Middle East Airlines has launched the first ever integrated baggage management system in Lebanon. The new system, provided by aviation IT specialist SITA, will reduce the level of mishandled baggage and will facilitate security at Beirut Rafic Hariri International Airport.

The system will immediately benefit 80% of the airlines flying to Lebanon whose flights are handled by Middle East Airlines Ground Handling (MEAG) and will also be made available to other ground handlers at the airport.

SITA’s integrated baggage management system (BagManager and BagMessage) is a leading solution adopted by a majority of airlines and airports worldwide. It provides passenger-bag reconciliation which ensures that the right bag gets on the right plane and is assigned to the right passenger. By reducing the number of mishandled bags it is expected to deliver Middle East Airlines cost savings of up to 30%.

“Customer service is a priority to our airline and we aim to implement a system which not only improves service through better baggage management, but also provides cost savings and extra security,” said Adib Charif, CIO, Middle East Airlines. “SITA’s solution will enable MEA to meet ICAO’s security rules regarding baggage reconciliation prior to flight departure. On-time departures and security levels will both improve because the system makes certain that passengers and their baggage fly together on the same flight.”

Hani El Assaad, SITA Regional Vice-President, Middle East and Turkey added, “Any airline that implements SITA BagManager has the potential of reducing the number of mishandled bags, a welcome improvement for passengers. And of course, a necessary cost saving as each mishandled bag costs the airlines on average $90 and the worldwide cost to the industry is estimated at $2.9 billion.”

SITA BagManager is in use at more than 70 airports, and by hundreds of airlines, worldwide interfacing with check-in and baggage sorting systems to deliver end-to-end baggage management and reconciliation. It seamlessly integrates with WorldTracer, which is the single shared database of lost bags that is accessible by more than 440 customers globally, delivering worldwide round-the clock baggage tracing.