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December 10, 2018



Today's Top Stories



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


Malaysia Airlines Rebrands First Class as Business Suites

Malaysia Airlines will rebrand its Airbus A380 and A350 first-class cabins as an upgraded version of business-class called Business Suites, starting December 12. However, the change is in name only, as passengers will receive the same meals, drinks, in-flight amenities, pajamas and airport lounge access, but pricing will be positioned in between business- and first-class fares. “We realize that with the recent economic situation, a lot of people have moved away from first class, and a lot of corporate passengers now have the limitation of not flying first class due to corporate policy, so we want to cater to that market and open it up,” said Lau Yin May, Malaysia Airlines’ head of Customer Experience.

Australian Business Traveller | Related Aircraft Seat Design That Dives Beyond the Stats – APEX Media



Brazil’s Government and Embraer to Appeal Court Decision Blocking Boeing JV

Brazil’s government said it will join Embraer in appealing a court decision issued on Thursday last week that blocked the company’s proposed joint venture with Boeing. Embraer announced last July that it planned to sell 80% of its commercial aviation business to Boeing for $3.8 billion, a deal it said was crucial for its survival. However, the aerospace manufacturer needs government approval before the deal can be presented to shareholders.

Reuters | Related Brazil issues injunction to block Boeing-Embraer JV – FlightGlobal



Viasat Will Continue to Appeal EAN Court Decision

Viasat said it is “disappointed” that the UK’s Competition Appeal Tribunal rejected the company’s challenge to communication regulator Ofcom’s decision to authorize Inmarsat’s complementary ground component for the European Aviation Network (EAN). “We remain confident the EAN does not meet the initial license parameters and is therefore, in our opinion, illegal,” said Colin Ward, head of Litigation at Viasat. “We will not be deterred by the UK Court’s judgment and will continue to press our case in the UK and throughout Europe.”

Get Connected | Related Tribunal rules in favor of Ofcom’s EAN authorization decision – Get Connected



[PHOTOS] Virgin Atlantic’s First Refurbished Airbus A330-200 Enters Service

Virgin Atlantic introduced its first of three fully refurbished Airbus A330-200 aircraft featuring a three-class layout. All suites in the business-class cabin benefit from direct-aisle access, more personal space and espresso-colored leather fabric seats that were selected by Virgin Atlantic’s in-house design team. Meanwhile, the premium economy section includes 35 seats with 38 inches of pitch each and an enhanced food and beverage service.

Inflight Online | Related Virgin Atlantic Steps Up Its Amenities Game with Happy Socks – APEX Media



BA to Launch Digital Bag Tags in January

British Airways will launch a digital solution called TAG next month that will allow customers to sync their bag tag with flight info in the airline’s app. BA hasn’t released full details about the service yet, but a promotional page in the latest edition of its Business Life in-flight magazine stated “TAG is a digital reusable bag tag that seamlessly connects your luggage to your smartphone.” The airline says the tags will cost £60 and can be reused “more than 3,000 times.”

Business Traveller | Related Impinj Unveils First RFID Tag Engineered Specifically for Airline Baggage Tracking – APEX Media



Getting Chatty: Aeromexico’s Chatbot Is a Customer Service Hit

Aeromexico’s Aerobot handles more than 90 percent of queries sent by customers through Facebook Messenger. The virtual assistant is also available on WhatsApp, which ranks as the top app in the country, with Facebook Messenger falling closely behind. “In the future, Aerobot will be our best customer and sales agent,” says Manuel Nalda Castro, technology manager, Customer Experience at Aeromexico. “Our bot will be able to do anything that a human agent can do.” The airline is planning to have Aerobot “talk” to WorldTracer, so it can help passengers track their lost luggage.

APEX Media | Related [VIDEO] Results Won’t Vary: Aeromexico’s Case for Consistency – APEX Media



Avolon Firms Order for 100 Airbus A320 and A321neo Aircraft

Avolon has confirmed an order for 75 Airbus A320neos and 25 A321neos in a deal worth $11.5 billion at list prices. The order is the Irish lessor’s largest single order for Airbus aircraft, with deliveries scheduled to begin in 2023. “Our order for 100 A320neo family aircraft … reflects our ambition to become the global leader in the sector,” Avolon CEO Dómhnal Slattery said. “We continue to see robust demand from our customers for the A320neo family globally. This is consistent with our own market research and global fleet forecast.”

Air Transport World | Related Avolon places order for 100 A330neos with Airbus – Breaking Travel News





A stunning view over the Swiss Alps. Captured by @mimifeil (via Instagram)

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> Tweet of the Day

Singer-songwriter @CoziZuehlsdorff debuted her new holiday single “It’s a Wonderful Life” when she performed #Liveat35 from Denver to Chicago for the @TheMagMile Lights Festival parade.

Southwest Airlines @SouthwestAir


Association News

Learn More About Emerging Technologies and Connectivity at APEX TECH

Learn more about emerging technologies like blockchain, biometrics and connectivity solutions at APEX TECH. Registration is now open for the two-day event in Los Angeles, 29-30 January.


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> Quote of the Day


"Man is a genius when he is dreaming.”

Akira Kurosawa


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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