Lufthansa Group airlines Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines and Swiss, have introduced a reusable electronic bag tag that can be used in place of conventional luggage labels.
The 5.6 x 2.7 x 0.4 inch (143 x 68 x 11mm) tags are fixed to luggage using a plate and screws – the manufacturer, BAGTAG, says they can be fitted on any piece of luggage. A high-resolution e-paper display on the front of the devices present data in a similar visual format to a conventional paper tag. The front of the tag is protected is shielded by an impact absorbing lens, and a robust enclosure protects the device from adverse weather. They also include an RFID chip that is compliant with automated airport sorting systems, and are powered by a 3v coin battery said to last 2,500 flights.
Passengers check in using the airlines’ Android or IOS App, and after receiving an electronic boarding pass on their mobile devices can download baggage routing and priority information to their tag using a Bluetooth low-energy connection. Data sent to the device is encrypted to ensure only the traveller can make changes.
The airlines claims the devices shorten the time spent queuing and processing passengers at check in desks and self-service kiosks, and will reduce the environmental impact of printing 4bn paper labels globally every year. They are also more resilient and less likely to become detached from the bag to which they are fixed. It is suggested that the electronic tags are less susceptible to damage and more likely to remain machine-readable throughout a journey, leading to improved bag routing and less likelihood of mishandling or loss.
Photo: Electronic luggage labels manufactured by BAGTAG are now supported by Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines and Swiss. (BAGTAG)