American Airlines just secretly added free live baggage tracking

September 30, 2015, 2:57 PM UTC
American Airlines Files For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy
CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 29: An American Airlines passenger waits for her luggage at O'Hare Airport on November 29, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. AMR, the parent company of American and American Eagle Airlines, today filed for bankruptcy protection. The company's stock plunged about 80 percent on the news. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Photograph by Scott Olson — Getty Images

American Airlines (AAL) has added a tracking system to its website that allows customers to see exactly where their bags are at all times from the moment they deposit them at the check-in counter to the time they arrive at baggage claim, the Chicago Tribune reports.

You’ll no longer have to hear the infuriating airport staffer response of, “Sorry, I can’t help you,” in the case that you can’t spot your luggage on the carousel. “It’s something our customers have been asking for a really long time, and we’re excited to make this available to them,” American Airlines spokesperson Laura Nedbal told the Tribune.

You can find the baggage tracker at in the “Track Your Bags” section. Just enter your last name and either your record locator, which you can find on your boarding pass, or your bag tag number, which is on your baggage claim ticket. Bags are scanned at six checkpoints between check-in and baggage claim.

The tracker is also available on the mobile website, but has not yet been added to the American Airlines app. AAdvantage frequent-flier members are also able to find their baggage information on their online profiles.

The service is completely free and is also being offered by Delta Air Lines (DAL) and U.S. Airways.

The feature was actually launched on Aug. 21, but American wanted its employees to acclimate to the new scanning procedures before announcing it to the public. As Nadbal said, “We wanted to make sure everything was ready to go before we started communicating about it.”

As of July, American lost four bags for every 1,000 travelers, ranking it 10th out of 13 airlines according to a report by the U.S. Department of Transportation.