Losing Your Bag Is Never Fun: One ‘Pinjer’s Story

Wendy Werblin, Director of Industry Solutions

March 21, 2019

Air travel: it can be exciting! But, it can also be super stressful. Take my recent experience that included stops in several cities.

I experienced several flight delays. For one leg of this trip, I had an interline (from one airline to another) connection, a checked bag, and a delayed flight that left me only about 20 minutes to sprint from one end of the airport to the other.

I made my connection (and got a short workout in the process) – but when I landed in Seattle several hours later, I discovered that my bag had not. I got in a line with about 30 other people who also couldn‘t locate their bags, thankful that at least I was in my home city where I had a spare toothbrush. Then, I thought, what if this had been the start of my trip, or I had been in a country where I didn’t know the language, or I was the young parent in front of me with the overtired kids?

When I approached the front of the line, an airline agent took my bag tag receipt and scanned the barcode, which was not recognized by his bag tracking system. I explained that my bag was coming to his airline from another – this was a slightly different and more manual process since those systems didn’t readily talk to each other. I could tell the agent was having a long night. I asked him if this was a typical number of misplaced bags – the line was getting longer – and he said it was. My estimate was that there were at least 30 people in line consistently. I remarked that this airline needed to invest in RAIN RFID tracking, he looked up and remarked: “we sure do!

A solution to baggage anxiety

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has developed Resolution 753: a new way to approach baggage handling. IATA found that mishandled baggage cost the airline industry 2.3B USD in 2017 and that’s not including the cost of frustrated passengers. Resolution 753 seeks to reduce the number of mishandled bags through tracking each bag at points throughout the baggage handling process. But, how does the air transport industry meet these new standards? The Impinj platform is here to help.

Baggage tracking with Impinj

The Impinj platform uses RAIN RFID to automate baggage tracking throughout airports and airlines delivering accurate, real-time data about baggage from check-in to pick-up.  RAIN RFID baggage tracking helps airlines and airports optimize baggage handling operations, improve passenger experience and reduce bag mishandling costs. Air Transport professionals are already adopting RAIN RFID in their baggage tracking to do this. Newark Airport deployed a solution that leveraged Impinj’s RAIN RFID readers to enhance bag tracking in their security processes, and the results were undeniable. By automating baggage tracking as it moved through various security checkpoints, Newark Airport:

    • Improved overall traveler experience through faster baggage processing
    • Increased the speed and accuracy in their security screening checkpoints
    • Helped TSA agents, now equipped  with the data collected from scanned bags, improve operations

The future of bag tracking

Are you interested in learning more about how RAIN RFID is rocketing the air transport industry into the future?  I will be at the RAIN Alliance Pavilion showcasing the Impinj platform at Passenger Terminal Expo in a couple of weeks – stop by to learn more about how RAIN RFID can help your airline or airport improve one of the most stressful parts of traveling for passengers: checking a bag.

Join Impinj at the Passenger Terminal Expo, Booth 6110 at the London ExCel center on March 26-28, 2019.

Come see for yourself!


Impinj (NASDAQ: PI) wirelessly connects billions of everyday items such as apparel, medical supplies, and automobile parts to consumer and business applications such as inventory management, patient safety, and asset tracking. The Impinj platform uses RAIN RFID to deliver timely information about these items to the digital world, thereby enabling the Internet of Things.

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