Airmap vs Kittyhawk for Drone LAANC Approval: What If They Don't Agree?

Airmap vs Kittyhawk for Drone LAANC Approval: What If They Don't Agree?

The @Federal Aviation Administration works with two main companies when it comes to L.A.A.N.C. approvals for drone pilots in restricted airspace, Airmap and Kittyhawk (aka B4UFly). Both apps are very handy when needing to get approval through an app based system quickly. But what do you do when those two apps don’t agree? We ran into just that situation when preparing for a vacation to the Great Smoky Mountains later this year.

What would you do?

21 Comments

  1. Paul Shampay on September 3, 2022 at 8:34 pm

    Wilderness Areas are also off limits to drones. AirMap shows them in Red, but Aloft doesn’t mark them that way, they seem to only mark National Parks.

  2. G2 The-R on September 3, 2022 at 8:36 pm

    If Airmap is an FAA endorsed LAANC tool and they approve you, fly. That’s your documentation. As long as you stay within the parameters of your documented flight plan you should be good good.

  3. David Er on September 3, 2022 at 8:39 pm

    That is an interesting situation. I was wondering about that since I started using these apps. I’m interested to see what happens. I’ll check back with you.

  4. Chainsaw FPV on September 3, 2022 at 8:40 pm

    Good subject!

  5. Some stuff I thought you might like on September 3, 2022 at 8:40 pm

    Airmap appears to be using Park Boundaries, including connecting Gov roads, which is why you had a boundary to the north. Kittyhawk is using FAA National Park boundary that matches the VFR Sectional, but the boundary looks to be further out on KH than is depicted on the sectional. In this case, go with Airmap and know where the boundary of the Park lies in case you are questioned.
    I verified this with ForeFlight software.

  6. BirdBrain Aerial Operations on September 3, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    There are quite a few discrepancies between the two apps mapping. Here where I live Aloft says you can fly in San Pablo bay national wildlife refuge while Airmap designates no fly. Also huge discrepancy regarding national seashore along the southern coast of California. Very odd how the FAA endorse both apps. I guess if we are going to pay for takeoff and landings the responsibility can go to the entity approving the fights and collecting the fees.

  7. 1silvervespa on September 3, 2022 at 8:44 pm

    What is their Claim for not flying in a National park …. which your taxes pay for hummm . Land of the fee ah huh …. sure .

  8. 1silvervespa on September 3, 2022 at 8:46 pm

    You know that only the FAA has the last word ….. so what do you think .
    When someone there says I don’t know it’s simple you say to that person " Can I Speak To Your Supervisor " ? Because they all have someone above them .

  9. Migs on September 3, 2022 at 8:47 pm

    Easy, ‘National’ Park. You should know that drones are not allowed. You may get approval from the ranger for a state park, but typically you will have to take some serious steps. Worth it?? You decide.

    Talk to the ranger, you may be surprised. Saying to choose the parent that gives you candy only comes with risk. They can charge you with a slew of things not related to airspace.

  10. M B_ on September 3, 2022 at 8:49 pm

    I had this same issue just yesterday!

  11. Eric Hill on September 3, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    Have you tried to manually check a sectional chart – just curious….

  12. DKK on September 3, 2022 at 8:52 pm

    Use the one that supports your mission!

  13. Blake Love on September 3, 2022 at 8:52 pm

    I get the same from Kittyhawk tells me I cant fly where I’m at but I can use Airmap and its just fine with it. Needless to say Kittyhawk went to the garbage bin.. I’ll use the one it lets me fly..

  14. anonymous on September 3, 2022 at 8:52 pm

    tbh once geofencing garbage gets bad and you have to pay per flight take off. I’m going to move to a a DIY drone with everything unlocked and not licensed..
    For your issue with authorization. The only accurate site is DJI no fly zone’s website and you can pre-authorize your flight there just switch your mobile browser to desktop mode if you are on the road.
    I fly in the middle of nowhere on hikes i should need authorization ever because there is nothing/no one around me. I find flying in an urban area as pointless and these are the reasons why the governments are clamping on drone flying.

  15. luke scott on September 3, 2022 at 8:59 pm

    So crazy that i watched this tonight… im on vacation near Gatlinburg right now. I flew my drone this morning after checking Aloft(formerly Kittyhawk). It showed me as outside, but right on the edge of the national park. I would say just check the map on the national park service website.

  16. L&C's Journey of Discovery on September 3, 2022 at 9:00 pm

    I ran into the exact same problem just up the road in Wears Valley. AirMap was showing the park boundaries which displayed the gap along Rt. 321 where we were staying. Kitty Hawk negated that area by bleeding over the gap. Like you, I checked the exact location of the park boundaries and had to make an educated decision about what to do. I flew, and stayed within a half mile north and south of my location and well away from the park boundaries.

    It shouldn’t be this complicated, but here we are.

    Thanks for the video.

  17. DKK on September 3, 2022 at 9:01 pm

    AirMap has started telling me it doesn’t support swarm operations.. I am unable to fly in any controlled airspace regardless of the flight altitude

  18. 1silvervespa on September 3, 2022 at 9:05 pm

    This must cost a Crapload of Taxes to operate …… wow.

  19. Dark Nes21 on September 3, 2022 at 9:11 pm

    Have you reached out to Kittyhawk or airmaps?

  20. Michael Siracuse on September 3, 2022 at 9:23 pm

    I’m going with Kitty Hawk on this one. The issue is related to the prohibition of aircraft taking off within 10 miles of the park boundary. Not an FAA mandate but a state mandate because of noise & the 90’s helicopter tour industry. The FAA owns park overflight but TN owns the 10 mile buffer.

  21. Matthew Neale on September 3, 2022 at 9:28 pm

    What about checking B4UFly? This is the one actually recommended on the FAA site in places like DroneZone. I have Kittyhawk and B4UFly on my phone.

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