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August 24, 2020



Today's Top Stories


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


No Consensus on US Contact Tracing; CDC Removes Quarantine Recommendation

In June, the US government formed an interagency group tasked with ironing out the details of a contact tracing plan for US-bound international flights. On Friday, officials familiar with the matter said that a plan was unlikely to be adopted this year. The CDC’s belief that airlines should collect tracing data was met with resistance from airlines, who preferred to implement a website or app that allows travelers to send data directly to government officials. Meanwhile, the CDC removed its blanket 14-day quarantine recommendation from its list of travel requirements for people returning home from interstate or international travel. Instead it advises travelers to "follow state, territorial, tribal and local recommendations or requirements after travel."

Travel Pulse | Related The CDC removes its 14-day quarantine recommendation – USA Today



APEX Weekly Wrap: First-Hand Account of Post-COVID Long-Haul Flight

In this episode, APEX Media director Maryann Simson details her first flying experience in six months, from London Heathrow to Toronto Pearson with Air Canada. Dan Bambridge from Neutral Digital joins the show to discuss how virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are being re-evaluated across the aviation industry in light of current events. Finally, the hosts consider Diehl Aviation’s latest announcement about providing Buyer-Furnished-Equipment on Boeing aircraft and the delivery of the first governmental Airbus A350 aircraft in Germany.




Airlines Increase Service as Demand Picks Up

Delta Air Lines is adding over 50 trans-oceanic flights to its schedule this winter and next summer. It will offer bolstered service to Asia from its Seattle hub, more flights to Tokyo, three weekly flights to Sydney and add several European destinations for travelers flying from JFK. In China, domestic travel numbers have climbed steadily since a COVID-19 outbreak in Beijing in June and now stand close to 2019 levels. Qatar Airways is resuming more global flights. It now operates more than 550 weekly flights to over 85 destinations across six continents. AirBaltic reported a 251% month-over-month passenger increase in July, its second full month of operations since COVID-19 grounded its fleet.

Travel Pulse | Related Chinese Domestic Services Almost Back To Pre-COVID Levels – Aviation Week



Qantas Consolidates Domestic and International Businesses, Lets Go of La Spina

Tino La Spina, CEO of Qantas International, will leave Qantas Group after 14 years with the company. Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said that at the end of the month, the company’s domestic and international business units will be consolidated and run exclusively by Andrew David, current CEO of Qantas Domestic. Rationalizing the decision, Joyce stated: “It’s increasingly clear that our international flights will be grounded until at least mid-2021 and it will take years for activity to return to what it was before.” The company is downsizing, planning to let go of 6000 employees in the next three years.

Business Traveller | Related Qantas taps investors for COVID-19 recovery plan – Sydney Morning Herald



Emirates Looks to Trade Some 777X Jets on Order for Dreamliners

Emirates has finalized a plan to swap a portion of the 115 Boeing 777X jets it is slated to receive for 787 Dreamliners, which seat 32% fewer passengers. The airline’s chief operating officer Adel Al Redha did not go into specifics and mentioned that negotiations are ongoing about the timing of the plane deliveries. Emirates currently has 30 Dreamliners on order. Deliveries for these and dozens of Airbus aircraft were originally scheduled for this year but were delayed. “We don’t want to dump capacity in the airline when the airline can’t absorb capacity,” Al Redha said.

Executive Traveller | Related Emirates to resume A380 services to London and Paris – Business Traveller



Tapis Releases Synthetic Leather for Cabin Dividers

Tapis announced the release of 9-series Ultraleather, a synthetic leather cover for cabin dividers made in partnership with Ultrafabrics. It is embedded with antimicrobial silver ion technology to neutralize airborne pathogens it comes into contact with. The company claims that the polycarbonate product is the only one on the market that meets flammability requirements for vertical surfaces. It was engineered to withstand extensive cleaning and fogging disinfectants without compromising its finish. Jamco America recently used the product on its cabin dividers, which were installed on American Airlines’ upgraded Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

Runway Girl Network | Related Aviation Week: Aircraft Interior Collaboration Combats COVID-19 Concerns – Tapis



FlyWell Releases Travel Wellness App Using PXCom Platform

Seeking to cater to airlines looking to integrate health and wellness content into their brand offering, FlyWell has made its TravelWell IFE channel content available as an app. The app includes content related to relaxation, nutrition and other topics relevant for air travel. The app was co-developed with PXCom and features the company’s targeted advertising platform along with opportunities for airlines to earn ancillary revenue via an in-app store. The service is offered as a white label standalone mobile app and can also be integrated into an existing app. TravelWell was first introduced at APEX EXPO 2018, as an IFE channel that could be accessed through seatback screens, on passengers’ personal devices or by using SkyLights’ AlloSky VR headset.

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





An American Airlines Boeing 777-300 leaves a rainbow-filled contrail in its wake. Captured in Chandler, Arizona by @jknapfel (via Instagram).

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

> Tweet of the Day

LX-VCF has received its very own mask on its iconic nose-door, reflecting the airline’s commitment to the fight against COVID-19. #notwithoutmymask #LXVCFacemask

Cargolux Airlines @Cargolux_Intl


Association News

EasyJet Commercial Director Calls FTE APEX Virtual Expo "A Great Logical Next Step"

“The FTE APEX team have done a brilliant job with their virtual pivot," said Andrew Middleton, commercial director, easyJet. "The FTE APEX Virtual Expo looks like a great logical next step." Read the full testimonial and register now for the FTE APEX Virtual Expo.


> Quote of the Day

“Inconsistency causes the industry to lose credibility in the eyes of the flying public.”

Blake Emery
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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