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NORAD prepared to track Santa's flight for 66th year

The tradition of tracking Santa has been alive and well since 1955.
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

ATLANTA — The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) will be tracking Santa all around the world this Christmas Eve, Dec. 24. However, things will be a little different this year due to the pandemic.

Those looking to keep up with the jolliest man's yuletide journey can visit NORAD's tracker at the agency's website. The website features a holiday countdown, games, holiday music, Santa's North Pole Village and more.

Mobile users can download NORAD's Santa tracker app as well. Apple users can download here, and Android users can download here.

Updates on Santa's journey will begin at 4 a.m. Eastern Time on Christmas Eve, and users can call in to 1-877-Hi-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) to ask about Santa's whereabouts as of 6 a.m. Amazon Alexa users can ask for updates on Santa's whereabouts through the NORAD Tracks Santa skill.

Due to COVID-19 concerns, however, the NORAD Tracks Santa Operations Center will have fewer phone operators this year. Consequently, callers will sometimes be greeted with an automated update on Santa's whereabouts.

NORAD has continued the tradition of tracking Santa around the globe since 1958, following the 1955 publication of a local newspaper that informed children they could call Santa directly for updates. The number was misprinted, leading callers to a quite surprised U.S. Air Force colonel, NORAD revealed in a news release.

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