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July 25, 2018



Today's Top Stories



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


Etihad Partners With Acqua di Parma for Amenity Kits

Etihad Airways has worked with amenity kit supplier Buzz Products to forge a new partnership with Italian fragrance brand Acqua di Parma. While the airline has offered Acqua di Parma toiletries to passengers in its suite, The Residence, since 2014, this agreement now includes a range of new amenity bags and toiletries for passengers in first and business class on long-haul flights, too.

APEX Media | Related Etihad Airways launches WhatsApp service – Business Traveller



WSJ Interviews American and Delta CEOs About Shrinking Airline Seats

Are the narrowing confines of today’s economy-class cabins justifiable? The Wall Street Journal interviewed Delta CEO Ed Bastian and American Airlines CEO Doug Parker for their thoughts. Each CEO was interviewed in a middle seat in coach class on board one of their respective airlines’ Boeing 777-200 aircraft. Neither apologized for packing in more skinnier seats, saying that passengers who want more space have the option of paying for it. Both CEOs said they regularly fly in economy class and each pledged that seats won’t get any tighter.

The Verge | Related When Airline CEOs Try the Cheap Seats – The Wall Street Journal



IAG Appoints Flybe Executive to Head Level

IAG has appointed Flybe’s chief strategy officer Vincent Hodder as the first CEO of Level, its low-cost subsidiary. Hodder, who previously worked at Jetstar Airways and VivaAerobus before joining Flybe, will take up his new role on September 5. Hodder described Level as “more than just a startup airline brand,” adding that, “It's a new concept that uses technology to provide customers with control over the way they travel, and has the lowest possible costs.”

FlightGlobal | Related IAG's Level airline plans budget long-haul flights from Vienna – Reuters



Air Canada Proposes $191-Million Bid to Acquire Aeroplan

Air Canada and three financial firms are proposing to buy the Aeroplan loyalty program from Aimia for $191 million. The group, which includes Toronto-Dominion Bank, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and Visa Canada, would also assume liability for Aeroplan points, worth around $2 billion. Air Canada said last year that it would withdraw from Aimia’s Aeroplan program and start its own loyalty scheme in 2020. “The proposed transaction would result in a positive outcome for Aimia shareholders and Aeroplan members, allowing for a smooth transition of Aeroplan members’ points to Air Canada’s new loyalty program launching in 2020,” the four companies said.  

Bloomberg | Related Lifestyle Loyalty: Rethinking Airline Reward Programs – APEX Media



Scoot Goes Live With MARVIE Transactional Chatbot

Since MARVIE’s soft launch earlier this month, the chatbot has serviced on average 50 unique users each day and successfully resolved 37.5% of queries. A full launch followed yesterday with MARVIE now able to help customers search for flights, display fares and seat availability reflected on the airline’s website and mobile app, make flight bookings and allow payment by credit card, in addition to handling customer queries in English.

APEX Media | Related Air Travel Industry Taps Into Micro-Moments for New Ancillary Revenue Opportunities – APEX Media



UN Court Rules That UAE Blockade Discriminated Against Qataris

The UN’s International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that the blockade imposed on Qatar by the UAE resulted in discrimination against Qatari nationals. According to Monday’s ruling, the UAE must immediately reunite Qatari families affected by the blockade and allow Qatari students to continue studying in the UAE. Qatar Airways was initially forced to reduce flights during the first few weeks of the sanctions, with the airline barred from flying over Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt. Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker has described the sanctions as an “illegal blockade.”

CNN | Related Qatar Airways adapts to blockade, may avoid making a loss – Reuters



Turkish Airlines to Sponsor CNN’s Travel Show Hosted by Richard Quest

Turkish Airlines announced it has become the exclusive sponsor of Quest’s World of Wonder, CNN International’s latest video series. The partnership will see Turkish Airlines branding in every 30-minute episode and across CNN’s digital platform. “We have a strong long-standing relationship with CNN and we knew the series would be in safe hands with a seasoned traveler such as Richard Quest,” said İlker Aycı, Turkish Airlines Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee. “The series was a natural choice for us given the synergies in global appeal, reach and audience.”

Breaking Travel News | Related Turkish Airlines installing in-house produced wireless IFE system – Air Transport World





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> Tweet of the Day

Last week's Twitter quiz asked the question: what percentage of U.S. students are required to access the internet to complete assignments outside of the classroom? The answer is 96.5%. Thanks for participating! #DigitalDivide #DigitalInclusion #InternetAnywhere #homeworkgap

Viasat Inc. @ViasatInc


Association News

Less Than One Week Left to Submit a Nomination for the New Crystal Cabin Award

For the first time ever, a prestigious Crystal Cabin Award will be given out at APEX EXPO. The category Best Customer Journey Experience recognizes the use of products that help to improve the customer experience journey across airline travel categories. The finalists and award winner will provide airlines and their suppliers an inspirational example on how to optimize the cabin for end-to-end travel solutions centered around personalized passenger experience. Nominate by 31 July.


> Quote of the Day


“Everyone knew it was impossible, until a fool who didn’t know came along and did it.”

Albert Einstein


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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