Seattle Avionics Softwares Voyager SmartPlan Premier Flight Planner is the first software package to upload flight plans directly into the WAAS-enabled Garmin 430/530 nav/com and G1000 series. Just slip the SD card from your G1000 into your computer, and upload the flight plan, or use a special reader/writer to do the same for the 430/530. Company president John Rutter noted that the new capability allows pilots to upload and download flight plans in about 5 seconds (including altitude changes), a real improvement over manually inputting each waypoint.
Seattle Avionics also partnered with Flight Guide Publications Online, integrating much of the Flight Guide information into the flight planner, such as high-resolution airport diagrams and fuel prices, updated daily through AirNav. Voyager also provides wind- and fuel-optimized routes, using the autorouter to take fuel prices into account. Rutter said the company’s research showed that between a quarter and a third of the time, a straight line route is not the most efficient or economical route.
Seattle Avionics server downloads AirNav fuel price changes every evening, and they’re updated as soon as they’re available. SmartPlan Premier comes with a current set of charts and plates that expire 28 to 56 days after activation. At that point, an optional subscription through Flight Guide will kick in: VFR, IFR or electronic flight bag charts are available for $69 annually or $49 for six months, integrating the Flight Guide information into all of the Voyager modules. The subscription will automatically update through an Internet connection; you just need to be connected for 15 minutes every 28 days (and who actually leaves their computer off for more than a month?). Seattle Avionics guarantees that as long as you’ve had that 15-minute monthly connection, the chart you view or print will be current.
The package comes with licenses for three computers, and a full free trial may be downloaded from Seattle Avionics Software. After five days, the trial version will expire, and the full version may be purchased and activated online. Voyager SmartPlan Premier is PC-compatible, and also runs on Macs using BootCamp, Parallels, or VMware Fusion, all free programs. Rutter added that version 4.2 will be released by the end of April.