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February 13, 2024



Today's Top Stories


Joanna Geraghty Takes Over JetBlue, Becomes First Female US Airline CEO

Joanna Geraghty has become the first female CEO of a US airline as she takes the helm at JetBlue, facing significant operational and financial challenges. Under her leadership, JetBlue, which ranked ninth nationally with only 67% of its flights arriving on time from January to November 2023, aims to improve operational reliability and return to profitability. With almost 20 years at JetBlue, including roles as President and COO, Geraghty's extensive experience is expected to guide the airline through cutting unprofitable routes and focusing on premium leisure travel to boost yields, with profitability targeted for 2025.

Simple Flying | Related JetBlue resets with new CEO, industry veterans to run airline on time, and profitably – CNBC



US Senate Chair Wants Airline, Credit Card CEOs To Testify On Fees

Senator Dick Durbin, chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, has invited CEOs of American Airlines, United Airlines, Visa, and Mastercard to a hearing on April 9 to discuss credit card competition. Durbin accuses the airlines of opposing efforts to introduce competition in the credit card market, to protect profits they collect through their co-branded credit cards. He also highlighted the $93 billion in credit card fees charged in 2022. Durbin's proposed bill seeks to reduce fees and increase competition by mandating large credit card-issuing banks to offer a choice of processing networks for credit transactions.

Reuters | Related U.S. Senate Panel Investigates Airline Baggage and Seat Selection Fees – Skift



Love Is In The Air At Emirates For Valentine’s Day

Emirates is set to celebrate Valentine's Day on February 14, 2024, with special treats and offerings both onboard and in their lounges. Passengers will enjoy Valentine’s Day cakes and chocolates in the air, and pink desserts and rosé champagne in lounges. The airline's inflight entertainment system, 'ice,' will feature romantic movies and music. Exclusive onboard amenities include pink and red cupcakes, Dom Pérignon Rosé for First Class, Moët & Chandon Rosé Impérial for Business Class, and special gifts available for purchase through EmiratesRED. Lounge visitors in Dubai can indulge in passion fruit pavlova, lemon Valentine's verbena cake, and homemade ice creams. EmiratesRED also offers a US $15 discount on the purchase of two fragrances from luxury brands, with the option for pre-order and direct seat delivery inflight. Emirates Skywards members can earn miles on purchases through the Skywards Miles Mall in several countries.

Breitflyte | Related Emirates goes all red for Valentines Day – Economy Class & Beyond



ThinKom Invites Stellar Blu To Antenna Challenge

ThinKom has challenged Stellar Blu Solutions to a comparison of their Sidewinder and ThinKom's Ka1717 VICTS antennas, focused on drag and fuel burn advantages. The challenge arises from conflicting claims made in Inflight Magazine, where Stellar Blu highlighted the Sidewinder's drag and fuel efficiency, while ThinKom claimed superiority for its Ka1717 antenna. ThinKom proposes an independent aerodynamic analysis, promising a $10,000 donation to The Nature Conservancy, regardless of the outcome, aiming for transparency and informed decisions for airlines.

Runway Girl Network | Related Intelsat touts global ESA capabilities following historic flight tests – Runway Girl Network 



Qantas To Launch New A220 Jet

Qantas is set to unveil its Airbus A220 jet on February 22. This aircraft, aiming to redefine regional and domestic travel, features spacious cabins, new seating in business and economy classes, and inflight Wi-Fi, and will gradually replace the Boeing 717s. The launch event includes a special flight from Sydney to Uluru, celebrating Pitjantjatjara artist Maringka Baker's influence on the plane's livery. Initial routes include Canberra-Melbourne, with expansions planned. Notably, the A220 will lack seatback screens but offer Wi-Fi-based entertainment and Internet access.

Executive Traveller | Related Qantas Group takes delivery of its first A220 – Airbus 



iGA Istanbul Airport To Invest €656.5m Across 2024

iGA Istanbul Airport has announced a significant investment plan for 2024, aiming to spend €656.5 million on various projects, including a General Aviation Terminal, a vast solar power plant, and the Hilton Istanbul Airport. The solar plant alone, costing €146.4 million and covering 3,000,000m2, will enable the airport to be the world's first to fully meet its electricity needs from renewable energy. Additionally, the airport is expanding its cargo zone in collaboration with Trendyol and FedEx Express, aiming to boost its capacity and efficiency. With a passenger target of 85 million for 2024, iGA plans to introduce triple parallel runway operations, a first in Europe, significantly increasing its air traffic capacity. Committed to environmental sustainability, iGA aims for a 73% emission reduction by 2040 and net-zero emissions by 2050, already achieving a 14% reduction in emissions in 2023.

Passenger Terminal Today | Related iGA Istanbul Airport has declared 2024 the "Year of Investments" – Breaking Travel News



SITA Report Highlights Airlines & Airports Increasing CX Spend

The 2023 Air Transport IT Insights report by SITA reveals a significant increase in IT spending by airports and airlines, reaching US$10.8 billion and US$34.5 billion respectively, with expectations of continued growth into 2024. Investment priorities focus on biometric passenger journeys, operational efficiencies through data utilization, and sustainable solutions for energy and emissions. Over half of the sector has enhanced passenger processing efficiency, with a major push towards biometrics, expecting 70% of airlines and 90% of airports to adopt it by 2026. Additionally, leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning for operational insights is a key future strategy, with nearly all airlines and the majority of airports planning to invest in AI technologies by 2026 to tackle operational challenges.

Future Travel Experience | Related Airports' IT spend reached US$10.8bn in 2023, SITA's Air Transport IT Insights report finds – Passenger Terminal Today




Today's picture comes from @aydyn.aviation, showing a Southwest Airlines Boeing B737MAX-8 aircraft with the 'Imua One' livery.

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> Tweet of the Day

Love is in the Air at Emirates for Valentine’s Day https://breitflyte.com/post/love-is-in-the-air-at-emirates-for-valentine-s-day #FlyEmiratesFlyBetter #ValentinesDay #PaxEx #Breitflyte #avgeek #avgeeks #aviation #airlines

Breitflyte Airline News Network @breitflyte


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!


Delta Air Lines’ Ekrem Dimbiloglu to join us at APEX TECH

We’re delighted Ekrem Dimbiloglu will be joining us at APEX TECH. He is Delta Air Lines’ Managing Director of Customer Experience. Find out more about Ekrem’s work on Delta SYNC in this insightful interview he did with NPR.


> Quote of the Day

“As we operate in one of the most complex and challenging airspaces, operational reliability is foundational to all of our priorities, helping us deliver a better customer experience while also improving revenues with fewer refunds and disruption vouchers and better costs as we mitigate overtime and premium pay.”

JetBlue CEO Joanna Geraghty
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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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