About 23 million pieces of baggage were lost in airports worldwide in 2015, according to The Baggage Report 2016.
You think it is a lot? According to SITA, industry investments and innovations in baggage handling systems have resulted in the baggage mishandling rate reaching an all-time low in 2015! The air transport industry has cut the number of mishandled bags by 50% globally since 2007 (a major feat as the number of passangers does not cease to increase).
The improvement trend is expected to increase as technology is embedded in new baggage. The Internet Of Things is no longer restricted to your watch, your fridge and your car. Baggage manufacturers are including intelligent sensors, RFID chips (radio-frequency identification, like some of you might have embedded in your pet’s collar) and bluetooth senders to allow for easy tracking and identification – anywhere in the world.
The first inteligent baggage arrived in 2013. A crowdfunding campaign saw the birth of BlueSmart, luggage that can never get lost and weights itself – all from the comfort of your smartphone. It even has a battery and a USD port to charge your phone or your camera. Digitisation is slowly becoming a commodity so, as soon as there was one, other connected suitcases appeared. A good example is Pluggage: according to their website it “meets the ultra-connected traveller’s needs for independence, connectivity and safety when they travel”. It also locks and weights itself and can be tracked from an app.
The technology I am really looking forward to is one that will help me pack – and more importantly unpack and do the laundry once I’m back!! For now I will continue travelling with my ING Visa cards. The additional assitance and insurance (travel cancellation and interruption cover, airplane delay cover, baggage delay cover, ticket revaluation cover, insurange for loss or theft of baggage…) gives me peace of mind. You can check all the details here and compare the advantages versus your credit card with this table.