Robert Gonzalez 16 August 2018
In June 2013 all IATA members at the Joint Passenger Services Resolutions Conference unanimously agreed to IATA Resolution 753 for Baggage Tracking. It gave the airlines 5 years to implement a solution to track bags along their journey in four tracking points:
1) Passenger handover to the airline
2) Loading of the bag into the aircraft
3) Delivery to the transfer area
4) Return to the passenger.
Furthermore, this tracking information must be shared with the next airport in the journey. This capability was required to be in place by June-18 and is intended to encourage airlines to further reduce mishandling by implementing cross-industry tracking for every baggage journey.
In an unofficial industry survey last month (me ringing-up industry colleagues) I was pleased to hear that many of the airlines had “already adopted” or “had begun to adopt” a solution to help them reach compliance. However, my survey was conducted in July-18 and I was surprised at the number of carriers that “were still considering their options” or “had no plans” to adopt a solution in the near term.
When pressed as to what were the hold-backs were, they explained the rationale behind their thinking with the principal reasons being:
- the cost of tracking/scanning technology
- infrastructure costs
- messaging costs. Some carriers are saying that the fines associated with non-compliance are less than the costs of being compliant which in and of itself goes against the very essence of the resolution.
In the past, their concerns would have been warranted and indeed justified, however technology has progressed to the point that the cost of common tracking technology has substantially fallen, and the solution can now even incorporate RFID technology.
While Wi-Fi has traditionally been the chosen option for data connectivity, the provision of cellular networks and cloud computing is often used in less developed countries and is also well-suited for areas where the cost of deploying a Wi-Fi mesh network would be prohibitively high.
Finally, Type B messaging can be very expensive especially with the distribution of BPMs, however with the use of direct messaging technology such as MQSeries or XML, there are no on-going messaging fees. All-in-all there is no longer any solid reason not to adopt a solution.
So, are you compliant? If not, we can help.
Our fully IATA 753 compliant FirstBag Mobile solution is an App that you can download on any handheld scanner or Apple/Android device and be up and running in less than 15 minutes. We call this “download-and-go!” Our FirstBag Backoffice bag management and reconciliation application (BRS) allows you to run our solution on any computer in your network with Internet access. This means you no longer have to purchase additional back office workstations.
With FirstBag Mobile and FirstBag BackOffice, you can be up and running in less than a day for just pennies per bag. Sounds too good to be true? Please contact me and I will provide you with the names and contact details of senior level airline directors who have recently selected Zafire as their vendor of choice for IATA 753 compliance. Additionally, we can offer a 30-day no cost trial at the location of your choice so that you can see first-hand the many benefits of FirstBag.