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January 20, 2021



Today's Top Stories


Biden to Block Trump’s Order to Lift US Travel Restrictions

On Monday, Donald Trump signed an executive order to end travel restrictions on Europe from January 26, instead requiring passengers to present proof of a negative COVID test to enter the US. However, Joe Biden’s administration has said it plans to retain coronavirus travel restrictions on much of Europe, the UK and Brazil beyond this date. “With the pandemic worsening, and more contagious variants emerging around the world, this is not the time to be lifting restrictions on international travel,” said Biden’s spokesperson Jen Psaki on Twitter. “We plan to strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of Covid-19.”

The Guardian | Related Legacy Of President Trump's Travel Ban Will Be Hard For Biden To Erase – NPR



IAG Agrees to Acquire Air Europa for €500 Million

International Airlines Group (IAG) is to acquire Air Europa from Globalia for €500 million, half of the €1 billion it initially agreed to pay in November 2019. The deal will be completed through IAG subsidiary Iberia and is hoped to take place in the second half of this year, but payment will be deferred until the sixth anniversary of the completion to allow IAG to recover from the knock-on effects of the coronavirus pandemic. “Being part of a large group is the best guarantee to overcome current market challenges which will also benefit Air Europa once the transaction is completed,” said IAG’s chief executive, Luis Gallego. The group expects the acquisition to strengthen its Madrid hub, allowing it to compete with Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Paris Charles de Gaulle. 

Breaking Travel News | Related IAG Brexit Plans – International Airlines Group



Carebook myVitals App Could Help Passengers Monitor Their Health

Canada-based Carebook, a new member of APEX, has developed a smartphone app with Montreal’s Jewish General Hospital. Available on both iOS & Android mobile devices, the Carebook myVitals App gives users a clearer understanding of two major vital signs, which could be useful not just for general health purposes, but also for travelers before or during a trip. “We’ve also had discussions on how the in-flight entertainment system can play a key role in this experience…[by] providing additional health and wellness support and recommendations,” said Nick Clements, Carebook’s VP Marketing.

APEX Media | Related Etihad One of First Airlines To Launch IATA Travel Pass – TravelPulse



ATPCO Acquires SITA’s Airfare Insight Fare Management System

With its acquisition of SITA’s Airfare Insight (AFI) fare management system, ATPCO will consolidate the expertise and market reach of both companies in a move that it believes will be beneficial to SITA AFI employees, customers and the industry at large. AFI will be integrated into ATPCO’s “Architect” pricing tool, which was announced last November. Through 2021, SITA will continue to operate AFI and work with ATPCO to transition its existing customers, including Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Virgin Atlantic and Xiamen Air, over to Architect. “Industry consolidation and simplification is in the best interest of all,” said Alex Zoghlin, ATPCO’s CEO.

ATPCO | Related ATPCO unveils Architect, a powerful new pricing tool – TravelDailyNews International



Air China Orders Touchscreens From Wetouch

Air China has placed an order with Wetouch Technology Inc. for its touchscreen products. The company passed a factory examination by Air China in June 2020. “We are very pleased with our inroads into the aviation market and honored to be selected as a supplier to Air China for their in-flight entertainment systems and self-service kiosks at airports,” said Guangde Cai, CEO and chairman of the Board of Directors, Wetouch. “We look forward to working closely with Air China and expanding our footprint in the aviation market to service other major airliners.” Wetouch predicts that its aviation-related business will add $5.4 million to its top line earnings in 2021.

Globe Newswire | Related Wetouch Touch Screen Enters The Aviation Market – WeTouch



Plaza Premium Lounge Revamp is Completed at Hyderabad Airport

The Plaza Premium Lounge at GMR Hyderabad International Airport has undergone a complete refurbishment, resulting in a sophisticated and modern space that can accommodate up to 222 passengers at a time. Located in the domestic departures area, the 773-square-meter lounge is open 24 hours and features views of the airport runway, private workstations, zonal music control, comfortable reclining seats, a VIP zone, areas for children and massage and wellness services provided according to strict health and safety guidance. A varied buffet will be presented at all hours and “live” cooking stations will enhance the food and beverage offering during peak times.  

Business Traveller | Related Plaza Premium Group and marhaba form partnership to expand lounges, services – Asian Aviation



Munich Airport Opens High-Tech Logistics Facility

A new 24,000-square-meter logistics center opened yesterday at Munich Airport to bring the warehousing capacities of the airport’s retail subsidiary, Eurotrade, catering subsidiary Allresto and Flughafen München GmbH under one roof. “We are delighted that we have completed the new logistics center on schedule despite the current difficult circumstances. This means that the airport will be ideally equipped to ensure that the entire flow of goods will be efficient and sustainable in future,” said Munich Airport’s CEO, Jost Lammers.

Munich Airport | Related Flights between Munich and Singapore to resume – Munich Airport





"The last few minutes of light." Captured by @pilotlucas (via Instagram).

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

> Tweet of the Day

Happy birthday, dear #A320neo! 🎂 You've been enriching our fleet for 5 years: on Jan 20, 2016, @airbus delivered the first neo to us. You're efficient & quiet, you have sharklets, the Zorro mask & you are our "Hauptstadtflieger". We're glad you exist! #spotter @prattandwhitney

Lufthansa News @lufthansaNews


Association News

Access US Stimulus Funds for Airline Contractors

Thanks to the efforts of APEX members, the COVID-19 relief provisions of the new stimulus bill include a total of $1B to enable the continuation of the Payroll Support Program for airline contractors. Applications received after 25 January are less likely to be considered, so apply as quickly as possible. Read the Treasury-issued streamlined guidelines and application procedures, and complete your application online.


> Quote of the Day

"We are currently working on two narrow-body business-class concepts for airlines with more in the pipeline, which is a clear indication of the demand in this segment."

Richard D’Cruze, JPA Design
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 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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