Aircraft Code, Airline Designator Codes, Airport/City code , Currency Code

In the airlines industry, abbreviations and codes are very common. Several times the codes are picked up from the spellings of city/airport, so it becomes easy to guess its full form, but several times it is not like that, then it becomes complicated to guess. So, one has to remember the codes, there is no shortcut. There are several types of codes. Most of these codes are published in the Official Airline Guide (OAG) Book. The codification has been done by ICAO & IATA with the help of ISO (International Standardization Organization, Geneva). In the airline industry, we are using IATA/ISO codes.

  • Aircraft Codes

These codes are related to types of craft, e.g., pure jet (J), Prop Jet (T), Helicopter (H), Propeller (P) & Amphibian/Sea Plane (A). It also indicates companies and their models, e.g., Airbus Industrie 320 = A320, Boeing 737-400 = B-734 McDonnell Douglas = DC-8.

The codes also show special features such as M=mixed configuration (cargo + passenger), F= Freighter (Cargo), S= Special configuration. Now mix above two, e.g., Boeing 737-200 special = J 735, McDonnell Douglas Freighter = JD8F. Typically, all latest middle and large size planes are jet planes, so there is no need to write J, e.g., the largest Jumbo plane A-380 is a Jetplane.

  • Airline Designator Codes

All IATA member airlines of the world are designated by two-letter/ UFTA no. Codes which are used in all types of reservations, time tables, ticketing, legal documents, tariffs, airway bills, schedules and other transactions of the aviation business, e.g., Air India =AI, British Airways= BA, Air China= CA, Jet Airways = 9W, Air Deccan = DN, Indigo Air = 6E, Air Sahara = S2, Kingfisher = IT, etc.

  • City/Airport Codes

each town is referred to with three-letter codes. In the situation of multiple airports in a city, then each airport is given a separate code. These codes are crucial and used in all airline transactions, such as reservation, timetable, ticketing, and itinerary preparation. There are a large number of airport codes, but some important are given in the list of lesson 2. One should try to remember them. With practice, these codes become easy and handy.

  • Currency codes

IATA has a codified currency of each country.for the transaction of ticketing, fare calculation, tariff calculation of passengers, freight, there are used some codes to define that. IATA has also made their equivalency with GBP, USD & NUC, which is published from time to time in OAG Book & Air Traffic Book.

Besides these, there are several other types of codes that are used at different places in airline itinerary preparation and airline ticketing. These will be mentioned in their respective areas.


Reference: DDEKUK content isĀ  Written By: “Prof Ravi Kumar Bhushan” DTHM, KUK

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