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Delayed, misdirected and just plain lost luggage is a sadly unavoidable part of travel, especially as airlines and airports struggled to manage the post-pandemic surge.
It’s one reason why Apple’s AirTags have quite literally taken off, with passengers eagerly slipping the high-tech tracker into checked bags.
And while we rate AirTags as the best way to keep an watchful eye on your luggage’s whereabouts, Air New Zealand’s popular Air NZ smartphone app is being upgraded to let passengers track the status of their bags from check-in to arrival.
After running a small pilot program for domestic customers in April, the Kiwi carrier is rolling out a broader test of the bag-tracking update.
It will initially be targeted to 25% of users travelling domestically and 5% of users making short-range international flights such as the pond-hop to Australia.
The feature allows passengers to view the last recorded status of their bags in the Air NZ app.
After completing their initial bag drop at the airport, its status can be checked via the baggage card on the app’s flight details screen.
Passengers can then monitor the progress of their luggage throughout their journey, including when it’s loaded onto the plane and when it arrives at their destination.
“Customers can track the journey of their bag and receive guidance on what to do if their bag has taken a detour,” explains Air New Zealand Chief Digital Officer Nikhil Ravishankar.
“Piloting the features gives us the opportunity to trial and test among a small group of passengers to troubleshoot any challenges, which will allow a more seamless rollout to all app users towards the middle of this year.”
A future update will also let travellers report mishandled baggage via the app.
“Baggage tracking puts information directly in the hands of our customers, streamlining processes, relieving pressure on our teams, and giving passengers peace of mind that their luggage is on the journey with them.”