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May 5, 2023



Today's Top Stories


United Airlines To Fuel SFO Flights With SAF

United Airlines is increasing its use of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) on flights at San Francisco International Airport, tripling its use of SAF in a year. The airline is “on track to use approximately 10 million gallons in 2023, nearly three times more than 2022 and close to 10 times more than 2019,” it said in a statement. The SAF is provided by Neste. According to company officials, United was the first airline to commit to net zero carbon emissions by 2050, without relying on traditional carbon offsets.

Flying Magazine | Related How United Airlines Will Triple Its SAF Usage This Year - Simple Flying



Etihad Is The Latest Airline To Embrace AI Chatbots

Etihad Airways will soon offer the option to book flights using artificial intelligence. The carrier has entered into a partnership with Astra Tech, to allow bookings to be made through the technology company’s chat app, BOTIM, a worldwide messaging and calling app. One of the services provided by the BOTIM app that Etihad Airways customers will be able to use is a generative pre-trained transformer, something that has grown in popularity since the launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

Simple Flying | Related Air India Announced it will be Using AI Chatbot ChatGPT - Analytics Insight



Vistara And Air India Itineraries Can Now Be Booked On A Single Ticket

Air India and Vistara passengers now have the flexibility to fly both airlines on a single ticket. The two carriers have announced an interline agreement that allows passengers to book mixed itineraries on a single ticket across both airlines. This is the latest in a series of steps being taken ahead of the eventual merger of the two TATA Group-owned carriers. Air India and Vistara operate at the same terminals at most major airports in India, allowing an easier on-ground travel experience for guests with interline itineraries.

Simple Flying | Related UAE’s Emirates, Etihad Airlines Expand Interline Cooperation - Reuters



AI Could Co-Pilot Planes, Reveals Emirates Airline President

With the rising sophistication of artificial intelligence (AI), airlines are exploring the possibility of computing prowess replacing at least one of the humans in the cockpit. Doing so would allow them to overcome crew shortages and lower expenditures. The big question, though, is whether passengers will agree. This might come as a shocker for most of us who have grown up seeing two pilots in the cockpit and even three for long-haul flights. However, for the airline industry, it is just the norm of reducing human dependencies as technology improves.

Interesting Engineering | Related Will Pilots Be Replaced By Robots Or AI? - Artificial Intelligence +



Qatar Airways Opens New Al Mourjan Business Lounge

Qatar Airways has opened the new Al Mourjan Business Lounge at Hamad International Airport named ‘The Garden’. The lounge offers uniquely-designed relaxation spaces and areas to socialize. The Garden stretches over an area of 7,390 square meters and can accommodate up to 707 passengers. It features 24 quiet spaces, each designed to offer optimum relaxation, available free of charge for the first six hours. It also features seven spa treatment rooms, and is available to passengers traveling in the Premium cabin.

Future Travel Experience | Related Qatar Airlines Unveiled Its New Lounge at Hamad International Airport - Thrillist



Starlux Airlines, A Swanky Startup Carrier Based In Taiwan, Is Now Flying Into LAX

Starlux Airlines, the Taipei-based boutique carrier, started its long-awaited Los Angeles service in April. The airline had hoped to expand to the US shortly after launching in 2020, but the plans were delayed due to the pandemic. The new Los Angeles-to-Taipei route is flown on Starlux’s four-cabin Airbus A350-900, featuring four seats in first class, 26 in business, 36 in premium economy, and 240 in economy. Both first and business class cabins are arranged in a reverse herringbone layout, with seats angled away from the aisle.

Condé Nast Traveler | Related Starlux Airlines departs for LAX, its first US destination - AeroTime



VINCI Airports To Enhance Sustainability With A Large Solar Power Plant At Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport

VINCI Airports will launch a 14-hectare solar power plant at Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport. This will be one of the largest shaded power plants in France, with a capacity of 20 MWp, and will produce 24 GWh of green electricity annually. The production will be injected into the grid, avoiding the emission of nearly 1,600 tons of CO2 per year. The project has been awarded to a consortium comprising Neoen and SunMind, which will design, finance, build and operate the plant until 2047.

Future Travel Experience | Related Gautam Solar Supplies High Efficiency Solar Panels To Power Bhopal Airport - Mint




Today’s picture comes from @_swiss_aviation_fanpage_, showing a SWISS Airbus A330 taking off from Zurich International Airport.

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

> Tweet of the Day

My breakfast this morning in UK 943. Tasty and well presented, supplemented with warm cinnamon rolls. As usual, service on @airvistara was just right. Let’s see what I get for dinner on my return flight tonight. #paxex #avgeek

Vishal Mehra @vishal1mehra


Association News


Future Travel Experience EMEA returns to the “Silicon Valley of Europe”, Dublin from 23-25 May, to become established as the region’s definitive end-to-end air transport innovation show with an atmosphere, energy and audience like no other. This high-level three-day event, focused on the art of scaling innovative ideas, is dedicated to new thinking and concepts, and combines an exhibition, extensive social activities, conference sessions, interactive workshops, pitch sessions and awards with turbo-charged networking. For more information, click here.


> Quote of the Day

“While 10 million gallons of SAF in 2023 represents a fraction of what we need, we have also made big investments in producers that are using everything from ethanol to algae, to CO2, to help increase our available future supply.”

United Chief Sustainability Officer Lauren Riley
Read the article


The next newsletter will be out on Monday.



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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