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March 20, 2020



Today's Top Stories



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


Governments Worldwide Begin Assisting Cash-Strapped Airlines

Yesterday the US Senate proposed loans destined for the airline industry amounting to $58 billion. Emphasizing that the package does not constitute a bailout, the government could receive warrants, stock options, or stock as a condition of assistance. In Northern Europe, three countries have earmarked funds for national airlines. Norway offered $537 million in loan guarantees, with half available to Norwegian Air; Finland’s government has provisionally agreed to provide a state guarantee of up to $642 million to assist flag-carrier Finnair; and Sweden approved a proposal to issue credit guarantees of up to $488 million to airlines, of which 30% will be allocated to Scandinavian Airlines. Air New Zealand has also secured standby funding of up to $511 million.

Reuters | Related Norwegian Air’s $270 Million State Rescue Comes With Strings — BNN Bloomberg



Coronavirus: Delta Increases Cuts to 70%, Cathay Suspends 96% of Flights

In an unprecedented move for the company, Delta Air Lines will cut capacity by 70% “until demand starts to recover.” Half of Delta’s fleet, comprising more than 600 aircraft, will be grounded. In a memo, CEO Ed Bastian expressed gratitude to the roughly 10,000 Delta employees who have taken voluntary leave and encouraged more workers to do the same. The stark drop in travel demand and increasing number of travel restrictions have hampered Cathay Pacific even more significantly – the airline will cut 96% of flights in April and May. After announcing the suspension of most international and US flights, Air Canada decided to temporarily lay off more than half of its 9,750 flight attendants.

Delta | Related Cathay Pacific cuts 96 per cent of flights as coronavirus stops travel — Business Traveller



Probe Finds No Wrongdoing Between AirAsia, Airbus

An independent probe into allegations linking AirAsia and Airbus in a bribery scandal has revealed that the airline’s procurement process was legitimate. Chief executive Tony Fernandes and chairman Kamarudin Meranun were reinstated after having voluntarily stepped down from their posts on February 4. Authorities are still investigating the matter, which revolves around a $50-million Airbus sponsorship agreement with the now-defunct Caterham Formula 1 racing team owned by Fernandes and Kamarudin, and the airline’s subsequent purchase of 180 Airbus aircraft. Today AirAsia Group said the sponsorship was not linked to any of its purchase decisions.

Business Times | Related AirAsia CEO Fernandes and chairman step aside as Airbus bribery allegations probed – Channel News Asia



[PHOTOS] Flitetec Launches Water-Based Antibacterial Cleaner

Originally slated for a reveal at AIX, Flitetec decided to push ahead with the immediate launch of MX14 Aero, an aviation-grade cleaning solution. The antibacterial product is designed to remove ink and stain marks from leather and soft furnishings, and can also be used on plastics in galleys, seats and lavatories. Flitetec notes that MX14 Aero can help combat the spread of coronavirus as airlines increase frequency of cleaning. Managing director Trevor Lea said the cleaner is the only one in the industry to be 100% biodegradable, and cuts single-use plastic because it’s refillable.

Aircraft Interiors International | Related Flitetec adjustable holder aims to accommodate 90% of tablets on board — Runway Girl Network



LSG Group Celebrates Record Year

Revenues were up 2.3% in 2019 for LSG Group, buoyed by contract renewals with Delta Air Lines, United Airlines and AirBaltic, the opening of new locations and the forming of strategic partnerships. CFO and labor director Dr. Kristin Neumann said the results have given the company the financial strength to navigate the current crisis in the travel industry. LSG achieved success despite having to compensate for the loss of two major clients in 2018. Other highlights from last year include winning QSAI Awards, taking over the management of Japan Airlines’ lounges in Frankfurt and subsidiary Retail inMotion overseeing Cathay Pacific’s onboard sales.

LSG Group | Related Delta Extends LSG Sky Chefs Contract – APEX Media



Lufthansa Allows Employees With Medical Training to Volunteer

Understanding that additional medical personnel will be needed to effectively fight the coronavirus pandemic, Lufthansa is allowing staff with medical training to lend a hand in medical facilities. The airline will release such staff quickly and unbureaucratically, and is currently ironing out the details of the scheme. Lufthansa Group is also operating around 140 repatriation flights, collaborating with world governments, tourism companies and cruise lines to transport 20,000 people home.

Lufthansa | Related Lufthansa Group achieves adjusted EBIT of 2 billion euros in a difficult economic environment — Lufthansa



Air NZ Mitigates Engine Problems With Disruption Management

Before the coronavirus pandemic slashed demand, Air New Zealand was faced with the opposite problem: risk of capacity deficits on and off since 2017 due to unpredictable issues with the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines on its Boeing 787 fleet. By proactively enacting a robust disruption management plan, including leasing aircraft and hiring more staff, the carrier has been able to maintain capacity and minimize flight disruptions.

APEX Media | Related [PHOTOS] Economy Skynest: Air NZ Hatches Bunk Bed Prototype — APEX Media





The photographer likens the face of this Cathay Pacific Airbus A350 to a panda's! Captured at Chubu Centrair International Airport by @skyhirotaka (via Instagram).

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


> Tweet of the Day

#TBT to a few weeks ago: On a flight from Tel Aviv to London, @ELALUSA used Viasat internet to test Biobeat, which tracks patient vitals and sends them to doctors on the ground via the cloud. Data was sent to a leading Israeli hospital for real-time review. (Photos: Rafi Dabush)

Viasat Aviation @ViasatAviation


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 and scholarships will be awarded in August. APEX members and their families are encouraged to apply! Click here for more information.


> Quote of the Day


"A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him."

David Brinkley


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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