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July 23, 2020



Today's Top Stories


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


China and UAE Make COVID-19 Tests Mandatory for Inbound Travelers

The United Arab Emirates announced that starting August 1 all inbound and transiting travelers must be screened for COVID-19 in their country of origin and present the results during check-in. Children under 12 and those with severe and moderate disabilities are exempt from the requirement. Test results will be considered valid for 96 hours. The Civil Aviation Administration of China presented a similar entry requirement, asking travelers to take a COVID-19 test within five days before boarding their flight to the nation. Chinese travelers must upload their test results using a special WeChat Mini Program, while foreigners should apply for a health declaration letter at a Chinese embassy or consulate.

Trade Arabia | Related China requires negative Covid-19 tests for all arriving air passengers – Business Traveller



Government Approves Taiwan-Centric China Airlines Rebrand

A debate that began 10 years ago has gained enough momentum in recent months to lead Taiwan’s parliament to approve an airline rebrand for China Airlines. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, China Airlines' medical cargo flights were mistakenly thought to be coming from mainland China. Outraged Taiwanese citizens launched an online petition, which has compiled over 50,000 signatures to date, demanding a name change to avoid any further confusion. Government officials added that the name of the Taipei-based carrier is easily confused with Air China. While mainland China and Taiwan have been governed separately for over 60 years, China considers Taiwan to be an integral part of its territory.  

CNN | Related Virus Outbreak: Groups push for nation’s name change to Taiwan – Taipei Times



Boeing Presents Airbag Concept for 777X Premium Seats

The FAA is soliciting feedback on a design for structure-mounted airbags submitted by Boeing. The proposal mirrors automotive airbag design; airbags will deploy from furniture located in front of the passenger to form a barrier between the structure and the occupant. Typically, aircraft seats are spaced closely together and, in the event of an incident, the passenger’s head strikes the seat in front of them quickly enough to prevent severe whiplash. With more spaced-out seating arrangements in premium classes, structure-mounted airbags are seen as a more comfortable alternative to inflatable lap belts.

Paxex.Aero | Related Special Conditions: Boeing Model 787-9 Airplane; Structure-Mounted Airbags – Federal Register



American, Southwest Reveal Q2 Revenue Declines

American Airlines and Southwest Airlines reported their Q2 financials today. American saw revenue decline by 86% year-on-year and losses totalling $2 billion. CEO Doug Parker echoed a sentiment shared by United yesterday, saying it was one of the most challenging periods in the history of the company. Its cash burn was reduced by 70% to $30 million in June. The airline expects to have a surplus of 20,000 employees this fall. Revenue at Southwest declined 83% year-on-year, resulting in an overall loss of $915 million. “We expect air travel demand to remain depressed until a vaccine or therapeutics are available to combat the infection and spread of COVID-19,” said CEO Gary Kelly.

Air Insight | Related Southwest Reports $915 Million Second-Quarter Loss – Travel Pulse



Paradies Lagardère Restaurants Add Grab’s Digital Capabilities

Grab is growing thanks to an expanded partnership that will see its technology incorporated at over 100 Paradies Lagardère dining locations over the next several months to encourage social distancing. Travelers will be able to order food in advance using a smartphone, and virtual kiosks will be incorporated into both quick-service and full-service restaurants with to-go stations. Full-service restaurants will feature digital menus, ordering and payment as well. Paradies Lagardère has partnered with Grab for five years. “Our vision is aligned in leveraging technology to enhance – but importantly not replace – hospitality and provide guests the opportunity to self-service,” said Grab chief experience officer Jeff Livney.

Moodie Davitt Report | Related Grab partners with AtYourGate to enable end-to-end contactless airport ordering and delivery experience – At Your Gate



Inmarsat Extends Free Wi-Fi Offer for Deutsche Telekom Customers

Inmarsat is offering free in-flight Wi-Fi to Deutsche Telekom residential customers flying on European flights operated by Lufthansa Group. The offer, originally introduced in April, has been extended until the end of 2021. Passengers can either log in to the connectivity service manually (via the airline’s portal) or through Deutsche Telekom’s Connect App. Inmarsat partnered with Deutsche Telekom to increase in-flight connectivity take-up rates for airline customers through easier access and lower pricing.

Inmarsat | Related Could Connectivity Installations Deliver Environmental Benefits? – APEX Media



Eastar Takeover by Jeju Falls Through

Jeju Air, South Korea’s largest low-cost carrier, is abandoning a deal it had laid out in March to acquire 51% of Eastar Jet for $45 million. “Despite the government’s willingness to support and mediate, the level of uncertainty facing Jeju Air was too high to move forward with the acquisition,” the airline said in a statement. Nearly 2,000 jobs are now on the line at Eastar. The airline is accusing Jeju of breaching its agreement, suggesting a legal battle is in the cards. In recent weeks, Jeju criticized Eastar for “not being diligent” about meeting prerequisites, including clearing its debt.

Korea Herald | Related Jeju Air warns it can terminate M&A deal with Eastar Jet this week – Pulse News





Delta Boeing 737 ready to depart from Los Angeles to Seattle. Captured by @dpaviation (via Instagram).

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

> Tweet of the Day

Sabre’s APAC Travel Sentiment Survey reveals 6 key findings that the #travel #industry can leverage for #Covid19 recovery

Sabre APAC @Sabre_APAC


Association News

VIDEO: FTE APEX Virtual Expo Hosts Reveal Their Vision for the Event

On tomorrow’s episode of the APEX Weekly Wrap, founder of Future Travel Experience Dan Coleman and APEX/IFSA CEO Dr. Joe Leader disclose their plans for the newly announced FTE APEX Virtual Expo. We also bid farewell to the iconic Boeing 747, explore further eco-friendly developments in commercial aviation; and discuss the news that Global Eagle has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Subscribe to the APEX YouTube channel and watch previous episodes.


APEX Contributes to Traveler Confidence Article by Voice of America

APEX/IFSA CEO Dr. Joe Leader was interviewed for a recent piece by Deborah Block for international news organization Voice of America. In the article, Leader discusses how traveler confidence is increasing in the United States. The story also features insights from Bill Lentsch, chief customer experience officer at Delta Air Lines, and aviation analyst Seth Kaplan, as well as anecdotes from recent flyers.


> Quote of the Day

“The algorithms are optimized to show the right product, to the right customer, at the right time to ensure highest likelihood to purchase.”

Pramod Jain, Plusgrade
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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