The 10th annual SITA Baggage Report, also found the mishandling rate dropped more than 21% compared to 2012, with 6.96 bags per thousand passengers.
SITA says it is half the rate reported 10 years ago, and comes despite a 65.6% increase in passenger numbers over the same time period.
From 2012 to 2013, the rate of mishandled bags dropped 21.2%, and the total annual cost to the industry fell 19.9%.
Today, the annual cost of mishandled bags is 50% less than in 2007, when the number peaked at 18.88 bags per thousand passengers.
The industry has achieved this improvement even as passenger numbers rose more than 5% in 2013, to top three billion passengers globally, according to SITA.
Francesco Violante, CEO, SITA, explains: “The industry has joined together to tackle the problem of mishandled bags, and we have seen great results. There is still more work to do, but 2013 was the best year ever, showing the benefits of this collaboration.
“As the community provider to the air transport industry, SITA continues to invest in innovative technologies to drive the mishandling rate still lower.
“This includes self-service solutions for passengers such as self-service bag-drops and our BagJourney application programming interface, which provides end-to-end baggage tracking for integration into airline and airport systems, such as smartphone and tablet apps.”
In 2013, passengers reported 21.8 million mishandled bags. More than 81% of these were delayed bags, and baggage transfers between flights as the leading cause.
SITA says that although transfer bags remain a challenge for the industry, performance in this area continues to improve.
In 2013, transfer bags accounted for 45% of delayed bags, which is 23.2% lower than 2012.
SITA concludes that improvement in transfer performance in recent years has been helped by greater messaging reliability, which enables bags with short connection times to be identified before they arrive at the airport.
And better segregation of these ‘hot bags’ in the aircraft and smart mobile devices, such as tablets for key operational staff, have also played an important role.
Sourced by Airport World