Qantas' ambitious Next Generation Check-in system, including the smartchipped Q Cards and Q Bag Tags, has picked up a global award for innovation in airline technology.
The Airline Strategy Awards 2011, presented today in London, said that while Qantas is not the first airline to embrace radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology, its "innovative Q Bag Tag and faster, smarter check-in have developed its scope beyond any previous use".
"RFID has been around a long time, but not much has happened" the ASA11 judging panel noted. "(Next Generation Check-in) shows real creativity.”
"Initial RFID baggage tracking solutions have relied on single-use disposable tags and only focused on improving baggage sorting after check-in. Next-Generation Check-in also addresses the front end of the process with the aim of simplifying a passenger’s complete journey through an airport while improving the efficiency and accuracy of baggage (sorting)."
The Airline Strategy Awards 2011 also gonged Air New Zealand as winner in the marketing category, while Emirates president Tim Clark won the Airline Business Award for steering "Emirates on its trailblazing expansion over the last decade" and as "architect of its strategy to develop Dubai into the world’s premier international mega-hub."
"Emirates is now firmly established as the biggest threat to the legacy carriers, the one that most rivals lie awake worrying about" observed Max Kingsley-Jones, editor of Airline Strategy Awards organiser Airline Business magazine.