A saving of $36m for airlines using Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport Rome, Italy’s largest airport and the main hub for Alitalia, was today announced by SITA, the IT company which provides Aeroporti di Roma with advanced baggage technology.
These savings are the result of major improvements to baggage processing introduced by the airport and its partner airlines since 2010, when IATA’s baggage improvement program and SITA’s technology were introduced. Over the past two years, mishandling rates for airlines using the airport have been reduced by 70% with 360,000 fewer bags mishandled at the airport during 2011 compared with 2009. This has delivered estimated savings to the airlines of $36m.
The new system includes SITA BagManager and the innovative SITA BagConnect. Together these applications have delivered major improvements; tracking the movement of baggage from check-in, through arrivals and transfers to flight departure, and providing baggage handlers with real-time information on baggage status helping them resolve any issues.
Fiumicino is the first airport in the world to benefit from SITA BagConnect, which addresses one of the major challenges of transfer baggage: the arrival of a transfer bag without a baggage information message (BIM). It is this message that automated baggage handling systems need to process and sort bags correctly, without it bags require manual encoding and can miss connections or end up in dump chutes awaiting manual intervention. The transfer of bags between flights is the single greatest cause of delayed luggage, accounting for 53% during 2011. SITA BagConnect ensures that the transfer airport receives all the necessary information automatically in its systems to enable bags to make connections more smoothly.
Elia Pistola, EVP airport management, Aeroporti di Roma, said, "Our decision to use SITA’s BagManager and the ground-breaking BagConnect supports our commitment to improve service quality for our passengers. By tracking every bag throughout the airport we are reducing our mishandling rate at Fiumicino. This has been a great success, SITA has delivered excellent results in terms of improved processes which have increased passenger satisfaction and provided significant cost savings."
Eraldo Baluci, SITA regional vice president for Southern Europe, said, "This multi-million dollar investment by Aeroporti di Roma is delivering significant improvement in handling of baggage to the airlines using Fiumicino, as well as providing immediate benefits to its passengers. The number of mishandled bags has been reduced from 37 per thousand passengers in 2009 to 11 per thousand in 2011. At an average industry cost of $100 per mishandled bag, we estimate that this has delivered savings in the region of $36m since 2009."
The great majority of mishandled bags worldwide are reunited with their owners in less than 48 hours and only a small fraction, less than 1%, fails to show up at all. But no one wants a mishandled bag and SITA’s sophisticated baggage systems are designed to address this problem.
SITA BagManager is the only system which offers a bi-directional interface to WorldTracer, which is the single shared database of mishandled bags that is accessible by over 440 customers globally, delivering worldwide round-the-clock baggage tracing. If bags are delayed or mishandled as they pass through Fiumicino, the reflighting module in BagManager, along with the interface to WorldTracer, ensure that delayed bags can be quickly and efficiently forwarded on to the passenger on a later flight.