Alaska Airlines Offers Customers Self Bag-Tagging Option at Sea-Tac Airport

Discussion in 'Alaska Airlines | Mileage Plan' started by dave1013, May 22, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. dave1013

    dave1013 Silver Member

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    Convenient alternative helps expedite travelers through check-in
    5/22/2012 5:31 a.m.

    SEATTLE - Alaska Airlines is debuting self-bag tagging for customers traveling out of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The process allows customers to print and attach their own luggage tags from a self-service kiosk in the airport lobby and then, in one step, show their identification and drop their bag off with an airline representative for security screening and loading onto an aircraft. Following a successful trial at Redmond/Bend Airport in Oregon last year, the airline intends to offer customers self-service bag-tagging options at more airports across its route system this summer.

    "Customers who have used the service are delighted to be able to help themselves by tagging their own bags, dropping them off and going on their way," said Jeff Butler, Alaska Airlines' vice president of customer service-airports. "We are committed to making Alaska the easiest airline to fly on and self-bag tagging is another step toward that goal."

    Alaska Airlines has received permission from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to implement self-bag tagging at other airports where Alaska and its sister carrier, Horizon Air, operate. Alaska is the first carrier to offer the service at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, its largest hub.

    Self-bag tagging is part of the airline's customer-focused initiative toward making travel easier. The airline launched a new mobile website last month that allows customers to access their boarding pass from any mobile device, and recently began offering expedited security screening for ‘known travelers' at its airports in Seattle and Portland in partnership with the TSA.

    Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air, subsidiaries of Alaska Air Group (NYSE: ALK), together serve more than 90 cities through an expansive network in Alaska, the Lower 48, Hawaii, Canada and Mexico. For reservations, visit www.alaskaair.com. For more news and information, visit the Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air Newsroom at www.alaskaair.com/newsroom.
     
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  2. yaychemistry

    yaychemistry Silver Member

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    So then if your bag gets lost (b/c your tag fell off) are they no longer liable for it?
     
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  3. jrp2

    jrp2 Gold Member

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    I hope that wouldn't be the case.
     
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  4. jrp2

    jrp2 Gold Member

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    Also, doing your own luggage seems similar to checking out your own groceries. It's okay to do until something non-standard needs to happen.
     
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  5. yaychemistry

    yaychemistry Silver Member

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    Ended up chatting with an agent about it (off duty). It appears that passengers still have to drop their bags off with an agent and have their IDs checked. The bag tags will get printed at the kiosk with their boarding passess... so the agent will be able to make sure that the passenger attached the bag tag correctly. Also, the self-printed tags will be colored differently so agents will be able to recognize which bags have been self-tagged.

    Assuming the majority of passengers can attach the bag tags correctly it should help streamline the process for the agent. If it saves 30 seconds per passenger it could really add up.
     
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  6. kw335
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    kw335 Silver Member

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    My only (minor) complaint with self-tagging is the absence of priority tags; on AA anyways. During my most recent trip from AUS, I ended up having to queue up on the Priority AAccess line to get it priority-tagged, which defeats the whole purpose of helping to expedite the check-in process.

    Sorry, I didn't mean to hijack the thread with AA complaints. :D
     
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  7. Golfingboy
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    Golfingboy Gold Member

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    We all know very well that is not the primary goal... It is $$$ the more they can empower the customers the less agents they will need.

    Trying to get an agent to help customers at the airport when the weather is bad or there are a few cancellations is already bad enough and this is not going to help. I highly doubt it will save that much time for the agents since they will still have to check our IDs, verify our tags and make sure it is done properly, check the weights, ensure the bags have been paid for and if not collect the fees, etc.

    When a customer checks in through the kiosk, the machine will automatically print out the tags, so all the agent has to do is walk up and rip the tags from the machine and tag the bags while checking the IDs and the weight simultaneously.

    AS is just trying to be creative on how they can shave off human resources and labor costs.
     
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  8. yaychemistry

    yaychemistry Silver Member

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    I suppose I was thinking of this from the point of view of making lines shorter - but your point is probably more correct in that it will mean fewer agents... :(
     
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