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July 24, 2020



Today's Top Stories


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


Airbus Hopes Latest Contract Amendments Put End to WTO Dispute

Airbus says it has abided by all requirements imposed by the World Trade Organization on its A350 repayable launch investment contracts, which stem from a 16-year legal battle. The airframer agreed with the governments of France and Spain to make amendments, including what the WTO considers the appropriate interest rate and risk assessment benchmarks. At the heart of the matter are European government loans and subsidies awarded to the planemaker. The WTO deemed them to be illegal and authorized US sanctions to be applied. Airbus says these tariffs have an especially severe impact during these challenging times.

Breaking Travel News | Related Scotch whisky caught up in airliners trade war – BBC



Southwest Vows to Avoid Furloughs and Benefit Cuts Through 2020

During Southwest’s Q2 earnings call, the company promised to avert layoffs, furloughs and benefit cuts of any kind for all its employees through the end of the year. Southwest executive director of Corporate Sales Bob Jordan explained that 27% of the airline’s workforce already agreed to an exit package or extended leave. Southwest ended the second quarter of this year with the strongest liquidity/cash burn ratio of the four largest US carriers. United and American airlines have already warned tens of thousands of employees that they are at risk of being furloughed once CARES Act funding expires at the end of September.  

Travel Weekly | Related Top US Airlines Plan Thousands of Layoffs When CARES Act Ban Expires – Truthout



US Airlines Reveal Stricter Mask Policies

While Delta Air Lines recently announced it would allow travelers with health conditions to board without a mask following a virtual health consultation, American, United and Southwest airlines have now confirmed they are not allowing anyone over the age of two to fly maskless. “Customers and team members have been clear that they feel more safe when everyone is wearing a face covering,” Alison Taylor, chief customer officer of American Airlines said in a statement. United is asking that travelers who believe their circumstances merit an exemption contact the airline beforehand. Delta CEO Ed Bastian claims the airline has already banned over 100 people for not wearing masks.

CN Traveler | Related Delta’s mask exemption process: It’s rigorous for everyone’s safety – Delta



APEX Weekly Wrap: Goodbye 747s, and Hello Virtual EXPO!

Today’s APEX Weekly Wrap takes a look at what filing for Chapter 11 will mean for Global Eagle’s future, how airlines are saying goodbye to their much-loved Boeing 747 aircraft and the new, environmentally friendly planes they’re making way for. FTE founder Dan Coleman and APEX/IFSA CEO Dr. Joe Leader join the show to discuss plans for the newly announced FTE APEX Virtual Expo, from the topics that will be focused on to the different activities that participants can expect.

APEX Media | Related Subscribe to the APEX Media YouTube Channel



[PHOTOS] Vistara Receives A321neo With Lie-Flat Beds

Vistara has taken delivery of its first Airbus A321neo, which is part of an order for 50 A320 models placed in 2018. Vistara claims to be the first South Asian airline to provide lie-flat beds on a narrowbody aircraft. The 12 business-class seats are complemented by 16-inch IFE screens. There are 188 seats in the aircraft, including 24 in premium economy and 152 in economy class. All seats feature four-way adjustable headrests and USB charging. In-flight Wi-Fi is offered at 3G speeds. The A321neo offers 20% greater fuel efficiency per seat.

Business Insider | Related Vistara receives first Boeing 787 – Flight Global



Nokia Launches Standalone 5G Solution for Enterprise

Enterprise customers including airlines now have the option of deploying standalone 5G private wireless infrastructure courtesy of Nokia. The network upgrade features lower latency and data rates suitable to meet the demands of cloud computing, robotics and autonomous machine operations. Lufthansa Technik is one of Nokia’s 30 launch customers, using 5G for remote engine parts inspection via a fast HD video link. Customers still have the option of signing up for 4.9G/LTE, an upgradable network that Raghav Sahgal, president of Nokia Enterprise said will continue to be the foremost private wireless solution for some time.

Globe Newswire | Related Nokia deploys 5G private wireless network for Lufthansa Technik virtual inspection trial – Nokia



Oneworld to Introduce Loyalty Points Cross-Spending

By late 2020, Oneworld aims to evaluate and develop a harmonized upgrade scheme that would enable loyalty points earned through a Oneworld airline to be spent on a seat upgrade for any other member airline. Star Alliance already offers this ability. Oneworld vice-president, Corporate Communications, Ghim-Lay Yeo, said the company has no definitive timeline for a potential rollout of the program. Currently, Oneworld offers the policy in specific cases where certain airlines have agreed to it.

Executive Traveller | Related Alaska Airlines will join Oneworld by the end of 2020 – Business Traveller





A Wamos Boeing 747 in from Honolulu, originally chartered to rescue stranded cruise ship passengers in March. Captured at Gatwick Airport by @prmpaul (via Instagram).

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> Tweet of the Day

Good news! We like to make your life easier 😀 You can now use @itsmeDigitalID - a secure digital identity service - to book and manage your flights. No longer need to fill in your personal data every time you log in, with Itsme once is enough 😉 #AirBelgium #SimplyFlyAway

Air Belgium @Airbelgium


Association News

Viva Air Labs Founder Excited About Engagement FTE APEX Virtual Expo Will Generate

“This industry needs a major virtual trade show this year," said Clyde Hutchinson, partner, Journey Partners and founder, Viva Air Labs. "I look forward to being involved, and to all the engagement and announcements I know that FTE APEX Virtual Expo will generate.” Read the full testimonial and learn more about the industry’s first major digital trade show.


> Quote of the Day

“Inflight Dublin believes any ancillary service must be mutually beneficial for the airline and its passenger to ensure it is a success.”

Jane Boland, Inflight Dublin
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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