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March 31, 2020

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Today's Top Stories
 

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

 
 

US Airlines Suggest Cash Disbursement Scheme

In a letter addressed to the US Treasury, US airline executives urged the government to release the $58 billion in loans and grants earmarked for them, which form part of the $2-trillion stimulus package, as soon as possible. Treasury faces an April 1 deadline to issue procedures to airlines to apply for grants. The airline executives suggested that grants be allocated based on salaries and benefits paid by carriers from April 1 through September 30, 2019, while loans be divided by each carrier’s pro rata share of “system available seat miles” for 2019 operations. Airlines that benefit from the stimulus package must continue flying to each destination they serve, and airline executives are reportedly considering consolidating operations in smaller markets to avoid flying nearly-empty planes.

Reuters | Related Airlines mull temporary service consolidation — Travel Weekly

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Virgin Australia Wants Bailout, Emirates Will Receive One

While Virgin Australia claims it has enough cash on reserve to weather a six-month restricted travel situation, it is also warning the government that it may eventually need a $1.4-billion loan. Cognizant of the fact that the Australian government "can’t pick winners and losers," Virgin Australia CEO Paul Scurrah outlined a comprehensive support plan in which Qantas, with three-times-higher revenue, would receive $4.2 billion in support. The government of Dubai announced it would inject funding into Emirates, which suspended passenger operations this month. Further details have yet to be announced, and it is unclear if flydubai would also receive government assistance.

Executive Traveller | Related Dubai promises state support, new funding for Emirates airline — Reuters

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Companies Continue to Scale Back, While Some Resume Critical Operations

While Airbus was forced to wind down its production in Spain until April 9 as a result of government measures restricting non-essential activity, the airframer still managed to operate an air-bridge flight from Madrid to China. It sent an Airbus A330-200 tanker to collect over four million face masks to be donated to health systems in France, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom. Meanwhile, Embraer has resumed critical operations in Brazil. Employees have been on paid leave since March 24. Air Canada temporarily laid off 16,500 employees as part of a cost-reduction plan, while Lufthansa will introduce part-time working for cabin, ground staff and management in Frankfurt and Munich.

Airbus | Related Embraer resumes essential activities — Aircraft Interiors International

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Inflight Dublin Launches Relaxing IFE Content Using Binaural Beats

Inflight Dublin has created EASE, a 10-minute long video incorporating binaural beats, breathing exercises and calming visuals to promote passenger well-being. Binaural means the left and right ear each receive a different tone through a set of headphones, but the brain processes them together as one sound in what experts call an auditory illusion. Inflight Dublin has created its binaural beats so that passengers will hear a tone that falls into the alpha frequency, a type of brainwave that encourages wakeful relaxation. According to the company, the video is compatible with all seatback and wireless in-flight entertainment systems, and can be customized to include the airline’s branding. 

APEX Media | Related FlyWell’s Self-Care in the Air Program Aims to Reduce COVID-19 Stress — APEX Media

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Finnair Introduces New Fare Class

Finnair has begun offering a lower-priced business-class fare called Business Light. This fare does not cover any checked bags, while normal business-class fares will now include two checked bags, instead of three, as was previously the case. Customers who opt for Business Light will earn less elite miles and will not be allowed to change dates or ask for a refund. Business Light will be valid as of this fall on flights within Europe as well as to Asia.

Simple Flying | Related Lufthansa's plans to unbundle business class — Executive Traveller

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ST Engineering First to Use Magnesium in Seats

During the Singapore Airshow in February, ST Engineering debuted an economy-class seat with a magnesium alloy frame, which it claims is an industry first. While the material offers significant weight savings, it was banned from use in aircraft cabins due to flammability concerns. The ban was lifted in 2015, and ST is open to exploring business models that involve licensing or partnership deals. Magnesium is considered stronger than aluminum, but manufacturing costs remain high. Certification could be within 12-18 months and will first be pursued with EASA, following ST’s usual certification route.

Runway Girl Network | Related According to Tangerine, Good Design Boils Down to One Thing: Making Things Better – APEX Media

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Lotte Duty Free Opens Smart Store in Seoul

Lotte Duty Free transformed the first floor of its flagship location at a mall in Seoul into a “smart store” that minimizes customer wait times by reducing the prominence of clerks. Shoppers use their mobile device to access augmented reality experiences offered by the store’s various beauty and cosmetics brands. They also use a digital shopping cart during checkout. The store caters to Chinese customers by allowing WeChat functionality and offers detailed product-specific information in Korean, English, Japanese and simplified Chinese. Lotte Duty Free said that it plans to expand the concept to its other stores.

Moodie Davitt Report | Related OTG to Use Amazon’s Just Walk Out Technology to Bring Checkout-free Shopping to Airports — Aviation Pros

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> PHOTO OF THE DAY

 
 

Great contrast between the light blue sky and dark blue tail of this GoAir Airbus A320! Captured by @deeptisharma747 (via Instagram).

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

 
 

> Tweet of the Day

This little boy and four other children can dream of a future filled with love thanks to @CanEmbHaiti and many Air Transat employees. Why? Because they will soon meet their new families.

Air Transat @airtransat

 
 
 

Association News

Movie Mates Is One of APEX’s Newest Members

Since 2012 Movie Mates has been supplying various airlines with Polish film content as well as producing its own formats. We work directly with LOT Polish Airlines and continue to supply CSPs like Global Eagle (regularly for Emirates), also Spafax, In-flight Dublin and others. Learn about the different categories of APEX membership and apply now.

 
 
 
 

> Quote of the Day

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"Divide each difficulty into as many parts as is feasible and necessary to resolve it."

Rene Descartes

 
 

Until tomorrow

 
 

ABOUT APEX

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 apex.aero 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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