Airports mull luggage overhaul

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The Independent Online

The world's biggest airports are looking at taking passenger luggage from front door to destination in a move that could free-up valuable retail space, according to industry sources.

René Mueller, the vice-president and general manager at the airports arm of Fortune 100 conglomerate Honeywell, said: "Several large airports are looking into finding totally new ways to deal with luggage flow ... essentially door-to-door luggage services."

An airport-sector source added that this would remove the long queues that build up as people drop off their bags, as well as many of the space-consuming processing systems that are required to sort the luggage.

Advanced barcode and tagging technologies would mean that luggage would be effectively processed. The cost of picking up the luggage would be offset by the money raised from the greater number of stores that could be accommodated within the airports.

Amsterdam's Schiphol airport recently implemented a 24-hour self-service bag-drop, which can see luggage processed in just half a minute.