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January 18, 2024



Today's Top Stories


US Judge Blocks JetBlue’s $3.8 Billion Spirit Merger

A US judge has blocked JetBlue Airways’ proposed $3.8 billion merger with Spirit Airlines, siding with the Department of Justice (DoJ) in a decision that the deal would substantially reduce competition. JetBlue’s argument that the merger would allow for lower fares and better competition with major US airlines was unsuccessful. US Attorney General Merrick Garland hailed the ruling as a win for travelers who would have faced higher fares and limited choices. Both airlines are now considering their next steps and maintain that the merger would have increased competition.

Airport Technology | Related Failed JetBlue buyout leaves Spirit Airlines with a tough path forward - CNBC



Turkish Airlines’ All-New ‘Crystal’ Business Class Suite

Turkish Airlines is set to unveil a next-generation business class suite, a bespoke creation from its Turkish Cabin Interior (TCI) division, for its upcoming fleet of long-range Airbus A350 jets, including 15 A350-1000 series expected to fly non-stop from Istanbul to Australia. Dubbed the ‘Crystal’ seat design, it will likely feature in Turkish Airlines’ Boeing 777 fleet, replacing the current 2-3-2 layout. The new design promises direct aisle access and privacy for each passenger. Ahmet Bolat, the airline’s chairman, highlighted the intention to use TCI-manufactured seats to maximize space.

Executive Traveller | Related Turkish Airlines to Upgrade Boeing 777s with New Business Class - Business Traveler USA



Cathay Pacific Strengthens SAF Platform

Cathay Pacific Airways is advancing its sustainability efforts, aiming for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, through increased collaboration to decarbonize the aviation industry. In 2022, Cathay launched its Corporate Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) Programme, recently adding Dimerco Express Group, Yusen Logistics, and the Business Environment Council as new partners. These join earlier participants like AIA, Airport Authority Hong Kong, KWE, PwC China, Standard Chartered, and Swire Pacific. The partners are committed to reducing climate impact from business travel and airfreight through SAF use.

Business Traveller | Related Cathay Pacific welcomes 3 new partners to promote SAF uptake - AviationSource News



Chase Debuts New Airport Lounge

Chase has opened a luxurious two-story lounge in Terminal B at LaGuardia Airport, adjacent to the American Express and Centurion Lounge. The 21,800 square foot space boasts a welcoming design with sleek furniture, brushed gold sconces, greenery, local artwork, and comfortable seating areas. Key features include a large dining area with a rotunda bar, open kitchens serving hot and cold dishes, self-serve beverage stations with premium coffee and seasonal drinks, and the option for guests to order a la carte via QR codes at their tables.

ABC News | Related Chase Sapphire opens New York LaGuardia lounge - Business Traveller



Emirates Set To Reopen Brisbane Lounge

Emirates is set to reopen its Brisbane lounge after an extensive renovation, with an expected unveiling soon. While other Australian lounges in Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth reopened in July 2022, Brisbane’s lounge remained closed. It will now feature updated stylings similar to Melbourne and Perth, along with structural improvements like a new air conditioning system. The lounge serves travelers on Emirates’ two daily Brisbane-Dubai flights, including first and business class passengers and Skywards Gold and Platinum members, offering a buffet, unlimited Champagne, and direct boarding for the A380.

Executive Traveller | Related Emirates and Azul launch reciprocal loyalty programme - Business Traveller



TSA Deploys Security Systems Nationwide In Record Year

In 2023, the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) made significant technological advancements, deploying over 2,000 credential authentication technology (CAT) machines, including 457 CAT-2 units with facial recognition capabilities. Additionally, TSA updated an algorithm to enhance the accuracy of 1,000 advanced imaging technology units, decreasing false alarms and pat-downs. Collaborations with Apple, Google, Samsung, and the GET Mobile Driver’s License app improved the airport security experience for travelers from select states at 27 airports. TSA also partnered with American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines to evaluate facial recognition for identification and bag drops.

Passenger Terminal Today | Related Many airports adopt face biometrics for easier travel, but some see a blunt security tool - Biometric Update



Berlin Airport’s Terminals To Be Equipped With New Control Technology

As of January 1, 2024, Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH (FBB) has taken over the organization, control, implementation, and financing of aviation security checks at Berlin Airport (BER). This transition aims to enhance functional processes and reduce passenger wait times, while maintaining top priority for passenger and employee safety. BER is implementing advanced CT scanners, with five of eight already in use in Terminal 2, allowing passengers to keep liquids and electronics in their hand luggage. Plans for similar upgrades in Terminal 1 are underway.

International Airport Review | Related Berlin Brandenburg assumes responsibility for security controls and expands CT rollout - Passenger Terminal Today




Today’s picture comes from @pilotlucas, showing an Azul Airbus A320neo aircraft.

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

> Tweet of the Day

Arequipa airport is relatively small but it has everything that passengers may require, including a lounge. The only thing it doesn’t have: free WiFi. #AQP #airport #Peru #aviation #paxex

Today’s Flight @TodaysFlight


Association News

Shop the Online APEX Merchandise Store

It’s almost Valentine’s Day. Share the love by surprising your colleagues and team with thoughtful gifts from the APEX Store. It's the perfect way to express your appreciation and support for our wonderful APEX community. Start spreading the love – Start Shopping today!


APEX TECH | 28-29 February 2024 | Los Angeles, CA, USA

Come embark on a journey to explore the latest advancements and innovations in the world of Inflight Connectivity, Media Content and Supply Chain, Data Capture and Intelligence, and Ancillary and Passenger Experience Use. Join us at 2024 APEX TECH, 28-29 February, in Los Angeles, CA, and learn from and network with airlines and service providers. Registration is now open!


> Quote of the Day

“Today’s ruling is a victory for tens of millions of travellers who would have faced higher fares and fewer choices had the proposed merger between JetBlue and Spirit been allowed to move forward.”

US Attorney General Merrick Garland
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The next newsletter will be out 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 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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