The global travel and tourism industry is envisioned to witness a year-on-year (Y-O-Y) growth rate of 3.9% and reach USD 11,382 Billion (10.6% of GDP) by 2025.
As the travel landscape continues to evolve, people want to be able to travel more, be better connected, and be offered a greater variety of personalized services and destinations to choose from.
While there are several modes of traveling to choose from, such as by road, rail, sea etc., air travel is the most preferred mode of travel and transportation, owing to several factors such as safety, time saving, convenience etc.
One of the most crucial factors in air travel is baggage restrictions that apply to both checked-in and carry-on baggage. It is imperative that customers are aware of these to avoid any baggage-related snags. Whether it is carry-on luggage or checked-in baggage, abiding by airline baggage rules and regulations goes a long way in ensuring a smooth flight journey.
Even frequent flyers are sometimes troubled by baggage woes, regardless of the number of miles they have flown. Globally, 99.5% of all baggage travels with the passenger as planned and the vast majority of bags that are mishandled are returned to the passenger within 48 hours. This does not detract from the fact that arriving without your baggage is a significant inconvenience.
Many baggage mishandlings occur at the transfer point due to punctuality issues, and these are often caused by air traffic control congestion. Sometimes it is simply not possible to move the bags between flights in the time available.
According to IATA reports, baggage mishandling however has reduced from 18.88 bags mishandled per 1000 passengers in 2007 to 3.5 in 2020.
Essential airline baggage tips for air travelers to follow
By using these simple but effective airline baggage tips, travelers can say goodbye to their baggage-related concerns.
Some associated Baggage concerns – Damaged, Delayed or Lost Baggage
While the vast majority of airline passengers’ checked bags arrive at their destination on time and in the condition received, a passenger’s bag may occasionally be damaged, delayed, or lost in transit. Under DOT (Department of Transportation)regulations (for domestic travel) and international treaties (for international travel), airlines are required to compensate passengers if their bags are damaged, delayed, or lost.
According to a recent study by Radical Storage, a company that offers luggage storage, in 2021, US airlines mishandled over 1.9 million luggage items. American Airlines had the most significant number of items of baggage mishandled.
Airlines are responsible for repairing or reimbursing a passenger for damaged baggage and/or its contents when the damage occurs while the bag is under the airline’s control during transportation (subject to maximum limits on liabilities). However, the airlines are not responsible for pre-existing damage to the bag or if the damage was caused by improper packing.
When the damage to the bag cannot be repaired, airlines will negotiate a compensation amount based on the value of the bag and its depreciation.
When a checked bag does not arrive at its destination, airlines are responsible for locating the bag. Airlines have tracking systems in place to try to identify the bag’s location. Passengers should file a baggage claim with their airline as soon as possible.
Airlines are required to compensate passengers for reasonable, verifiable, and actual incidental expenses that they may incur while their bags are delayed - subject to the maximum liability limits.
Once an airline determines that a passenger’s bag is lost, the airline is responsible for compensating the passenger for the bags’ contents - subject to depreciation and maximum liability limits and is also required to refund any fees paid by the passenger to the airline to transport the bag that was lost. Airlines may require receipts or other proof for valuable items that were in the lost bags.
All of the above processes can be outsourced by an airline to business process services companies that handle both voice and back-office operations while the airline itself focuses on its core functions. The various stages of tracking the bag status, claim validations, and authorizations can be efficiently managed by imparting the right training and providing access to the right tools.
Journey into the future and the role Wipro can play in delivering efficient airline baggage support services...
The customer baggage journey needs a vision for the future to ensure convenient and hassle-free handling and tracking of baggage, so that most bags would proceed smoothly to retrieval on flight arrival. While this would be an ideal situation, it is certainly recommended to be prepared to deal with damaged, delayed, or lost luggage if faced with such a scenario. Baggage issues top the list of passenger complaints, and therefore, a hassle-free travel experience is an important determining factor in customer loyalty and repeat business.
Over the years, Wipro has delivered substantial business benefits to our airline customers that include a large APAC airline, a large US Airlines (Star Alliance), and a leading US Airlines of the SkyTeam. With an unwavering commitment to supporting client businesses, Wipro’s expert aviation team provides reliable solutions to manage several areas of airline front and back-office operations, including baggage support. Wipro, as the partner of choice, offers to strengthen revenue assurance and integrity for airlines and provides operational support functions, ensuring best-in-class customer experience.
Practice Manager – Consumer Business Unit, Digital Operations & Platforms – iCORE, Wipro Limited
Shaila has over 17 years of experience in the BPO industry, handling service delivery and operations for major airlines. Over the last two years, she has worked extensively in travel and hospitality pre-sales efforts and GTM activities for pipeline creation.