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July 13, 2020



Today's Top Stories


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


Middle East Airlines Selects Panasonic Avionics IFEC

Middle East Airlines’ (MEA) new fleet of nine Airbus A321neos will be equipped with seatback IFE and, for the first time, in-flight connectivity, all powered by Panasonic Avionics. In total, 15 of the airline’s A321 family aircraft will be linefit with Panasonic’s eX1 system with high-definition touchscreens, handsets and power ports at each seat. A next-gen satellite modem offers 20-times greater in-flight Wi-Fi bandwidth than previously available, according to Panasonic. Last Friday, MEA took delivery of its first A321neo.

Panasonic Avionics | Related MEA Takes Delivery of First Airbus A320neo Family Aircraft Powered by Pratt & Whitney GTF Engines – Middle East Airlines-Air Liban



DXB Offers Premium Streaming Content for Travelers

Dubai International Airport is giving travelers access to content from the Disney+, HBO and Universal Studios libraries, as well as a selection of Hollywood films and Arabic media. The offering comes thanks to a partnership with OSN, a satellite broadcaster that offers a streaming app. Airport patrons can find a link to the app once connected to the facility’s Wi-Fi network, and enjoy access for 24 hours. Eugene Barry, executive vice-president of Commercial at Dubai Airports, said that the service responds to the evolving expectation of travelers and “continues to build on the capabilities of our popular WOW-Fi platform.”  

Dubai Airports | Related DXB Wows Passengers with the World’s Fastest Free Airport Wi-Fi – Business Wire



Wizz Air Abu Dhabi Will Launch in October With Six Routes

Wizz Air Abu Dhabi has unveiled its initial route network, which includes flights to Alexandria, Athens, Kutaisi, Larnaca, Odesa and Yerevan, served by two brand-new Airbus A321neos. Four additional aircraft are slated to join the fleet in the first six months of operation, and additional routes will be added. The new airline will add an annual capacity of 350,000 seats to the capital of the United Arab Emirates. Wizz Air’s first flights to Abu Dhabi launched earlier this month, from Budapest and Bucharest. The low-cost carrier will launch further routes, from Sofia, Katowice and Cluj-Napoca, in September.

Breaking Travel News | Related Air Arabia Abu Dhabi set for take-off next week – Arabian Aerospace



US Airline Employment Trends Downward; Emirates Looks to Cut 9,000 Jobs

The latest figures from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics reveal that US airline employment levels in mid-May totalled 696,534, a low not seen since April 2017 and a 2.8% month-over-month decrease. US aviation unions are pushing the federal government to add to the existing $25-billion bailout package. The COVID-19 pandemic is also responsible for upcoming job cuts at the world’s biggest long-haul carrier. Emirates president Sir Tim Clark said that the layoffs conducted thus far were insufficient. This week, 700 of the airline's 4,500 pilots were given redundancy notices. The cuts have been focused on Airbus A380 pilots; the airline’s Boeing aircraft have lower seat counts and are easier to fill.

Travel Industry Wire | Related Emirates set to cut 9,000 jobs, citing pandemic – BBC



Cathay Pacific, Interjet Each Raise Capital to Offset Crisis

Virtually all of Cathay Pacific’s shareholders voted in approval of a plan to raise $5 billion, half of which will be raised through the sale of shares to the Hong Kong government. Thirty percent of the funds will be sourced from a rights issue. The next step for the company is to proceed with a restructuring, a process estimated to take two months. Mexico’s Interjet is also restructuring and received a $150 million injection to stabilize its financial health in the interim. The liquidity was offered by a group of investors headed by businessmen Carlos Cabal and Alejandro del Valle.

South China Morning Post | Related Mexico's Interjet gets $150 million capital injection to offset virus hit – Reuters



Condor Deepens Relationship With SITA by Deploying eWAS

Condor is taking steps to optimize fuel consumption and dispatch operations by leveraging two SITA products. The eWAS Pilot allows flight crew to plan more economic, intelligent and flexible routes through satellite-based weather forecasting. The eWAS Dispatch unifies the flight-tracking data shown to both pilots and dispatchers, enhancing processes and collaboration. Stephan Egli, commercial VP Europe, Middle East & Africa, SITA FOR AIRCRAFT, said that amid the push to make flying safer and more sustainable, “the expectation for real-time data flow is growing rapidly.”  

SITA | Related SITAONAIR acquires GTD Air Services – SITAONAIR



For PearsonLloyd, Design Is the Meeting Point of Art and Science

“When we were developing the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class seat, the simplicity of the form ... made me think of Brâncuși sculptures [which are revered for their geometric precision],” said Luke Pearson who heads design studio PearsonLloyd with Tom Lloyd. The studio does some of its best work when seemingly opposing forces, such as art and science, are at play. Another example is how the studio applied color strategically to Lufthansa’s Airbus A350 economy cabin, in an effort to manipulate perceptions of space. This article is part of a series that focuses on 10 of the aviation industry’s top design firms. It was first published in the April/May issue of APEX Experience magazine.

APEX Media | Related It Takes Ten – APEX Media





"[My father] loved flying and traveling, so I wanted to provide him with even more opportunities to do it. Aviation is in my blood.” — Vy Duong, senior project manager, Marketing Innovation, American Airlines

This week, we're featuring Q&A profiles from past issues of #APEXExperienceMag. Read Vy's Q&A here.

> Tweet of the Day

Have you seen the new bathroom near the food court in Domestic Terminal 2? We gave the family room a major upgrade to make travelling with kids a little more comfortable. 👶

Sydney Airport @SydneyAirport


Association News

Make Your Voice Heard: Take the APEX/IFSA Member Survey

With this year's in-person EXPO cancelled, APEX and IFSA are working through a number of activities, including official written notifications, hotel and vendor releases, and legal review. How can you help? Take our quick airline or supplier survey as soon as possible to help us determine how best to serve your needs moving forward!


> Quote of the Day

“With the digital experience, you can have an unlimited number of [products] for sale – far more variety than what fits in the cart.”

Sargunan “Guna” Seenivasan, AirAsia Wi-Fi
Read the article


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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