December 1, 2021
APEX World Class Announced at APEX EXPO

A New Class of Air Travel for a New World

Long Beach, CA. USA (30 November 2021) – The APEX (Airline Passenger Experience ‎Association), the largest international airline association dedicated to advancing the passenger ‎experience, today announced the launch of APEX WORLD CLASS, the new premier category ‎of air travel. ‎

Developed in partnership with Yates and Partners, the world’s leading aviation guest experience ‎consultancy, the inaugural honors and accreditations were launched during APEX EXPO, the ‎airline industry’s leading leadership event and marketplace.‎

APEX WORLD CLASS recognizes airlines for their achievements on the key metrics that matter ‎to travelers today. In the last 20 months travelers, especially airline customers, have undergone ‎a seismic value shift. There are new dimensions to travel that have become the priority of airline ‎guests, and new metrics by which to measure the air travel experience. The aviation industry ‎has changed and adapted to challenging conditions, and the way we assess and measure the ‎industry needs to change with it.‎

‎“APEX is helping aviation transform and better serve its customers and our society,” said APEX ‎CEO, Dr. Joe Leader. “This WORLD CLASS collaboration with Yates and Partners has ‎accelerated the development of diagnostic and actionable audit processes that materialize in ‎important changes.”‎
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Yates chair, Keith Yates, described WORLD CLASS as “every airline’s North Star.”‎

‎“This is every CEO’s must-achieve award. It’s the brand recognition that says, ‘this airline knows ‎what matters to today’s airline customer,’ and they have demonstrated they can consistently ‎deliver it,” said Yates. “WORLD CLASS audits look at the vital measures by which an airline is ‎judged. Safety has always been the important dimension of aviation but wellbeing, keeping me ‎safe, goes well beyond seamless service. It’s at the forefront of every guest’s mind. The air ‎travelers of the 21st century think beyond themselves and their own immediate goals. They also ‎want to know – is it sustainable? Is it responsible? Airlines are under pressure from their ‎customers, their finance sources, and their governments to act sustainably. Visible in-cabin ‎sustainability initiatives are the now necessity.”‎

Alongside safety and wellbeing and sustainability, APEX WORLD CLASS recognizes ‎excellence in superior service, brand integrity, space and comfort, presence, customer ‎recognition, and relevance of cuisine. ‎

To be awarded WORLD CLASS airlines must qualify via a series of steps: an audit conducted ‎by industry professionals from Yates and Partners, aviation’s premier guest experience ‎consultancy; peer review by Associate Professor Dr. Maxwell Winchester at Victoria University, ‎Melbourne; and a review of one year’s NPS customer comments.‎

The seven airlines honored with the inaugural APEX WORLD CLASS honors were:‎

Emirates – For elegant service delivery, high standards, engaging crew, best in class ‎entertainment (IFE), quality-first mindset.‎

Japan Airlines – For outstanding hospitality, consistent attention to detail, warm and ‎personal, discipline in service delivery.‎

KLM – For world-leading sustainability with a circular economy mindset evident at all ‎levels, remarkable efficiency and engagement.‎

Qatar Airways – For ultimate quality and detail management, generous space and seat ‎concepts, guest experience innovation, impeccable dish presentations.‎

Saudia – For excellence in hospitality, exemplary safety “keeping me safe”, cutting edge ‎innovation, flawlessly impressive dining.‎

Singapore Airlines – For consistently excellent service delivery and individual attention. ‎Elevated service standards, notable brand integrity, and best in-class customer retention.‎

Turkish Airlines – For its excellence in cuisine, extraordinary generosity, brand integrity, ‎safe travels.‎