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Wikitravel talk:RDF Expedition/Airport codes

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What about ICAO codes? Wikipedia notes that IATA codes will eventually be switched over to the ICAO codes. Until that happens I'd also like an ICAO code template. -- Sapphire 16:07, 10 October 2006 (EDT)

Done. It may be a good idea to combine the two. --Evan 16:17, 10 October 2006 (EDT)
That would probably be easier for the community and the editor. -- Sapphire 16:44, 10 October 2006 (EDT)

Evan, thanks. The part that's confusing to me is what the templates actually look like on the page. Should the template pages have examples? And I assume the RDF accommodates multiple entries per page?--justfred 16:51, 10 October 2006 (EDT)

I'm not sure the template page can have examples of including itself... but you can see an example at El Centro. --Evan 17:25, 10 October 2006 (EDT)
How about {{IATA|IPL}} using the nowiki tag? I'll do an example on the template page, see what you think.--justfred 17:54, 10 October 2006 (EDT)

Another suggestion[edit]

IATA also has station codes for railroad stations. It might be useful to have this information too. The problem that I've encountered with railroad companies, most notably with Central/Southern/Eastern Europe rail companies are that web sites are in the local language only so it's impossible to figure out which station is which. Also, it's impossible to convey the message about where you want to go if you're speaking to someone at the Lodz domestic station since no one speaks English. -- Sapphire 17:36, 10 October 2006 (EDT)


IATA vs. ICAO[edit]

Swept in from pub

I realize that ICAO is the international standard, and will eventually supplant IATA, but to me, edits like this seem silly, because in the U.S. the two codes are so similar. Is that just me? I couldn't find any documentation of whether we should be listing both codes or not. LtPowers 18:42, 26 January 2010 (EST)

If the only difference in the states is the country identifier, it does indeed seem silly - though they might be useful for Alaska. Have anyone actually encountered ICAO use in ticketing/route scheduling outside Russia/ex-Soviet block? --Stefan (sertmann) talk 20:08, 26 January 2010 (EST)
Those are perfectly good edits. For starters, although many airports in the U.S. indeed have ICAO codes that happen to be simply their IATA codes and a one-letter prefix, there are also several airports whose ICAO and IATA codes are completely different. Second, as a traveller you ought to be aware that the world is more than just the U.S.A. ;-) Many countries (in fact, make that most countries!) have an ICAO prefix of 2 characters. As a result, outside the U.S.A. it's actually very common for an airport to have ICAO and IATA codes that aren't even remotely similar.
However, as Sertman indicated, processes that are visible to the general public (e.g. ticketing) commonly use IATA codes. The ICAO codes are mostly used by the aviators themselves for processes that are less visible to the general public, such as navigation and weather bulletins (METAR/TAF).
So, to wrap it up, I think that mentioning an airport's ICAO code should not be strict requirement because the average person won't know what to do with it, but there's nothing wrong with mentioning ICAO codes either and I certainly don't think they should be removed.Skysmurf 21:31, 27 January 2010 (EST)
But it comes back to the question - Will a traveller ever need to know that ICAO code? If not, it is at best a waste of space, and at worse confusing to the traveller who doesn't know which code they will need. Saying that the average person doesn't know what to do with it is an indication we should omit it. --inas 21:59, 27 January 2010 (EST)
I see your point. Personally I'd prefer to see ICAO codes because I know how to read METAR/TAF weather reports and judging from Stefans remark there are apparently areas where ICAO codes are used instead of IATA codes. But whether it's confusing? I'm not sure. Some articles mention IATA codes only, others mention both. Perhaps we should gather some more opinions here and then establish a site-wide guideline on this.Skysmurf 23:22, 27 January 2010 (EST)

I just went to the Aeroflot site, hoping I could follow Stefan's hunch and book a flight using the ICAO codes, but no such luck - all IATA there. --inas 00:01, 28 January 2010 (EST)

That's surprising, since I've run into a dozen of airports in Russia without IATA codes; Komsomolsk, Okha and Nogliki even though they are all served regularly by at least SAT Airlines [1] --Stefan (sertmann) talk 09:30, 28 January 2010 (EST)