While this is something that has been trialed for a while, this week American is officially rolling out customer baggage notifications, also known as CBN. With these new notifications, you’ll be informed through American’s app if your bags won’t be arriving as scheduled, and you’ll be able to use the app to take the next step towards getting a resolution.
American says that customers will receive three types of alerts through CBN:
- Early Baggage Arrival – This message alerts customers that their bag arrived before them and directs them to pick up their bag at the Baggage Service Office (BSO).
- Late Baggage Arrival – Go to the Baggage Service Office. This message directs customers, for example those with an international segment in their reservation, to see an agent at the BSO.
- Late Baggage Arrival – Mobile Baggage Order (MBO). This message advises customers to fill out a Mobile Baggage Order, or MBO, on their mobile device. The automated MBO asks for the customer’s delivery details and a bag description to help expedite reuniting the customer with their items. By using the MBO, customers no longer need to stop at the BSO to file a claim.
So if your bags are delayed you’ll be informed right away…
…and you’ll be given the option to schedule delivery for the bags.
You’ll also be informed if your bags arrived on an earlier flight, and you’ll be able to see exactly what flights they were on, when they arrived, etc.
To receive alerts, customers can use the American Airlines app, sign up for an AAdvantage account, or provide contact information during booking or check-in.
Here’s a video American made about this new feature:
This is a positive development, though it’s very much not an innovation on the part of American. IATA is requiring all airlines to improve their technology when it comes to baggage tracking, which needs to be in place by June 2018. Furthermore, this is something that Delta has been offering for years.
There’s no doubt this will make a material improvement for those with delayed or lost bags, not only in terms of sharing lost or delayed baggage information proactively, but also in terms getting started on the recovery process, rather than having to go to the lost baggage department.
Unfortunately American still has a long way to go when it comes to improving the experience of checked bags. While I don’t check bags often, for the times I have with American, I’ve waited absurdly long periods. Meanwhile Alaska and Delta offer a 20 minute baggage guarantee, which is great. If only American would match that as well…