Tech of the Week: never lose a bag again

Tech of the Week: never lose a bag again
It’s the worst feeling for any traveller - you’re the last person standing next to a carousel, watching the same two bags go around and around, hoping yours joins them before you charge to lost luggage to angrily admit defeat.

Well, there’s no need to suffer that futility again. Today, Serko (not to be confused with Serco) have announced their new bag tracking feature, Bag Tracker, which gives travellers the ability to keep track of all their checked luggage through the Serko Mobile platform. (A similar product has been offered by Eviate in partnership with Air France KLM.)

“With Bag Tracker, Serko Mobile users no longer have to wonder whether their bags have made it onto the plane, or fight queues at the luggage carousel as their Serko Mobile app will now tell them exactly how far away their bags are,” says Serko CEO Darrin Grafton.

With Bag Tracker, your bags are tracked by small plastic beacons (made by Estimote) that you pair with your phone over Bluetooth. It won’t stop the airlines sending your suitcase to London, but if it misses your connecting flight or has just been dropped on the runway (it happens), you can easily find out how long it’ll take to join you. Or, if you just want to know if you have time to get a coffee and check your email before heading to luggage collection, you can do that too.

Bag Tracker has two modes: ‘Find My Bag’ which tells you how far away your bags are and if they’re in range (up to 70 meters); and ‘Carousel Mode’ which alerts you when your bag comes into range on the carousel so you don’t have to unnecessarily fight your way to the front only to stare are all the other black Samsonites revolving past you.

The beacons can last up to a year without charging and will be available for purchase online. You can track up to three beacons per phone.

Bag Tracker will be available later this month for iOS only. Serko is working on an Android version. Pricing is yet to be announced.