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March 17, 2021



Today's Top Stories


JetBlue Introduces CommonPass on Flights to Aruba

Passengers flying from Boston Logan to Aruba’s Queen Beatrix airport can now enter Aruba using the CommonPass platform. They must take a PCR test using one of JetBlue’s testing partners and download the CommonPass app ahead of their flight. Upon arrival, CommonPass users will have access to dedicated immigration lanes. In the coming weeks, JetBlue will roll out CommonPass on flights to Aruba from cities throughout its network, and more testing facilities will be added to the CommonPass app. Aruba is the first government to adopt the platform to streamline entry into the nation.

JetBlue investor relations | Related Airports And Leading Airlines Join CommonTrust Network And Begin Roll-out In December – PR Newswire



DCA Explores UV-C Disinfection of Checkpoint Bins

The TSA is evaluating two UV-C bin disinfecting units at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) in an effort to provide safer checkpoint experiences for passengers and to limit the spread of COVID-19. “We employ a scientific methodology and fully assess the costs and benefits of each potential technology,” said Melissa Conley, who runs the TSA’s Innovation Task Force. To that end, the TSA used digital and sticker dosimeters placed on the bins to evaluate UV-C dosage, safety and processing times in a lab environment.

tsa | Related What is the TSA Innovation Task Force? ­– YouTube



Cathay Faces US Restrictions, Continues Testing Digital Health Passports

The US Department of Transportation (DOT) is considering placing restrictions on Cathay Pacific flights in retaliation to Hong Kong’s quarantine rules, which recently forced the relocation of 180 FedEx pilots. The DOT believes the measures are denying “fair and equal opportunity” to US airlines. In other news, on March 15, the carrier completed a trial of the CommonPass app with pilots and cabin crew on flight CX880 from Hong Kong to Los Angeles, in partnership with Airport Authority Hong Kong and Prenetics. The airline tested the technology with the same partners on a flight between Hong Kong and Singapore last year.

south china morning post | Related Cathay Pacific pursues the adoption of digital travel passes to facilitate international travel – Cathay Pacific



Making Airline Retail Strategies More Passenger-Centric

José Lirio Silva, who has been with Retail in Motion GmbH (RiM) for seven years, reveals how a humanized retail strategy is the key to a robust ROI and customer loyalty in an exclusive Q&A. “By offering travelers a broader selection of products from brands they already trust, airlines have the opportunity to improve satisfaction rates and pave the way for passenger centricity,” said Silva. Once an airline has a clearly defined value proposition, they should find a retail brand that enhances it. “By doing this, airlines can leverage their distinct position and use in-flight services to deliver on their promise of quality and choice,” explained Silva, pointing to RiM’s “Swiss Saveurs” program with SWISS as an example.

APEX Media | Related In the Hot Seat – APEX Media



AA Expands Touchless Technology at Airports

More American Airlines (AA) touchless bag drop terminals will be installed at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW). The kiosks allow travelers to process luggage without the need to present physical documents. This technology will also be introduced on entry to the DFW Admirals Club lounge. In the coming weeks, AA will also launch mobile ordering in select lounges. Julie Rath, AA’s vice-president Customer Experience and Reservations, said the new initiatives were devised during the quiet days of the pandemic. “We’re ready to welcome customers back onboard with thoughtful, touchless technology that puts more control in their hands and makes their journeys more comfortable.”

American Airlines | Related DFW Plans to Renovate One of Its Original Terminals While New Sixth Terminal is on Hold – Aviation Pros



EHang Designs Vertiport, Eyes Ecotourism Expansion

Autonomous air taxi company EHang partnered with an Italian architecture firm to design an ecological vertiport, which it will erect in Italy to serve as a tourist hub. Its design is inspired by the baobab tree. The 100-foot-tall steel and wood structure features a waiting room, restaurant and solar panels that can generate over 300 KW of electricity per day to charge the aircraft. EHang plans to expand its eco-tourism offerings in Europe and Southeast Asia.

EHang | Related China’s EHang announces “world’s first air taxi terminal” for Hezhou – Global Construction Review



Caeli Nova Creates Emergency Oxygen System Upgrade

Cordillera, a new cabin emergency oxygen system for commercial and military passenger aircraft, is set to be delivered to customers by the end of the year. Created using oxygenation company Caeli Nova’s patented breathing technology, Cordillera allows aircraft to descend to 21,000 feet instead of 10,000 feet in the event of cabin decompression, which is safer. It also permits airlines to plan more direct routes over high terrain airways like those found in the Himalayas, which cuts flight time and fuel consumption. Cordillera is also lighter than the equipment it replaces.

aviation business news | Related our first product – Caeli Nova





"Have you been to Southern Spain? It took some motivation to get up early during my holiday, but it was worth it!" Captured at Casares by @nick_skeyes (via Instagram).

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

> Tweet of the Day

Somewhere over the runway 🌈 A very Happy #StPatricksDay from all of us ☘️

Aer Lingus @AerLingus


Association News

APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying in the News

Today, Travel Weekly highlighted the APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying audit in its article about how industry bodies are creating certification programs to reassure airline passengers post-COVID-19. Contact info@apex.aero to find out how to begin your health safety audit without charge. We aim to bring every airline possible up to Gold-standard health safety or higher. For the latest news and information, view the APEX press release, read the APEX Media news article or watch the PAX interview.


> Quote of the Day

"We’re thrilled to see our latest and greatest programming on aircraft, welcoming travelers back to the sky."

Isabella Del Grande, ABC Commercial
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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