As I wrote in yesterday’s tip, one way to avoid the long Starbucks airport line is to download their app. Here’s that story. Well, airline and airport executives are starting to realize that the way to keep customers happy and get high customer satisfaction scores is to not subject them to long and slow lines.
Since testing this service at their Newark hub since August, United is now expanding their Bag Drop Shortcut service. The free service is live now in Chicago, New York/Newark, Washington D.C., Houston, Denver, Los Angeles and San Francisco, with plans to expand to dozens more airports this year.
These airports now have special areas available for customers to weigh their bag, scan a boarding pass and go.
Here’s how United Airlines’ Bag Drop Shortcut works:
- Check-in on the United app and select the number of bags
- Find the bag drop shortcut location at the airport with detailed instructions available right in the app
- At the bag drop shortcut location, customers place their bag on the scale and scan their boarding pass at the kiosk
- The United team will check the customer’s ID, apply the bag tag and you’re on your way.
According to United, in less than six months, the bag drop shortcut at Newark moved from a proof-of-concept to a fully functional service in all seven of United’s hubs. By creating a dedicated area for those who only need to drop their bags, United is able to reduce wait times for all customers, which has significantly increased the airline’s customer satisfaction scores.
Hopefully, more airlines will follow United’s lead.
Awesome! One reason they could possibly implement it so quickly was that they were already doing this in Iceland’s airport at least five years ago. The self-bag drop machine were terrifying in that one worried if a bag was overweight that humiliating red light on a pole would flash to a wailing siren, but I never saw that happen. The bags were whisked out of there so fast from the scale on the conveyor belt without warning, that most of the time was standing there in shock watching one’s bag zip away!
Great idea to lessen lines!