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June 26, 2020



Today's Top Stories


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


Slow Uptick in Travel Spells Trouble for Some Airlines, Opportunity For Others

Yesterday Sabre provided a snapshot of the progress being made in the recovery of travel. Gross bookings for June are down 85% year-over-year, compared with 90% during April and May. For some airlines, the damage is unmanageable. Chile-based ONE Airlines has been forced to shutter its business, and low-cost Thai carrier NokScoot is entering liquidation after six years of flying. On the positive side, Emirates is resuming service to Athens, Osaka, Rome and Tokyo in July, growing its current network to 48 cities. Next month will also see easyJet operate around 500 flights per day, Volaris prepare for a 15% bump in capacity and Egyptair resume nonstop flights to 29 global destinations.

Phocuswire | Related Easyjet to operate 500 flights per day from next week – Business Traveller



The Weekly Wrap: IFEC News Abounds, Creating Sense of Optimism

It’s the tenth episode of The Weekly Wrap and there seems to be a sense of optimism in the air. Hosts Maryann Simson and Seth Miller have lots of in-flight entertainment and connectivity news to discuss. David Pook, Burrana’s VP Marketing & Sales Support, joins to provide an in-depth overview of its new Rise IFE platform. Also covered is the new partnership between Bluebox Aviation Systems and Retail inMotion, Air Canada’s new at-home streaming service and ThinKom’s latest milestone. Stay tuned until the end to see how WestJet employees are making the most of quieter terminals!

APEX Media | Related Subscribe to the APEX YouTube Channel



Cyrus Withdraws Bid, Bain Takes Ownership of Virgin Australia

Having grown frustrated with what it called a lack of engagement on the part of administrator Deloitte, New York-based Cyrus Capital pulled out of the Virgin Australia takeover contest. Soon after, it was announced that Bain Capital, the only other bidder, would become the Australian airline’s new owner. The firm will seek to protect as many jobs as possible, honor existing travel credits and reposition Virgin as a mid-market airline. Bain must navigate a recapitalization offer by bondholders wanting to convert debts owed into equity and are offering $1 billion to keep the airline listed on the share market, rather than be taken private by the firm.

Executive Traveller | Related Cyrus abandons Virgin Australia bid, putting Bain in the pilot's seat – Executive Traveller



Virgin Spacecraft’s Second Glide Flight Reaches New Speeds

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo completed a second unpowered test flight at its operating base in New Mexico yesterday, marking another step towards space tourism. During the previous test on May 1, the shuttle reached speeds of Mach 0.7. This time, it flew at higher altitudes and hit Mach 0.8. Virgin Galactic will compare the data from both flights to enhance aerodynamic modeling. After that, the team will enter the next stage of testing – powered space flights – and begin making final modifications to the cabin and inspections of the vehicle and systems. Before the pandemic struck, the company said it would begin commercial operations this summer.

Virgin Galactic | Related Virgin Galactic completes second New Mexico glide test, with rocket-powered flights expected next – CNBC



Passengers Who Fail Temperature Checks Will Receive Refunds: A4A

Airlines For America (A4A) member carriers will provide refunds to any traveler who fails the TSA’s temperature screening procedure. Last month, A4A voiced its support for temperature screening, as it helps protect the health of travelers and staff while restoring confidence in air travel. Meanwhile, Etihad Engineering revealed a slew of new social distancing solutions: a head-level shield for both sides of an airline seat; a flat, horizontal partition which stretches across a middle seat’s armrests to block it off; a simple box-type structure that serves as a seat blocker; and a seat divider. The products constitute minor modifications and do not require seat recertification.

A4A | Related Etihad Engineering develops onboard social distancing solutions – Runway Girl Network



Teague Sees Digital As Fundamental To The Future of Air Travel Design

Teague counts tech giants Amazon, Google and Microsoft among its client list, so it’s no stranger to working with big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning. The company is responsible for introducing exciting new technology into the cabin, having worked on Emirates’ new first-class suites, which feature virtual windows. However, Teague’s president and CEO, John Barratt, believes that the future won’t see craftsmanship eschewed in favor of digital innovation. Instead, he says the two will work together. For example, when working on Oman Air’s business-class cabin, Teague ensured that rather than “bolting IFE elements into place as an afterthought,” it would integrate them from the outset.

APEX Media | Related It Takes Ten – APEX Media



SFO Implements USA’s First Tote-Based Luggage Handling System

San Francisco Airport (SFO) is the first in the US to install Beumer’s CrisBag independent carrier system. Located in Terminal 1, the system works by associating every piece of luggage with its own carrier tote, and an integrated explosive detection system allows bags to remain in the tote during security screening. It ensures that all bags can be tracked and optimizes the entire process by reducing tug traffic. At SFO Terminal 1 security, the new system has made it possible to reduce the number of X-Ray machines by half. Beumer has also been awarded a contract to implement the system at Terminal 3.

Beumer Group | Related CRISBAG TOTE SYSTEM FOR AIRPORTS – Beumer Group





An Air Canada Boeing 787-8 about to land at YVR with a resplendent sunset in the background. Captured by @rk_aviation.

June 20 marked summer solstice, so this week we're featuring only the most sunny #APEXPOTDs.

> Tweet of the Day

Love at first flight! ❤️ Meet one of our FA-vorite couples. Ross spotted Chip in a flight attendant training class 29 years ago, and they've been a perfect pair since. #FlyWithPride #CoupleGoals

Alaska Airlines @AlaskaAir


Association News

APEX/IFSA CEO Announces Cancellation of In-Person EXPO in San Diego

The San Diego Convention Center has notified APEX/IFSA that it will not be able to host this year's EXPO. As our valued members, we are sharing the news with you immediately, though we still have many questions ourselves. APEX and IFSA are working through a number of activities, including official written notifications, hotel and vendor releases, and legal review. Please take our airline or supplier survey as soon as possible to help us determine how best to serve your needs moving forward.


> Quote of the Day

“I went from wanting to leave IFE behind to wanting to come back and really change things up.”

Jovita Toh, Encore Inflight
Read the article


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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