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March 15, 2021



Today's Top Stories


ICAO Updates COVID-19 Recommendations

ICAO’s Aviation Recovery Task Force released updates to its restart guidelines today after approving six new COVID-19 recommendations and amending two others. The new points address the safe and efficient transport of vaccines on commercial flights, keeping crew licenses and accreditations valid, guidance on cross-border risk management and more. It also backs the WHO’s position, which specifies that proof of COVID-19 vaccination should not be made a condition for international travel.

travel daily news | Related 'Vaccine passports': Will they be available in the U.S. in time for summer? – NBC News



British Airways Develops COVID-19 Documentation Portal

Travelers on British Airways (BA) flights bound to India from London can upload negative COVID-19 test results and other travel declaration forms via the airline’s website, with more destinations and in-app functionality to follow. BA will certify the forms within six hours, and travelers can proceed with online check-in if the documents meet entry requirements. The system is designed to reduce airport queues. After acknowledging its trials of VeriFLY and IATA Travel Pass, BA’s CEO Sean Doyle said, “Now it’s also time to look at what we can offer through our own website.”

british airways | Related British Airways expands Verifly to all UK inbound international flights ­– Business Traveler



Wizz Air Fits Window Antenna System on A321

An Airbus A321 operated by Wizz Air now features the fflya system developed by AS-IP Tech, which uses Bluetooth to enable in-flight connectivity via two window antennas on either side of the aircraft. The service is provided by low-Earth Orbit Iridium Next satellites, which offer global coverage. The concept dates back to 2010, and was commercialized for the private jet market in 2016. Two years later, AS-IP conducted airline tests onboard an Airbus A340.

pr web | Related fflya system – AS-IP



Boeing Names New MAX Program Chief

Boeing’s current 737 MAX portfolio leader Walt Odisho is retiring, and the OEM has announced that vice-president and veteran engineer Ed Clark will fill the role. Clark is the fifth general manager of the 737 MAX program since 2018. He will lead the 737 manufacturing hub at Renton, Washington as part of his duties. Clark’s resume includes leadership roles at Southwest and Trans World Airlines. Boeing announced the change in a memo to employees on Friday, the same day investment firm 777 Partners ordered 24 737-8 aircraft and WestJet canceled 15 of its 42 MAX orders.

bnn bloomberg | Related Canada’s WestJet Cancels 15 Boeing 737 MAX Orders – Simple Flying



HeadZone Now Accommodates Multiple Aircraft Seat Designs

While HeadZone, Factorydesign’s lightweight, portable and eco-friendly passenger separation device, was initially created for use onboard short-haul flights, it can now be configured to fit long-haul aircraft seat designs with existing headrests. “Because the method of manufacture is cutting and folding, we have been able to develop a variety of solutions as to how HeadZone may fit,” explained Factorydesign’s director, Adrian Berry. He confirmed that several airlines are testing the product, which is being produced by Global Aviation Distribution.

APEX Media | Related 100 Solutions to Pandemic Problems, Part 4: Aircraft Interiors – APEX Media



Qatar Offering Diptyque Soaps and Lotions to Premium Travelers

Thanks to a partnership with amenity company Formia, Qatar is stocking its first- and business-class washrooms with a range of toiletries created by French fragrance brand Diptyque. The range includes hand lotions and soaps, face cream, shower gel, shampoo, conditioner and body lotion. The products will also be available in the airline’s lounges at Hamad International Airport and other hubs. “We are so excited to be introducing our premium passengers to a new and exclusive range of Diptyque toiletries that we hope will become a part of their lifestyles,” said Genevieve Rosario, Qatar Airways’ head of Product Development and Service Design.

Qatar Airways | Related Qatar Airways to roll out ‘Zero-Touch’ IFE technology – Future Travel Experience



Vanderlande Baggage Tracking Coming to Western Sydney Airport

Australia’s Urban Infrastructure minister Paul Fletcher said lost luggage “will be a thing of the past” for travelers at Western Sydney Airport after Vanderlande won the contract to operate baggage services. Bags will all be digitally tagged and traced, which means customers will be able to keep tabs on their luggage via an app. Travelers will be notified when their bags are ready to be retrieved. The 4,448-acre Western Sydney Airport is currently under construction and five years from completion.

9 news | Related Sydney’s Second Airport’s CEO Eyes Nonstop Flights To India – Simple Flying





"A shot I took almost 2 years ago already...time goes so fast!"

This week, we're featuring some of first officer Nick de Jonge's massively popular photos of Holland, his home country!

> Tweet of the Day

Aviation history is back in the skies today with our newest @airbus #A220 in a special commemorative Trans-Canada Air Lines (TCA) livery. Fin 119 left Mirabel on its maiden flight, the second aircraft to fly the historic TCA livery since 1997.

Air Canada @AirCanada


Association News

ICYMI: Michael Childers Explores How Hollywood is Affecting IFE

Michael Childers, a member of the APEX Board of Directors, recently wrote about the effect that shifts in the Hollywood business model are having on the in-flight entertainment industry. In his article, he asks: "Is the day nearing when airlines simply provide the pipe, and passengers provide their own early window content through direct-to-consumer subscriptions?" Read the piece in the latest issue of Aircraft Interiors International, now published online!


> Quote of the Day

"The patented technology is a highly visible addition to the passenger’s living space, delivering extra piece of mind about returning to flight."

Anthony Harcup, Teague
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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