Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Technology is changing the way baggage is handled

The SITA Baggage report 2017, says the rate of mishandled bags was 5.73 bags per thousand passengers in 2016, down 12.25 per cent from the previous year and the lowest ever recorded. However, financial costs remain high. The global bill for recovering bags and reuniting with their owners was $2.1 billion in 2016, says the report. IATA members have adopted resolution 753 requiring every piece of checked baggage to be tracked along its journey, by June 2018.

Responding to an email questionnaire, Maneesh Jaikrishna, Vice President, India & Subcontinent, Eastern and Southern Africa – SITA reveals strategies adopted for baggage management.

How was baggage handled earlier?

Over the past decade the focus for airports and airlines has been on improving the efficiency of baggage handling. As a result, the rate of mishandled bags has dropped by 70 per cent since 2007 due to investment in technologies and process improvements by the world’s airlines and airports.

However, further improvements are needed to manage the continued growth of passengers in the coming years. It is expected that that the industry’s baggage systems will handle more than 4.5 billion bags in 2017 alone. Therefore, a step change in the way the industry manages baggage is needed.

This change is being driven by the introduction of IATA‘s Resolution 753.

There are four mandatory tracking points at which the bag, via its unique 10-digit bag-tag number, must be recorded: at check-in, loading, transfer and at arrival, when the bag is delivered back to the passenger.

Once implemented, this tracking data will provide clear picture of where a bag is in its journey. This also allows airlines to pro-actively intervene to prevent bags from being mishandled.
15/11/17 V Sajeev Kumar/Business Line