NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Delta announced changes to its checked bag system last week, making it the first airline to enable customers to follow their luggage online, from its arrival at the boarding gate to its pick-up at baggage claim.

Using the airline’s improved online tracking system, consumers will also be able to receive notifications via text or email should their bag fail to travel with them and file a delayed baggage claim electronically at, should something go awry.  

To make the system more accessible, Delta plans to add self-service kiosks in 18 of its busiest airports by the end of this year. The kiosks will allow passengers to view a bag’s status, verify baggage claim carousels and file a delayed bag claim.

And speaking of delays, the airline will now reimburse passengers for any bags delayed beyond 12 hours with $25 for one bag or $50 for two or more bags.

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The changes to Delta’s checked bag system have rolled out slowly the past few weeks and were formally announced in a company blog post Thursday; you can read more on  According to the airline, they were made “in a continual effort to improve this system and make traveling better for you.”

This benevolence, however, is a bit of a misnomer since some of the changes will soon be required by law anyway. Last Wednesday, the Department of Transportation released new airline regulations that require airlines to pay consumers a fee for lost luggage. The new rules also require airlines to disclose hidden fees and will go in effect Aug. 23.

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