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March 2, 2020



Today's Top Stories



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


APEX/IFSA CEO and Spirit Airlines CCO to Testify Before Congress

A United States Congressional Hearing, titled The Airline Passenger Experience: What It Is and What It Can Be, will take place tomorrow morning. APEX/IFSA CEO Dr. Joe Leader was invited to testify before the US House Transportation Committee’s aviation subcommittee and plans to highlight the positive steps APEX member airlines and vendors are taking to improve the passenger experience. Others who will address the subcommittee include Matt Klein, executive vice-president and chief commercial officer, Spirit Airlines, as well as representatives from Consumer Reports, Paralyzed Veterans of America and the US Government Accountability Office.

APEX Media | Related Congressional Hearing Live Stream — House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure



Coronavirus: Corporate Travel Set to Decline, Says GBTA

The Global Business Travel Association has estimated the coronavirus outbreak could cost the industry almost $47 billion a month. A survey of its members, which include 9,000-plus business travel professionals, revealed that 31% expect travel to resume in the next three months. Amid the weakened air travel demand, Cathay Pacific has canceled more than three-quarters of its weekly flights in March, and American Airlines and British Airways have both decided to waive change fees. Meanwhile, IATA announced a temporary suspension of its rules governing airport slots, which dictate that airlines must fill at least 80% of their slots or risk losing their allocation.

Phocuswire | Related Coronavirus News: Regular Updates on COVID-19’s Impact on the Airline Industry — APEX Media



British Airways Tests Self-Driving Mobility Scooters at JFK

With the number of British Airways customers who require additional assistance expected to increase by 10% next year, the airline has begun testing self-driving and self-navigating electric mobility vehicles at JFK. The user is transported to their gate from check-in while being able to explore the airport freely along the way by setting their desired coordinates. The vehicles, designed by Japan-based WHILL, feature anti-collision technology. Another trial will take place at Heathrow over the next few months.

British Airways | Related Upward Mobility: Self-Driving Wheelchairs at Tokyo’s Narita Airport — APEX Media



Zephyr Concept Fuels Debate Over Stacked Seating Feasibility

California design agency Zephyr Aerospace has launched a new website and several videos to promote its Zephyr Seat. The double-decker concept, configured in a 1-2-1 layout on each level, is promoted as a premium economy retrofit option maintaining the same density found in existing premium economy cabins, while enabling aisle access for all passengers and lie-flat capability via a drop-down footwell cover and space carved from the seat in front. A telescopic ladder is offered, granting access to the upper level of seats. The concept has ignited debate in online forums over potential certification and safety issues related to such vertical configurations.

Zephyr | Related These New Economy Seat Concepts Are Getting Interesting — Flyer Talk



Eurowings Names New Chief Executive

Jens Bischof, the former head of SunExpress, was named chairperson and CEO of Eurowings, succeeding Thorsten Dirks, who took on a new role overseeing IT, digital and innovation for the Lufthansa Group executive board. During the handover ceremony at Cologne Bonn Airport, Bischof, who is a 30-year veteran of Lufthansa Group, praised Dirks for making Eurowings “the clear number two” in Germany after Lufthansa by instilling a high level of punctuality and customer satisfaction.

Business Travel News Europe | Related Schmitt to become chief commercial officer at Eurowings — Travel Daily Media



[VIDEO] Vistara Welcomes First 787-9 Dreamliner

Delhi-based Vistara took delivery of its first Boeing 787-9 aircraft over the weekend, in preparation for its expansion into long-haul international service. The aircraft is the first of six Dreamliners expected to join the fleet by the end of 2021, and has been configured in three classes: business class, with a 44-inch pitch and 76-inch lie-flat bed; premium economy, with a 37-inch pitch in a 2-3-2 layout; and economy with a 31-inch pitch in a 3-3-3 layout. The news comes on the heels of an announcement made last week that Vistara could become the first Indian airline with in-flight connectivity, through an agreement with Nelco and Panasonic Avionics.

Vistara | Related Panasonic’s Nelco tie-up will make Vistara first Indian airline with WiFi onboard — Get Connected



Diehl Expands Presence in Middle East

Diehl Aviation will open a new branch in the Dubai Airport Freezone, a central free trade zone with direct access to Dubai International Airport, in mid-2020. The new customer and sales office will bring the company closer to its clients in the region and allow it to provide improved support in the areas of customer service, cabin upgrades and retrofits.

Diehl | Related [VIDEO] Diehl Aviation Showcases Smart Cabin Concepts — APEX Media





The sun rises over another week! This EVA Air Boeing 787-10 was captured at Macau International Airport by @aviation_fafa (via Instagram).

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


> Tweet of the Day

#OnThisDay 1969: Concorde made its maiden flight. It took off from Toulouse and was in the air for just 27 minutes before the pilot made the decision to land.

BBC Archive @BBCArchive


Association News

APEX Content Market Registration Is Open!

Content Market is the airline industry’s premier content conference that continually brings together airlines, CSPs and distributors. This event attracts over 250 in-flight content decision makers from around the globe. This April, join APEX as we take the premier in-flight content conference to Barcelona. Register now!


> Quote of the Day


“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.”

Dr. Seuss


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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