The APEX Heart Awards are the first award in the industry to recognize everyday airline heroes who fly under the radar. With airlines and companies around the globe who improve passengers’ air travel experience at every step of the journey, APEX is proud to reward individuals on airline teams who go above and beyond the call of duty to elevate the passenger experience.

Contact editor@apex.aero to nominate someone for an APEX Heart Award!

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge Legend

Silver Heart Awards

Exemplary everyday actions, above-and-beyond courtesies and outstanding services that turn a mundane flight experience into one that passengers will never forget.

APEX Heart Award Gold Badge Legend

Gold Heart Awards

Gestures that require significant change in routine, powerful actions that evoke a strong emotional response from the general public and outright heroics that keep passengers safe.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Air New Zealand

Crew and Social Media Team

When the crew on an Air New Zealand flight discovered a drawing of a couple on their wedding day that was accidentally left behind, they were determined to find its owners. The airline’s social media team shared it on their social channels and, when the owners were identified, a customer service agent named Olivia delivered it to them at their home.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Alaska Airlines

Crew

The crew on an Alaska Airlines flight from Boston to Portland made an announcement to see if any guests on board knew American Sign Language (ASL) and would be willing to help establish a better means of communication with a passenger named Tim Cook, who is deaf and blind. Clara Daly, a 15-year-old from LA, helped Tim by signing into his hand. If passengers could receive APEX Heart Awards, Clara would surely be awarded with a gold one!

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Alaska Airlines
Jeff, Jamie, Nikki, Jen

Crew

A passenger was nervous about flying with her wedding dress, but thanks to the crew on her Alaska Airlines flight, it was a seamless process. The crew also left her a note, saying “We wish you nothing but the best on your wedding day, and all the happiness and well-being on your future endeavors!”

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Southwest Airlines
Mike

Social Care Team Member

Xavier University alumnus Renée Stoeckle was planning to use the in-flight Wi-Fi to watch her alma matter’s March Madness game against Florida State. When the connection wasn’t powerful enough to live stream the game, she contacted the airline on Twitter and suggested they live tweet the game for her. Mike from the Social Care Team granted her wish, leaving Stoeckle singing the airline’s praises despite her disappointment over the Wi-Fi connection.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
United Airlines
Gate agent & Captain Jim Mooney

Brit Morin, founder and CEO of Brit & Co, was devastated when she discovered she had lost her wedding and engagement rings en route to Jackson Hole from New York. After filling out a lost and found claim online, a United representative replied that they had found both rings on the jet bridge. Captain Jim Mooney delivered them to their owner, along with a handwritten note.

APEX Heart Award Gold Badge
American Airlines
Denice Miracle

Customer Service Agent

When Denice Miracle, a customer service agent for American Airlines at Sacramento International Airport, encountered two young girls with one-way first-class tickets, traveling without parents or identification, she called the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department Airport Bureau. Authorities discovered that a man the girls met on Instagram had bought the tickets, luring them with a promise of payment in return for performing in music videos. It’s believed that the girls narrowly avoided becoming victims of child trafficking, thanks to Miracle.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Delta
Ann

Customer Service Representative

When an infant was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, Ann, a customer service representative for Delta, took it upon herself to rearrange the family’s flight at no extra charge, and to an airport which was closer to home for the family.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Swiss International Air Lines
Captain

A Swiss International Air Lines captain decided to show passengers on a flight from Barcelona to Zurich “the best of Switzerland.” After obtaining permission from air traffic control, the captain circled the Alps, pointing out the Matterhorn, Zermatt, Aletsch Glacier, Eiger and Jungfrau.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
American Airlines
Pilot, Crew

After boarding an American Airlines flight at Charlotte Douglas International Airport, eight-year-old Ayla Johnson realized she had left her teddy bear, Tito, at the gate. The doors to the aircraft were already closed but one of the flight attendants was able to contact a gate agent who tossed Tito through the pilot’s window.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Jet Airways
Crew

As Ajay Awtaney boarded a Jet Airways flight with his wife, Shipra Baranwal, on their anniversary, little did they know they were about to encounter a pleasant surprise. When the crew realized it was their anniversary, they presented the couple with a handwritten card and two pieces of cake.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Southwest Airlines
Cabin Crew

Southwest Airlines helped a father plan a special 18th birthday for his daughter, who has cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Since she loves taking off and landing, the day included eight stops; Southwest crew sang “Happy Birthday” and encouraged other passengers to join in the celebrations with high-fives, cards and gifts.

APEX Heart Award Silver Badge
Delta Air Lines
Reservation Sales & Customer Care Team

When thunderstorms in the Atlanta area resulted in delays, diversions and cancellations at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport and other southeastern United States airports, Delta surprised travelers with pizza deliveries straight to the gate and on planes where they were stranded.