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January 21, 2022

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Airbus Walks Away from Qatar Airways' A321neo Order

Airbus has canceled Qatar Airways’ 50-strong A321neo order. The first was due to be delivered in February 2023, with the carrier planning to deploy the type across new markets. Qatar Airways claims Airbus isn’t entitled to declare a “cross-default” on the basis of the airline’s refusal to take delivery of more A350s while the pair resolve issues regarding surface erosion that led Qatar Airways to ground some of its A350 fleet. A procedural hearing for Qatar Airways’ claim for over $600 million in compensation for its A350 problems has been scheduled for the week of April 26 in London.  

Reuters | Related Qatar Airways vs Airbus: Court date set for late April – City A.M.

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ITA Airways Opens Two Italian Lounges, Partners with PressReader

ITA Airways has opened lounges at Rome Fiumicino and Milan Linate airports for business-class passengers, Premium and Executive members of its loyalty program and Elite Plus SkyTeam members flying on its network. The Rome Fiumicino lounge has a 200-person capacity and features bookable private meeting rooms and a kid’s lounge. The Milan Linate lounge has 54 seats. Both feature light blue tones matching ITA Airways’ livery. The carrier has also partnered with PressReader to offer complimentary access to newspapers and magazines via passengers’ personal devices. 

Future Travel Experience | Related Lufthansa looks to acquire major stake in ITA Airways – Business Traveller

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Aerkomm to Develop Tile Antenna Under New Joint Venture

Aerkomm has entered into a joint venture agreement with Sakai Display Products Corporation (SDPJ) and PanelSemi to develop and commercialize a tile antenna. The joint venture will be operated through Newco, a California-based corporation owned by SDPJ. Upon approval of a proof of concept (POC) for the tile antenna, Aerkomm will contribute the intellectual property to Newco in exchange for 52% of the equity interest in the company. SDPJ will hold 45% of the equity interest and PanelSemi will hold the remaining 3%. If a POC is not achieved within 11 months, the joint venture will be terminated.

Market Screener | Related Aerkomm taps ThinKom and Kontron as partners for new Ka IFC system – Runway Girl Network

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FlyersRights.org Petitions FAA to Introduce Minimum Seat Size

FlyersRights.org has filed a petition in the US Court of Appeals to order the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to issue minimum seat size standards. The FAA currently has no standard for a minimum seat pitch or seat width, and FlyersRights.org believes ever-smaller seats and increasing passenger size poses health and safety and risks. The FAA denied rulemaking petitions made by the organization in 2015 and again in 2018, but a 2020 report from The Department of Transportation Office of the Inspector General has concluded that the information upon which the FAA based its second denial was false and inaccurate.

PR Newswire | Related Airlines’ Seat Pitch Gets Shorter And Passengers Reach Their Limits – Forbes

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British Airways Announces Four New Senior Hires

British Airways has appointed four new leaders to its management committee as a part of a new business and recovery strategy following the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Calum Laming has become the airline’s director of Business Recovery and is set to start in April, while Michelle Lydon will fill the role of chief people officer from next month. Colm Lacy and Tom Stevens have been confirmed in their positions as chief commercial officer and director of Brand and Customer Experience, respectively. They had been appointed on an interim basis throughout the pandemic.

British Airways | Related BA & Virgin Atlantic Will Make Face Masks Mandatory Despite No Longer Being Law From Next Week – Paddle Your Own Kanoo

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Swissport to Open Asia’s First Aspire Lounge This Summer

Swissport will open Asia’s first Aspire lounge at Narita International Airport’s Terminal 2 this summer. The lounge will be inspired by the nature and traditions of Japan and will feature a fully equipped relaxation room, office space and showers. It will have  capacity for up to 148 guests and promote calm with large windows allowing extensive natural light, aromatic oils, plants and nature sounds throughout. The aim is to help travelers find their “wagaya,” a Japanese word meaning “one’s own home.” In 2021, Swissport acquired No1 Lounges and now operates 60 lounges at 35 airports worldwide.

Passenger Terminal Today | Related Swissport Appoints Nadia Kaddouri as New Chief Strategy and Sustainability Officer – Aviation Pros

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Smart Trolleys Boost Engagement at San Diego Airport

Smart trolleys from Intelligent Track Systems (ITS) are boosting traveler engagement with retail and services at San Diego International Airport. Using an ITS-programmed tablet activated by passengers scanning their boarding passes, the trolleys provide users with airport information, departure times and gates, and retail offers. According to direct interviews, 90% of passengers said the trolleys made the shopping and wayfinding easier, while 29% said the digital ads featured on the carts convinced them to buy products. Furthermore, 94% of passengers said they would use the carts again.

Moodie Davitt Report | Related Ford International launches grant scheme to encourage tech-sector growth – International Airport Review

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> PHOTO OF THE DAY

 
 

An Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-900ER in Anchorage. Captured by @plane_spotter350

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

 
 

> Tweet of the Day

There’s one crabby pilot in California today >>> https://flightradar24.com/data/aircraft/n328vr#2a8c8fc5

Flightradar24 @flightradar24

 
 
 
 
 

> Quote of the Day

"Swissport is delighted to bring its award-winning lounge business to Japan, and we look forward to providing the ultimate experience for our guests."

Brad Moore, Swissport
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Until next week

 
 

ABOUT APEX

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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