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December 12, 2016



Today's Top Stories



Industry News | Comfort & Ambience | Entertainment & Connectivity | Catering & Services


Boeing Confirms Deal to Sell 80 Aircraft to Iran Air, Talks Up Job Creation

Boeing announced on Sunday that it had firmed its memorandum of understanding to provide Iran Air 80 aircraft, worth $16.6 billion at list prices. The deal, which covers 50 Boeing 737 MAX 8s, 15 777-300ERs and 15 777-9Xs, was made possible after the US government lifted international sanctions related to Iran’s nuclear ambitions. The news comes at a politically sensitive time for Boeing, following Donald Trump’s ongoing criticism of the Iran nuclear accord and his tweet condemning the cost of new Air Force One aircraft. Boeing said in a statement, “Today’s agreement will support tens of thousands of US jobs.”

The New York Times | Related Boeing’s Iran Air Deal May Contribute to Thaw in US-Iran Relations – APEX Media



Factory Fresh: SAA Unveils New Business Class on First A330-300

South African Airways (SAA) has taken delivery of its first of five Airbus A330-300s on order. SAA’s wide-body aircraft can accommodate up to 249 passengers, 46 of which will be in business class with all-new Vantage XL seats by Thompson Aero Seating in a 1-2-1 configuration. The economy-class cabin features 203 slimline seats that offer extra personal space, 10.1-inch seatback displays, USB charging ports and access to shared PC power points. The A330-300 also comes linefit with an in-flight entertainment system, offering up to 100 TV shows, 15 games, 14 radio channels and 170 albums.

Australian Business Traveller | Related South African Airways takes first A330-300 – Air Transport World



[PHOTOS] Polaris Coming to United Airlines’ Boeing 777-300ER in February 2017

United Airlines’ upcoming Boeing 777-300ER will be the first aircraft to feature the new Polaris direct-aisle seats. The Chicago-based carrier expects to receive the first of 14 777-300ERs by the end of the month, and plans for the aircraft and its updated business-class interior to enter service on February 16. The Polaris cabin layout will include space for 60 business-class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration. “Our 777-300ER fleet represents a new era in premium air travel,” said Julia Haywood, executive vice-president and chief commercial officer of United. “With United Polaris business class, we are providing reimagined in-flight dining, new amenities, the first United Polaris lounge at Chicago O’Hare International Airport and now this custom-designed seat.”

USA Today | Related United Launches Polaris Business Class With Vibrant ORD Lounge Opening – APEX Media



EVA Air and Rimowa Launch E-Tag Partnership

EVA Air has partnered with Rimowa to add the luggage manufacturer’s electronic bag tags into its check-in procedures. The Taiwan-based carrier is the first airline in Asia and the second worldwide to officially offer the new service, which aims to speed up airport check-in by enabling passengers to use a mobile app alongside Rimowa’s electronic tag system instead of labeling baggage with conventional adhesive paper tags. The new e-tag check-in service will be available to passengers traveling outbound from select international destinations, including Paris, Vienna, San Francisco, Seattle, Houston, New York, Vancouver, Toronto and Tokyo.

Breaking Travel News | Related How Bag Tag Innovations Are Speeding Up Passenger Processing – APEX Media



Baggage’s Baggage: From Checked Bag Fees to RFID Tracking

The trials and tribulations bags go through on their parallel journeys have long been a challenge to creating a smooth airline passenger experience. From Uber’s proposed bag delivery service to Delta Air Lines’ radio-frequency identification embedded bag-tagging system that can track bags from check-in to final destination, innovators are moving in to lighten the industry burden. “The way we handle bags is definitely going to change,” says Nick Careen, IATA’s senior vice-president of Airport Passenger Cargo and Security. “I don’t think we know the answer yet, but it’s not going to be the way it is now."

APEX Media | Related United Won’t Be the Last Airline to Charge for Overhead Bin Space – Wired



Jet Lag, Economic Drag: Study Finds Effects of Long-Haul Travel Cost UK Businesses Millions

A new study funded by Airbus and travel search engine Kayak has found that jet lag cost British companies an estimated $305 million in 2016. The survey’s results were based on the responses of 1,000 UK adults who traveled long haul in the past year, with findings suggesting that jet lag affects travelers for an average of 2.2 days per trip. According to the study, jet lag impacts 53 million work days for UK staff, who function at an average of 61 percent of their full capacity in the days after long-haul travel. Just under half of respondents admitted to making mistakes that cost an average of $48 at work after a long flight, while seven in 10 also said their mood worsened when suffering from jet lag.

Business Traveller | Related This New Plane Could End Jet Lag for Good – Condé Nast Traveler



Qantas Confirms Nonstop Flights Between Australia and Europe Will Launch in 2018

Qantas has announced it will launch the first-ever regular, nonstop commercial flights linking Europe and Australia. Australia’s flag carrier will begin the direct service between Perth and London in March 2018, using its new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to operate the 9,000-mile-long route. The flight, which will last about 17 hours depending on weather conditions, will be offered 14 times a week. “When Qantas created the Kangaroo Route to London in 1947, it took four days and nine stops," said Qantas’ chief executive officer, Alan Joyce. "Now it will take just 17 hours from Perth nonstop."

The Guardian | Related Far Out Flights: Airlines Race to the Longest Route – APEX Media




Photo of the Day

Flying the friendly (and snowy) skies with United Airlines. Captured by @throughthelensofjoseph (via Instagram).

Use #APEXPOTD for the chance to be featured in the APEX Daily Experience newsletter!


> Tweet of the Day

This story begins before Christmas was a thought. The story is happy, the beginning is not. #WestJetChristmas

WestJet @WestJet


Association News

Register Now for the Plug and Play Winter Summit

Plug and Play’s Winter Summit will take place from December 14 to 15 in Sunnyvale, California. Fifty startups will present on topics ranging from travel and hospitality to mobility and the Internet of Things. Register now with the promo code "APEXGuest” for reduced rates.


APEX 2017 Events Are Just Around the Corner!

APEX events offer unique and valuable forums for airline passenger experience industry experts and newcomers alike to gain technical knowledge, acquire professional development skills and explore the latest industry trends. APEX EXPO, MultiMedia Market, regional conferences and technology conferences are just some of the industry events that bring together airlines, buyers and suppliers in order to improve the passenger experience. Click here for more information on upcoming APEX events.


> Quote of the Day

“Once you break through the clouds to the clear blue beyond, the space, the silence, the transcendent beauty, it’s church for the irreligious man.”

Ben Miles as Peter Woolridge Townsend in The Crown


Until tomorrow



The Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) encompasses a network of airlines, businesses and professionals that are committed to providing a world-class airline experience for passengers around the globe. Every day, APEX members are improving every aspect of the airline experience, from designing, building and installing seating, entertainment and communications systems on commercial aircraft, to airport lounges and in-flight dining. Visit for more information. APEX is professionally managed by Kellen Company, the premier global association management firm with offices and representation in the United States, Europe, China, the Middle East, India and Southeast Asia.


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