Lufthansa Partners with SITA to Automate Mishandled Baggage Reflight

Under a new partnership with SITA, Lufthansa aims to digitally automate its baggage reflight operations to reduce the costs and inconveniences associated with mishandled baggage.

Currently, mishandled baggage between flight connections costs the industry billions of dollars each year. In 2022 alone, 2.2 billion was attributed to mishandled baggage, with over 4 million bags being incorrectly handled during transfer.

Automate Baggage Reflight
Automating bag reflight operations could reduce mishandled bag costs and improve the passenger experience

As passenger numbers continue to grow post-pandemic, it is now of particular importance to address the issues caused by staff shortages and baggage mishandling so that airlines can deliver an improved travel experience.

With this latest partnership, Lufthansa plans to leverage SITA’s WorldTracer Auto Reflight solution, which reflights mishandled bags digitally, without human intervention.

Auto Reflight automatically suggests and assigns suitable flight routing for rush bags using the original bag tag. It then informs the baggage system of the bag’s new route.

This system saves time and paper consumption by eradicating the need to issue additional tags.

The solution also proactively notifies passengers of any delays with their luggage and provides them with the necessary delivery details so that they can bypass the baggage hall.

Viktoria Rudo, Senior Manager, Lufthansa Group, said:

“At Lufthansa, we have always looked at ways to optimise baggage management processes and improve the passenger journey. We see great potential in the automation of today’s mainly manual reflighting processes. This is why we have decided to work with SITA to explore possibilities to digitalize the process.

“Based on the first results of our Proof of Concept, we believe to be able to automatically reflight as much as 70% of Lufthansa´s mishandled bags at Munich Airport. Interpolating this to our global network, we expect more up-to-date information and further improvements in the mishandled baggage processes for Lufthansa and high potential for other SITA airline customers by digitalising what was previously a totally manual process.”

SITA estimates that widespread automation of reflighting baggage could save the industry 30 million USD a year in costs associated with mishandled baggage.

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