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January 2, 2018



Today's Top Stories



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


IAG to Buy Niki for €20 Million

IAG announced on Friday that it would buy Niki, airberlin’s insolvent Austrian holiday airline, for €20 million. If acquired, Niki would become part of the low-cost carrier Vueling, which is owned by IAG, and would be incorporated in Austria, employing 740 of Niki’s 1,000 former employees. Niki’s assets include 15 Airbus A320 aircraft and slots at airports in Vienna, Dusseldorf, Munich, Palma and Zurich.

Reuters | Related Niki files for insolvency after Lufthansa pulls bid – FlightGlobal



Tunisia Suspends Emirates Flights

Emirates flights to and from Tunisia have been suspended since December 25, after the airline denied boarding to Tunisian women on Dubai-bound flights on December 22. Sources said the UAE had "voiced fear that an attack will probably be committed by Tunisian women or women with Tunisian passports." Emirates announced that it would stop flights between Tunis and Dubai, as instructed by Tunisian authorities, prompting an outcry on Twitter.

CNN | Related No women no fly: Twitter tackles Tunisia-Emirates spat – Al Jazeera



KLM Introduces Films With Audio Description

KLM today began offering audio description for select films through its in-flight entertainment (IFE) system. The feature, which makes IFE content accessible for blind and visually impaired passengers, is available on intercontinental flights on Boeing 777 and 787 aircraft. The first three films to include audio description are Home Again, Kingsman: The Golden Circle and The Lego Ninjago Movie. KLM plans to add more titles to this list in the coming months.  

KLM | Related How To: Make In-Flight Entertainment Accessible for Visually Impaired Passengers – APEX Media



Air New Zealand Tests Google’s Real-Time Translation Technology

Air New Zealand’s customer service team is testing Google Pixel Buds’ real-time translation feature. The wireless headphones enable live translation of 40 languages, so more staff members can help customers when those who speak their language are unavailable. “Google Pixel Buds could assist in areas such as check-in and boarding, as well as in flight to help our staff communicate effectively with international customers,” said Avi Golan, Air New Zealand’s chief digital officer.

Tnooz | Related Chefs in the Sky: Michael Meredith Gives Air New Zealand Dishes Local Flavor – APEX Media



Missed Connection: Can Airlines Ensure Fleet-Wide IFC Consistency?

With more carriers offering in-flight Wi-Fi and more providers to choose from, a mixed approach to connectivity across an airline’s fleet is common, if not inevitable. Ensuring a consistent Wi-Fi experience across different aircraft largely depends on the portal experience, service cost and packaging, as well as balancing the demand for both superior and consistent performance. Addressing these issues is key for airlines, especially as in-flight Wi-Fi transitions from a luxury amenity to an expected necessity on board.

APEX Media | Related Working Toward In-Flight Connectivity Standardization – APEX Media



2017 Safest Year in Commercial Aviation History, According to Reports

There was one fatality per 7.36 million flights in 2017, according to the Aviation Safety Network, making it the safest year ever for commercial aviation, both in terms of the number of fatal accidents and the number of lives lost. A separate report by Dutch consultancy firm To70 agreed that 2017 was an “exceptionally good year” for civil aviation safety, reporting only two fatal passenger airline accidents, both involving small turboprops.  

Air Transport World | Related ASN data show 2017 was safest year in aviation history – Aviation Safety Network



Heathrow Increases Airport Fee Discount by 50% for Domestic Flights

As of January 1, 2018, passengers flying to any UK destination from Heathrow save an additional £15 on airport charges. Heathrow calls this the biggest fee discount for domestic flights in the airport’s history and claims that it will result in savings of nearly £40 million annually and over £750 million over the next 20 years.    






Planespotting over Houston. Captured by @elguapobarbudo (via Instagram).

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> Tweet of the Day

One of the first events to open up the exhibition season in 2018 will be #APEXTECH (30 – 31 Jan). Meet Stefanie Schuster ( in LA. We'll be sharing many news and announcements in our portfolio for disconnected scenarios, be first to know about them!

Axinom @Axinom


Association News

Join Industry Leaders and Tech Experts at APEX TECH!

APEX TECH provides a crucial forum for technical experts to review and discuss ongoing APEX Technology Committee special projects, which set specifications and standards for the airline industry and focus on applying new technologies to the passenger experience. Reserve your hotel room in LA now!


> Quote of the Day


"Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, Old Time is still a-flying: And this same flower that smiles today, Tomorrow will be dying."

Robert Herrick


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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