When was the last time an airline lost your luggage? You were left fuming at the airport, perhaps even in Vienna or Tokyo, struggling to explain yourself in a foreign language. Suffering from jet lag, the experience was so frustrating that you vowed never to check your luggage again.
One area where RFID is making inroads is airplane baggage handling. Radio Frequency IDentification – RFID is an extremely powerful enabling technology now being used in airports and aircraft manufacturing. It’s serving to improve security against criminal attack, safety against general hazards, efficiency, error prevention, data capture and to remove tedious tasks. Managers in the air industry and their suppliers are in danger of being left behind if they are oblivious of the successes and new possibilities of using RFID to improve the air industry.
The potential amount that RFID baggage tagging can save amounts to $760 million a year. In some cases the saving has been even higher – in the Hong Kong airport the average cost of handling bags has gone from $7 per bag to $4 and is dropping further every year. Paybacks from RFID in the air industry are ranging in the 1-2 year range but newer airports coming on line are as low as 6 months. RFID has been shown as a huge driver of efficiency and cost savings throughout the industry.