Earlier this year, Delta announced changes to their Delta mobile app, available for both iOS and Android devices, that will allow passengers to track their checked baggage from the moment they check it in, to when they receive it at baggage claim at their final destination. Delta is the first U.S. carrier to offer a luggage tracking tool of this nature. The app comes after Delta announced in April, their $50 million investment in Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) baggage tracking technology.
How Does the Baggage Tracking Technology Work?
Once you drop your baggage off at the Delta counter, it will have a bag tag equipped with the RFID technology placed on it. This allows the baggage to be tracked in real time. Checkpoints along the bag's journey will track its movement and then send the location information to the passenger's phone via the Delta app. Delta is using this technology at over 80 U.S. airports to date.
Better baggage handling techniques have already shrunk Delta's misplaced baggage by 68% over the past 10 years, and they estimate that the technology will result in a further 10% decrease in misplaced baggage. Delta is already the best airline in the U.S. when it comes to misplaced bags. The other U.S. carriers need to get onboard with the RFID technology if they plan to compete.
It is great to see Delta investing in this kind of technology. There's no worse way to start or end a trip than having an airline lose your baggage. I am a firm believer that you get what you pay for when it comes to air travel, and I hope we see more airlines invest in the passenger experience like this. Delta already has a very low rate of lost luggage, and this will only decrease that number.
I had a chance to try this new app update out on a recent business trip to San Francisco. It's slick and I received a notification as soon as my bag entered the baggage claim carousel. This alerted me to start looking for it, and within seconds, I saw my bag coming towards me. I imagine in any situation that the airline would happen to lose your luggage, this would greatly speed up the process of tracking it down.