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March 16, 2020



Today's Top Stories



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


Coronavirus: US Airlines Feel Pinch of Social Distancing

Over the weekend, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that gatherings of 50 or more people be canceled or postponed for a period of two weeks. United Airlines’ top two executives said that running an airline is “nearly impossible” under such circumstances, and planned to cut its capacity by half over the next two months. American Airlines also announced it would cut 75% of its international capacity through May 6, while keeping its short-haul schedule intact. The US travel ban on Europe, which went into effect at midnight last Friday, has been expanded to include foreign nationals arriving from Britain and Ireland. US residents seeking entry from the affected nations would be required to self-quarantine for a period of two weeks.

Flight Global | Related Coronavirus: US travel ban to extend to UK and Ireland from Monday — Business Traveller



Flight Cancellations Deepen Around the World

The coronavirus pandemic continues to put global airlines to the test. Ryanair and easyJet announced major cuts to their flight schedules, but both companies noted that their balance sheets are strong enough to survive the effects of the pandemic on travel demand. The Danish and Latvian governments have enforced lockdowns of their borders, prompting Scandinavian Airlines to halt almost all traffic and airBaltic to cease all flights. Austrian Airlines announced it will cancel all flights until at least March 28. IAG Group chief executive Willie Walsh announced he will not retire in ten days as expected in order to allow his successor, Luis Gallego, the opportunity to steer Iberia through the crisis for the next few months.

The Guardian | Related ​British Airways-owner, easyJet make drastic cuts to try to survive coronavirus — Reuters



TSA Allowing 12-Ounce Bottles of Sanitizer on Board

On Friday, the TSA announced it is allowing an exception to its carry-on restrictions. Travelers can now exceed the 3.4-ounce limit on hand sanitizer and bring a bottle holding up to 12 ounces in a carry-on bag. Wrapped disinfectant wipes will also be allowed on board. All other liquids, gels and aerosols are still limited to the normal restrictions. Travelers who plan on bringing a larger bottle of sanitizer must be screened separately and should arrive at the airport earlier.

Travel Pulse | Related Coronavirus (COVID-19) information – TSA



Crack Forms on Southwest Aircraft, FAA Investigates

The FAA is investigating a foot-long crack that appeared in the crown of a Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-700 during a flight from Boise, Idaho, to Las Vegas last Monday. The aircraft gradually lost cabin pressure, but oxygen masks were not deployed and the flight did not need to be diverted to maintain safety. The pilots descended to 22,000 feet and eventually landed safely. FAA rules mandate inspection of the affected area every 1,500 flights, and said it was too soon to decide whether or not to increase this frequency. Southwest maintains that all of its aircraft are compliant with required inspections.

Bloomberg | Related Southwest disputes U.S. government audit on safety lapses, shares slide — Reuters



Immfly to Enhance Digital Platform Across All IAG Airlines

Immfly has partnered with IAG to expand and maintain .air, the in-flight digital platform deployed across the airline group’s global network. The development of .air will see the introduction of products, services and retail opportunities designed to unlock new revenue streams. These new offerings will be managed remotely using Immfly’s software, which will also give member airlines the option to tailor the products and services to their brand and customer proposition. The new partnership builds on over five years of collaboration between Immfly and IAG member airline Iberia Express.

APEX Media | Related Boeing HorizonX Invests in Immfly for Digital Future – APEX Media



Air Tahiti Nui Avoids US Layover, Completes World’s Longest Flight

The US travel ban on Europe poses a challenge for certain long-haul flights that normally stop in the US to refuel and restock. As a result, Air Tahiti Nui operated a nonstop 16-and-a-half-hour flight from Tahiti to Paris, avoiding a layover in Los Angeles. This flight was the world’s longest, although in the coming days the airline plans to reroute the flight through Canada and Guadeloupe. Low-cost carrier French bee is rerouting its Paris–Tahiti flight through Pointe-à-Pitre in the Caribbean, while Air France will continue to land at LAX, but only allow travelers who conform to the presidential proclamation.

Business Insider | Related Agents Say Caribbean Travel Thus Far COVID-19 Resistant — Travel Pulse



AIRE Will Refurbish Wamos Air Business-Class Seats

Madrid-based aircraft interiors refurbishment firm AIRE will modify the business-class seats on two Airbus A330s belonging to Wamos Air. The airline requested the seats offer a 44-inch pitch, and for the existing Panasonic Avionics IFE system to be replaced with Safran’s RAVE solution. AIRE also added a leather seat cover with diamond stitching to ensure a uniform design for the operator’s fleet. In 2018, AIRE was tapped to refurbish the first-class seats on a Wamos Air Boeing 747.

Runway Girl Network | Related [PHOTOS] EL AL Launches Collins Silhouette MOVE Divider on Redesigned 737-800 — APEX Media





A CRJ-200 is backed by a gorgeous sunset. Captured by @linap.londono (via Instagram).

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> Tweet of the Day

From up here, it is easy to see that we are truly all in this together. #EarthStrong

Jessica Meir @Astro_Jessica


Association News

The IFSA Foundation Is Now Accepting Applications For Its 2020 Scholarship Cycle

The International Flight Services Association (IFSA) Foundation scholarship program is designed to advance the growing in-flight catering and hospitality industries, as well as the airline passenger experience industry, and support members of IFSA and APEX. The 2020 application cycle is now open. The deadline to apply is May 15, 2020, and scholarships will be awarded in August. APEX members and their families are encouraged to apply! For more information visit:


> Quote of the Day


"Life is a series of baby steps."

Hoda Kotb


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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