According to the Travel Industry Association of America's (TIA) Annual Travel Forecast released in May 2005, "overall travel expenditures for both U.S. residents and international visitors surpassed the $600 billion mark for the first time in 2004. The 2005 forecast is a healthy 5.6 percent increase, pushing the total travel expenditures number to $633.5 billion" as illustrated below.

The Travel Industry Association of America's (TIA) Annual Travel Forecast (May 2005)

Despite concerns about terrorism, poor customer service and challenging times for many organizations in this industry, travel has rebounded and the surge is surpassing all expectations. While some factors are out of the control of travel players, enhancing customer service — especially with lost baggage — is possible and improved with solutions like RFID from Intellareturn.

The ReturnMe® Baggage Tagging Solution
According to a recent study by SITA Inc., a Geneva-based company, the airline industry spends $1.6 billion a year on mishandled baggage. They attribute this to two main factors — growing passenger numbers and tighter security. The company is promoting the use of RFID-based luggage tags to reduce the number of misdirected bags.

British Airways to Support RFID Baggage TaggingEnter Intellareturn.

Intellareturn offers travel customers the RadioTag(sm) technology and service platform embedded in a luggage ID tag. Through our licensing arrangements, Intellareturn provides this identification opportunity to hotel, credit card and travel organization partners — charging the customer directly for permanent RFID-embedded baggage tags that they can attach to their luggage to provide lost & found tracking and security protection.

Participating airlines can pass us scan details (commonly known as BPM data) from their handling system whenever the bag is within their operations, as Intellareturn creates messages or alerts for the passenger when their luggage is lost or found. Intellareturn can also provide a handheld RadioTag RFID reader in select customer service baggage locations, hotels, airport and TSA offices. Many airports have started to implement scan points within their operations (especially international terminals where the turn times are high and baggage matching is critical).

IEEE P1902 RuBee Protocol RFID Transponders
Our patented RF travel tag solutions are based on frangible tag frequencies. They can operate at a low frequency (below 128 KHz) with active tags that function within the evolving IEEE P1902 protocol, also known as "RuBee" tags. RubBee is managed by low-cost ethernet-enabled routers that can be discovered and viewed over the Internet—including popular search engines like Google. Intellareturn believes the IEEE P1902 protocol represents an attractive market solution for RF identification with luggage and travel bags to prevent loss by airline package delivery services equipped to read RF shipments and associate them with travel itineraries, history and related ownership and demographic data points.

Not Just Baggage and Airlines
American Express and other travel industry partners (i.e. hotel chains, theme parks, etc) can also benefit applying the Intellareturn solutions to carry-on items and electronic accessories left behind at airports or travel destinations. In fact, many leading point-of-sale (POS) and reader manufacturers are integrating RFID technology into their equipment, allowing them to benefit from AmEx's ExpressPay program and other contactless solutions like those from Intellareturn.

Contact us for information on integrating these customer travel solutions in your organization's plans to gain intelligence at the point of return with Intellareturn.