Jet Airliner Spotting Guide
With the wide variety of jet airliners serving the worldwide travel market today, identification of individual manufacturers and aircraft can be a bit tricky.
Included on this page is a quick and easy guide to spotting the common jet airliners of the day. We include airliners from Airbus, Boeing, Embraer and Bombardier.
We don't deal with turboprops, business jets or military aircraft on this site. And while we recognize the existence and important of early jetliners such as the 707, DC-8 and Convair 880, they are not the main focus on this site. But you can read about spotting older, vintage jet airliners and view their photographs.
Let's get started ...
Does It Have Four Engines?
It Looks Like a Three Engine "Tri-Jet"
If the airliner has three engines, one in the tail, and in addition one each under each wing or two on the aft fuselage, it is an older aircraft, probably a Boeing 727, Douglas DC-10, McDonnell-Douglas MD-11 or Lockheed L-1011.
Few of these are in service today, and many of the ones that are in the air cargo marketplace.
This Airliner Only Has Two Engines ... What Is It?
Now for the hard part! Most jet airliners in service today have two engines, one under each wing. Most active airliners manufactured by Boeing and Airbus have this configuration.
The Boeing 757 twin-engine is out of production but still in active usage.
Several aircraft reside in the "twin-engine, wide-body" category, including: