An Airport That Hasn’t Lost a Piece of Luggage in 30 Years? KIX Says It’s True.

JFK could never

Kansai International Airport

Kansai International Airport

By Lindsay Rogers

In the not so distant past, losing luggage whilst flying had become pretty par the course. Last year, Forbes Advisor analyzed data from the Transportation Security Administration to establish which airports were most likely to mishandle baggage. Consequently, John F. Kennedy International Airport was awarded a score of 100 out of 100, with the most property loss claims — 1.93 claims per 100,000 domestic passengers — of any major U.S. airport, though there were virtually no airports anywhere that felt totally unerring. Case in point: Heathrow, where in 2022, hundreds of bags were famously left to pile for weeks and passengers forced to wait days to be reunited with their belongings.

There was, however, one exception, and it’s an exception that actually predates all the post-Covid travel mayhem. In a press statement, Japan’s Kansai International Airport (KIX) alleged that — despite being Japan’s seventh busiest airport and averaging 20 to 30 million passengers per year — it has gone 30 years without losing a single piece of luggage. It’s no surprise, then, that KIX was also ranked the 18th best airport in the world overall, or that it was identified by Skytrax — an aviation ranking and rating site — as having the world’s best airport baggage delivery in 2024.

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That said, per CNN, KIX isn’t necessarily motivated by accolades, at least where lost luggage is concerned.

“We don’t feel like we have been doing something special,” KIX public relations officer Kenji Takanishi told the outlet. “We have been working as we normally do. We only do our work on a daily basis and we are recognized for it. We are certainly happy to receive the award. I think our staff, especially those working on the ground, feel more pleased.”

Of course, just because they aren’t losing luggage at KIX doesn’t mean luggage isn’t getting lost on the way to or from KIX. Airlines, after all, are just as culpable as airports, maybe even more so. During a three month span between 2022 and 2023, American Airlines enplaned more than 25 million bags and of those, more than 252,700 — or one in every 100 bags — were mishandled.

Still, 30 years of no lost luggage is no small feat. JFK, for its part, could stand to learn a thing or two.

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