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January 7, 2022



Today's Top Stories


Alaska Air Cuts 10% of January Flights Due to Staff Sickness

Alaska Air has cut 10% of its remaining January flight schedule due to staffing shortages caused by an “unprecedented” level of employees unable to work because of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. On Thursday, the carrier cut 120 flights, about 16% of its total, having already grounded nearly 15% of flights from December 24 through Wednesday. Yesterday also saw Southwest cancel one in five flights, accounting for almost a third of US flight cancellations, according to FlightAware. Southwest has extended its holiday bonus pay for flight attendants through January 25 to stabilize its operations.  

BNN Bloomberg | Related Southwest Airlines struggles with post-holiday flight cancellations – USA Today



Inmarsat’s I-6 F1 Satellite Begins EOR Process

After launching on December 22, 2021, Inmarsat’s I-6 F1 hybrid L- and Ka-band satellite has begun its electrical orbit raising (EOR) process to reach geostationary (GEO) orbit. The EOR process uses an all-electric propulsion system and is expected to take around 200 days. Once in its final position, the satellite will undergo testing before entering service in early 2023. Rajeev Suri, Inmarsat’s CEO, said, “I-6 F1 will play a crucial role in Inmarsat’s world-leading, dynamic mesh network ORCHESTRA,” which will combine GEO, highly elliptical orbit, low-Earth orbit and terrestrial 5G in one solution.

Inmarsat | Related  Inmarsat announces Orchestra network to provide satellite connectivity – Data Center Dynamics



Avelo Raises $42M in Second Round of Funding

Avelo Airlines has brought its total capital base to $160 million after raising an additional $42 million during a second funding round. The low-cost carrier, which launched last April, expects to double its destinations, increase its Boeing 737NG fleet from six to 15, and add 450 new crewmembers by the end of 2022. "This additional capital significantly bolsters our already strong balance sheet and enables the acceleration of Avelo's growth trajectory in 2022 and beyond," said the airline's CEO, Andrew Levy.

Travel Weekly | Related More efficient screening experience for Avelo Airlines passengers – International Airport Review



United Outlines Plans for Single-Aisle Polaris Product

United Airlines’ Airbus A321XLR aircraft, which are due to begin entering service in 2024, will feature a fully-flat Polaris business-class seat designed especially for the long-haul, single-aisle market. Patrick Quayle, United’s SVP International Network and Alliances, confirmed that the design will be based on United’s current Polaris product, which launched in 2016 and features on the carrier’s international fleet. The A321XLRs will accommodate approximately 180 passengers and also feature premium economy and economy-class products. They are set to replace United's Boeing 757s.

Executive Traveller | Related  Virgin Australia And United Airlines File For Codeshare Approvals – Simple Flying



Air Côte d’Ivoire Opts for Moment’s Wireless IFE Solution

Air Côte d’Ivoire is deploying Moment’s portable wireless in-flight entertainment (IFE) system, Flymingo Box, across its fleet of nine aircraft, including Airbus A320neos and A320s, and Bombardier Q400s. The service will provide passengers with access to films, music, radio, podcasts, digital books and more. It went live on select aircraft on December 24, 2021, and will be rolled out across Air Côte d’Ivoire's remaining jets by the end of the year. Dieudonné Kamaté, Moment’s director of Sales, said the Flymingo Box “allows the company to increase on-board satisfaction and loyalty.”

Moment | Related Fly Baghdad Launches Moment’s Wireless IFE Solution on Boeing 737NGs – APEX Media



Airport Dimensions and Ambaar Lounge Add Two Brazilian Locations

Airport Dimensions and VIP lounge operator Ambaar Lounge have opened two new locations in Brazilian airports. The New Ambaar Club-branded lounges are open to all travelers and offer a range of services. The lounge at Porto Alegre International Airport has a 170-passenger capacity and features a coffee bar, buffet and cocktail bar and interior design inspired by the Rio Grande do Sul area, while the lounge at Fortaleza International Airport lounge has a capacity of 108 and features a menu offering regional favourites and hammocks as a part of its design inspired by Brazil’s Ceara state.

The Moodie Davitt Report | Related Airport Dimensions names Ed Thorne as new Global Marketing Director – Moodie Davitt Report



ExxonMobil to Deliver Neste SAF at French Airports

ExxonMobil is to distribute Neste’s MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), which is produced from 100% renewable waste and residue raw materials such as animal fat waste and cooking oil, at France’s largest airports. During its life cycle, the fuel is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80% compared with fossil jet fuel. The agreement follows the introduction of the French Government’s 1% SAF mandate on January 1. “Our Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel is a drop-in solution that is readily available now,” said  Jonathan Wood, Neste Europe’s VP Renewable Aviation.

Airport Technology | Related Johnson Matthey launches HyCOgen technology for SAF production – Biodiesel Magazine





A United 787-9 getting ready to taxi for an overnight flight under an amazing Colorado sunset.  Captured by @planesoftherockies

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

> Tweet of the Day

Congrats to #IraqiAirways on receiving their first of five #A220 - we're proud to see the aircraft playing a key part in the airline's fleet renewal and modernization. Welcome to the A220 Family, Iraqi Airways! 🛫

Airbus @Airbus


Association News

Download the 2021 Airline Health Safety Yearbook

To celebrate their commitment to employees and passengers throughout COVID-19, SimpliFlying has created a free eBook containing interviews with 18 CEOs and senior leaders at airlines that have taken part in the APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying audit. Each participant discusses the most important thing they learned during the pandemic, new measures that most improved the passenger experience during this time and what they will focus on in 2022 and beyond. Download it now


> Quote of the Day

“With passenger numbers continuing to grow and demand for private and safe airport spaces also on the rise, Ambaar Club will offer moments of peace and relaxation.”

Nancy Knipp, Airport Dimensions
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 apex.aero 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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