Joint military command tracks Santa’s flight

December 26, 2023 | by


As children around the world eagerly await Santa’s arrival on Christmas, the military is closely tracking his every move. The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), responsible for protecting U.S. and Canadian airspace, has launched its website, social media sites, and mobile app, loaded with games and activities to engage kids and keep them up-to-date on Santa’s whereabouts. Using radar, sensors, aircraft, and even Christmas spirit, NORAD reports on Santa’s sleigh movements since his takeoff from the North Pole. They have already traced Santa’s journey through Bangkok, Burma, Tibet, China, and Russia, distributing nearly 2 billion gifts along the way. While NORAD’s findings cannot be independently verified, they use the same technology employed to keep North America safe, and they even claim to track the light from Rudolph’s red nose. With the potential for high-tech secrets and advanced capabilities, NORAD remains fascinated by Santa’s methods and encourages children and adults alike to join in the Santa-tracking tradition.

Joint military command tracks Santa’s flight

Joint military command tracks Santas flight

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Armed with radar, sensors, aircraft and Christmas spirit

The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) in Colorado is taking on a special mission during the holiday season – tracking Santa’s flight around the world. Equipped with advanced radar, sensors, and aircraft, NORAD is able to monitor Santa’s movements since his takeoff from the North Pole. But it’s not just technology that fuels this operation; the military personnel at NORAD also bring a dose of Christmas spirit to their mission.

NORAD’s website, social media sites, and mobile app

To keep children engaged and informed about Santa’s journey, NORAD has developed a range of online platforms. Its website,, offers a wealth of interactive features, including games, movies, books, and music related to Santa Claus. Moreover, NORAD has a robust presence on social media, where it delivers real-time updates on Santa’s location to eager children and their families. Additionally, NORAD has a mobile app that provides a convenient way for kids to track Santa’s whereabouts on their smartphones or tablets.

Joint military command tracks Santas flight

Santa’s current location and gift distribution

Through the use of their technology and intelligence, NORAD is able to report on Santa’s movements and gift distribution since he set off on his Christmas Eve journey. Starting from the moment Santa takes flight, NORAD updates its followers on his current location and the number of gifts he has delivered. This detailed information allows children to visualize Santa’s progress and anticipate his arrival in their own regions.

Tracking Santa with technology

NORAD’s ability to track Santa is made possible through a combination of advanced technology and some age-old techniques. The military command uses radar and sensors to detect Santa’s sleigh, along with aircraft to monitor his movements. However, one key element of tracking Santa is the iconic light emitted by Rudolph’s red nose. With this distinct marker, NORAD is able to follow Santa’s journey with precision.

Joint military command tracks Santas flight

Santa’s high-tech secrets

While NORAD has a good understanding of Santa’s sleigh capabilities, some aspects of his high-tech secrets remain a mystery. Santa does not file a flight plan, which means he may have some surprises up his sleeve. It’s even possible that Santa is utilizing artificial intelligence to enhance his navigation and gift distribution. NORAD eagerly awaits the opportunity to uncover any advanced capabilities in this year’s flight.

The start of the Santa-tracking tradition

The tradition of tracking Santa’s flight originated in 1955, thanks to a misprinted telephone number in a newspaper department store ad. Air Force Col. Harry Shoup, who was on duty at NORAD’s predecessor, received a call from a child who believed she was dialing Santa. Col. Shoup, thinking quickly on his feet, assured the child that he was indeed Santa and began fielding more calls. Recognizing the joy this brought to children, NORAD continued the tradition and assigned a duty officer to answer calls from eager youngsters.

Joint military command tracks Santas flight

Volunteers at the operations center

To ensure the Santa-tracking operation runs smoothly, NORAD relies on the assistance of numerous volunteers. Around 1,100 individuals lend their time and expertise to answer calls from children and provide updates on Santa’s whereabouts. These volunteers come from diverse backgrounds and are based in a dedicated operations center at Peterson Space Force Base in Colorado Springs. The atmosphere in the operations center on December 24th is described as particularly festive, as everyone comes together to make Christmas magical for children worldwide.

Calling NORAD for Santa updates

Curious children and their families can call NORAD directly to receive live updates on Santa’s exact location. By dialing 1-877 HI-NORAD (1-877-446-6723), they can speak with knowledgeable NORAD staff members who will provide the latest information on Santa’s journey. The NORAD operations center remains open until midnight MST on Christmas Eve, ensuring that children have the opportunity to connect with Santa’s trackers throughout the evening.

As the holiday season approaches, the joint military command at NORAD gears up to track Santa’s flight with their impressive arsenal of technology and unwavering Christmas spirit. Through their website, social media sites, and mobile app, children can follow Santa’s journey and enjoy various fun-filled activities. NORAD’s real-time updates on Santa’s location allow kids to anticipate his arrival, while the use of radar, sensors, and aircraft ensure accurate tracking. Although Santa’s high-tech secrets remain undisclosed, NORAD’s dedicated volunteers at the operations center work tirelessly to answer calls and provide Santa updates. So this Christmas Eve, if you’re curious about Santa’s whereabouts, just give NORAD a call and join in the excitement of tracking the world’s most beloved gift-giver.

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