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June 28, 2019



Today's Top Stories



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


Air Canada Finalizes Air Transat Takeover Plan

Air Canada has finalized its plan to take over Air Transat. Under the terms of a binding agreement that has been unanimously approved by the board of directors of Transat, Air Transat’s parent company, Air Canada will acquire all outstanding shares for $9.93 each, valuing the company at $397 million. “Air Canada intends to preserve the Transat and Air Transat brands and maintain the Transat head office and its key functions in Montreal,” said Calin Rovinescu, president and CEO of Air Canada. If the deal is cleared by regulators, the takeover is expected to be completed by early 2020.  

Breaking Travel News | Related [VIDEO] APEX Insider: Air Transat’s New A321neoLR – APEX Media



Finnair Completes Ka-Band Connectivity Rollout on Narrow-Body Fleet

Finnair announced it has completed installing in-flight Wi-Fi across its entire Airbus narrow-body fleet that operates on the Nordic carrier’s European fleets. The airline said the Viasat Ka-band connectivity supports speeds of 12Mbps or higher and is enough to support media streaming. Finnair is offering two browsing packages: a basic web browsing and e-mail option, and a streaming package that supports video and music streaming.

Finnair | Related PaxEx Review: Finnair’s New LAX-HEL Route – APEX Media



United Removes “Continental” From Parent Company Name

United Airlines has removed the word “Continental” from the name of its parent company. United Continental Holdings Inc. became United Airlines Holdings Inc. at the close of trading on Thursday. The Chicago-based carrier said the change will “show the world we’re truly a united United,” nearly a decade after the merger between United and Continental Airlines. United told employees in a memo that the “name change reflects our desire to move our airline forward.”

Bloomberg | Related Trading Gold for Blue: Oscar Munoz Speaks to APEX About United’s New Livery – APEX Media



WestJet and Delta Receive JV Approval From Canadian Regulator

WestJet has secured approval from the Canadian Competition Bureau (CCB) for its transborder joint venture with Delta Air Lines. The proposed JV, which was agreed initially in July 2018, still requires approval from the US Department of Transportation. The deal will expand the two carriers' codeshare agreement and allow them to coordinate schedules, collocate at airports and expand their networks in the future. “The joint venture will lead to more consumer choice, connectivity and economic benefits on both sides of the border by growing US-Canada business and tourism travel,” said Ed Sims, WestJet president and CEO.  

FlightGlobal | Related WestJet Reveals New Brand, Platinum Rewards Tier and First International Dreamliner Routes – APEX Media



APAC Carriers Are Prioritizing Nose-to-Tail Connectivity, Says SITAONAIR

While many of SITAONAIR’s customers in the Asia-Pacific region are already flying with in-flight connectivity, VP Asia-Pacific Katrina Korzenowski said the company has noticed a “huge shift” in the region towards nose-to-tail connectivity. “Airlines know their existing or new generation fleets need to be connected with their ground operations. They also know they need to empower their talent with the digital tools they expect, while delivering on key performance indicators, such as on-time performance,” she commented.

APEX Media | Related SITAONAIR Inks Connectivity Deals With PAL and Starlux – APEX Media



Emirates to Launch Passport-Free Trial on Australia–London Flights

Emirates will launch a trial of biometric passport-free travel later this year. The trial will use automated facial recognition technology to replace passport checks on select flights between Australia and London via Dubai. Emirates did not say which airports in Australia would participate in the trial. A similar trial has already been conducted on flights between London’s Gatwick Airport and Dubai International Airport. “We learned from that trial that the technology works: the idea of a single identity applied in different locations works, and if we can make that work globally, that’s the intention,” said Dubai Airports CEO Paul Griffiths.

Australian Business Traveller | Related Blockchain-Based Biometric Pilot Launches for Passport-Free Flights Between Canada and Netherlands – APEX Media



Flybe Goes Nut-Free

Flybe announced it will remove all nut-based products from its flights, starting July 1. The UK regional carrier said the move is part of a commitment to improve the passenger experience for people suffering from allergies, but it cautioned that it could not guarantee that any public environment would be completely nut-free. “We take the issue of nut allergies extremely seriously and, as an additional measure to those already being taken, have now removed all peanuts and nut-based products from our onboard Café Flybe menu,” said Roy Kinnear, Flybe’s chief commercial officer.

Business Traveller | Related Multiplying Menus: Carriers Cater to Increasing Number of Dietary Restrictions – APEX Media





One hundred years of KLM. Captured by @cassidysvacay (via Instagram)

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VS69 is cleared for takeoff. ✈️ Next Stop: WorldPride in NYC. 🏳️‍🌈

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Association News

Deadline 12 JULY: APEX + Crystal Cabin Award

The category ‘Best Customer Journey Experience’ comprises all products that help to improve the customer experience journey. If you know of a hardware or software product that fuels innovative customer experiences, click here to submit.


Business Happens at EXPO

APEX EXPO’s show floor is the epicenter for members looking for the latest technologies, products and more. Register today to interact with more than 300 exhibitors who will be onsite ready to demonstrate the latest technology that will shape the future of aviation.



Spafax is looking for a passionate individual with a strong interest for entertainment, technology and aviation to join our team. The Account Manager has overall responsibility for all aspects of content delivery to the airline account: leveraging a thorough understanding of the airline's commercial and strategic objectives, fleet plans, and competitive positioning. Click here for the full job description.
> Account Manager - Spafax Atlanta, GA, USA


> Quote of the Day


"You got to be brave. If you feel something, you've really got to risk it."

Mel Brooks


Until next week



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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