Alaska Airlines becomes first U.S. airline to launch electronic bag tag program

Alaska is partnering with Dutch company BAGTAG on the electronic bag tag program.  The devices are equipped with durable screens that have been tested to withstand being run over a luggage cart, and are affixed to baggage just like any other bag tag, using an industrial strength plastic zip tie.

Today, we’re announcing that we will become the first U.S. airline to launch an electronic bag tag program later this year. 

Electronic bag tags will allow guests to skip the step of printing traditional bag tags at the airport. Travelers will be able to activate the devices from anywhere—their home, office or even car—up to 24-hours before their flight through our mobile app. 

“This technology allows our guests to tag their own bags in just seconds and makes the entire check-in process almost all off-airport,” said Charu Jain, senior vice president of merchandising and innovation at Alaska.”

Not only will our electronic bag tags allow our guests to quickly drop-off their luggage after they arrive at the airport, the devices will also give our employees the opportunity to spend more one-on-one time with guests who ask for assistance and reduce lines at our lobbies,” says Jain.  

The activation is done by simply  touching the phone used for check-in to the electronic bag tag, which has an antenna that powers and reads the information transmitted from the phone. The e-paper bag tag’s screen will then display the guest’s flight information. 

Alaska’s electronic bag tags will display the guest’s flight information. Download video here.

Our electronic bag tag program is expected to reduce the time spent dropping-off checked luggage by nearly 40%.  

In March, we launched a new self-bag drop system at San Jose International Airport, where guests can save up to a little more than four minutes. Our goal is to modernize travel at every major city we fly, from reimagining the lobby to testing innovative technology that streamlines the airport experience. 

Alaska Airlines is the first U.S. airline to pioneer this innovative electronic bag tag program here at SJC,” said San José Mayor Sam Liccardo. “This program will modernize the check-in process and provide a more sustainable option for travelers.”

Rollout of the electronic bag tag program will happen in several phases. The first phase will initially include 2,500 Alaska Airlines’ frequent fliers who will begin using the electronic bag tags in late 2022. Mileage Plan members will have the option to purchase the devices early next year. 

We are very proud to announce the first American carrier adopting our EBT solutions,” said BAGTAG Managing Director Jasper Quak. “Alaska Airlines’ relentless efforts to make their passenger journey a true 21st century experience makes us very confident in a successful rollout among their guests.”  

Download rending of Alaska Airlines’ electronic bag tag. Download video b-roll.