isn’t part of a procedure (departure, arrival, or approach) has an Edit button to its right that you can use to change the flight’s altitude at that waypoint. Set the new altitude on the left using the up/down arrow buttons or by typing in a new altitude, expressed as a flight level.

The dropdown menu to the right lets you select how the new altitude will be applied to the flight: “Until waypoint” applies the new altitude to every editable waypoint up to and including the current waypoint without changing the altitudes of subsequent waypoint, while “After waypoint” applies the new altitude to every waypoint including and after the current one, leaving previous waypoints the same. Click the check button to confirm the changes and apply the new altitude, or click the cancel button to discard any altitude changes for that waypoint.

Waypoints that are part of the flight’s climb or descent won’t update their altitudes to match new altitudes for cruise waypoints, but they will update to reflect a new climb or descent profile as required by changes to the flight’s cruise altitude.

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Click back to the Flight Edit page and the new altitude changes are listed beneath the Selected Route field. The altitude changes are also reflected in ForeFlight’s Briefing and Navlog, ensuring that the flight’s crew members can view them once the flight is released.

More Prominent Airport Weather Information

To help flight planners quickly assess current and forecast weather that could impact a flight, Dispatch now provides important weather information in multiple easy-to-access places.

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On the main Flights List, click on the airport identifier in either the Departure or Destination column to view a new popup showing the airport’s latest METAR, TAF, and NOTAMs sorted in reverse-chronological order. Click the button at the bottom of this popup to bring you to the Dispatch Airport Information page for comprehensive information about each airport. Also on the Flights List, any airport with low IFR conditions expected at the time of your flight (based on a METAR or TAF) will show a purple LIFR label next to the airport identifier to warn flight planners of these conditions.

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In the Flight Edit view, the METAR/TAF/NOTAM popup is also now available when you click the Info button next to any airport in your route. Lastly, searching for an airport using any of the Airport fields now shows more information about each airport in the list, including the flight category from the most recent METAR, the latest wind and visibility reports, and the length of the longest runway.

Winds Aloft Map Layer

Dispatch’s built-in map now includes a global Winds Aloft forecast layer that you can use to quickly find favorable winds at different altitudes. Enable the layer by clicking the Layer button in the top-left of Dispatch’s map and selecting Winds Aloft at the top of the right-hand column. Just like the Winds Aloft layer in ForeFlight Mobile, global wind patterns are depicted using directional wind barbs that have a variable number of “legs” and different colors to indicate wind speed. Use the Altitude Slider on the right to view winds at different altitudes in intervals of 3,000 feet. Changing your flight’s planned altitude will cause the slider to automatically move to whichever altitude setting is closest to it.

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Unlike the mobile app, the Winds Aloft layer in Dispatch also provides a Time Slider to view wind forecasts for multiple time periods, up to more than 6 days in the future. Click the Play button on the right of the slider to animate the layer, showing how the winds change with each forecast period.

Saved Routes

Flight planners who always use the same route for a given airport pair can now load such routes more quickly using Saved Routes. Click the floppy disk button (we love a good throwback) on the right side of the Selected Route field to save the currently-entered route. The next time you plan a flight with the same departure and destination airports, that route will appear in the Routes List under a “Saved Routes” header.

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Account administrators can view and delete any saved routes on the account in the Saved Routes tab of the Dispatch Settings menu.

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Flight Change Tracking

Dispatch will track the history of changes made to each flight and by whom, giving account administrators greater oversight of flight plans in the system. The “Last Change” status at the bottom of the Flight Edit view shows which user made the last change to the flight. Click “(view history)” to see every major action made to the flight since it was created: the type of action is shown under the Event column (e.g. Created, Modified, Released, Filed, etc.), the user or system that initiated the action is shown under the By column (e.g. Scheduling, Dispatch user, Auto-compute), the user’s email address is shown to the right for each action made by a user, and the date/time of each action is shown in the rightmost column. Click the top of the Event or Time columns to reorder the list based on those columns.

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Assign Ad-Hoc Crew Members to Flights

Dispatch now has the ability to send email notifications to flight team members who are not included in your ForeFlight account. Provide flight details and updates to contract pilots, ground handlers, cabin attendants, or anyone else who needs to be notified simply by entering their email address in one of the Crew fields. This will add them to the flight as an “ad-hoc” pilot, and upon releasing or updating the flight they will receive the same notification email sent to pilots on your account, which includes a link to view the flight’s briefing.

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Unlike pilots on your account, ad-hoc pilots cannot access flights to which they are added using ForeFlight, even if they have an active ForeFlight subscription.

Auto-Refresh Flight Plans & Briefings

To ensure that crew members can access the most up-to-date information about their assigned flights, Dispatch can now automatically refresh a flight’s briefing and performance calculations after it’s been released. Enable the Auto-Refresh option in Dispatch’s Briefing Settings list to turn on Auto-Refresh for flights. Once enabled, this feature will refresh a flight’s Navlog, Briefing, and performance calculations every hour until one hour prior to departure. The refreshed information is automatically synced to crew members’ devices as long as they’re connected to the internet and running ForeFlight.

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Visit foreflight.com/dispatch to learn more about all the things Dispatch can do, or sign up for a personalized demo with a ForeFlight Sales representative here.

NOTAMs in Procedure Advisor, new Route Constraints, and More in our February Release

ForeFlight 12.1 includes NOTAMs in Procedure Advisor, new Route Constraints for the Recommended Route, and Auto Mode for the Altitude Slider on the Maps view. 

NOTAMs in Procedure Advisor

Procedure Advisor warns you of runway closures and other NOTAMs affecting airports in your route, giving you easier access to critical flight planning information. 

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After planning a route in the Flight Plan Editor (FPL button at the top of the Maps view), tap Procedure to access the Procedure Advisor. When viewing a list of runways for departures, approaches, arrivals, or traffic patterns, ForeFlight will add a “See NOTAM” or “Rwy Closed” tag to any runway that is closed or partially closed by NOTAM. 

Tap the View Alert NOTAM banner at the top of the runway list to view the relevant runway NOTAMs affecting that airport. 

Note that the NOTAM warnings shown in Procedure Advisor may not represent all applicable NOTAMs for your flight. 

 

New Route Constraints for the Recommended Route

Route Advisor now supports additional constraint types for the Recommended Route, giving you more flexibility to tailor routes to your own needs. Route Constraints and the Recommended route are available with ForeFlight Performance plans. 

IMG_0947 2.pngAfter entering departure and destination airports, selecting the aircraft and cruise profile, and setting an ETD, tap Routes on the right to open Route Advisor. Access the Route Constraint options by tapping the button in the top-right corner of Route Advisor. The new constraints allow you to specify any waypoint, navaid, or airport that you want to be included in or excluded from your route. 

 

In the Include Waypoints field, type in one or more waypoints, navaids, or airports separated by commas or spaces to ensure that the regenerated Recommended Route includes them. Do the same for the Avoid Waypoints field to ensure that the new route doesn’t include the specified waypoints.

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The Avoid FIR field allows you to select FIRs that you don’t want to fly over, allowing you to avoid potentially dangerous or costly airspace. The list of global FIRs is grouped by country and sorted alphabetically, with any FIRs overflown by your current route conveniently displayed at the top. Use the search bar to filter the list by country, FIR name, or FIR ICAO codes. Tap on any FIRs that you want to avoid and tap back to see them listed in the Avoid FIR field.

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Tap the Reset button in the top right of the Constraints view to reset all of the constraints to their default values. 

Tap the back button and Route Advisor will attempt to generate a new Recommended Route that complies with your constraints, while hiding any other routes that don’t comply with your constraints. ForeFlight lists the current constraints above the Route Advisor map, and you can tap on this list to return to the Constraints view.

 

Altitude Slider Inflight Auto Mode

Reduce your inflight workload by having ForeFlight automatically move the altitude slider for altitude-based weather layers to match your current altitude. 

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After takeoff, an Auto button appears above the altitude slider when any altitude-based weather layer is displayed. The slider will appear for all US, global, and ADS-B weather options for the Winds Aloft, Icing and Turbulence, and Cloud Tops weather layers. 

Tap the Auto button to enable Auto Mode, which sets the slider to whichever altitude setting is the closest to your current GPS altitude. The slider will continuously adjust to match your altitude as you climb or descend, showing you the most relevant weather information when you need it. 

To disable Auto Mode, tap the Auto button again or manually adjust the slider and it will leave the slider where you left it. Tap the slider above or below the slider to make it move one unit up or down.