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May 21, 2021



Today's Top Stories


Passengers Willing to Pay for Tests Instead of Quarantine, says Study

A study undertaken by the Oxford Internet Institute that analyzed survey data from almost 600 passengers who took part in a voluntary COVID-19 testing trial conducted by American Airlines, British Airways and oneworld showed that 99.7% of travelers said they were happy to adhere to testing requirements as an alternative to quarantine after international travel and are prepared to pay for affordable testing. The majority of respondents said they were prepared to pay $50 or less for each test, while only 15% said they would pay more than $100. 

American Airlines | Related “Trust, Testing and Travel, Technology Use, Traveller Knowledge and Compliance with COVID-19 Health Rules” – Oxford Report



Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker Becomes oneworld Chairman

Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker is to succeed Qantas CEO Alan Joyce as chairman of the governing board of the oneworld Alliance. Joyce has been in the role since 2018. “I am honoured to have been chosen by my fellow board members to head the oneworld alliance governing board at a time when the industry is facing its biggest challenge,” commented Al Baker. He is the longest-serving CEO of a oneworld member airline, having taken on the job in 1997. Qatar Airways became a member of oneworld in October 2013.

oneworld | Related Oneworld Carriers Welcome Newest Member, Alaska Airlines – APEX Media



TAP Takes Off with Recaro’s SL3710 Seat

TAP Air Portugal’s latest Airbus A320 aircraft, which was delivered in April and is the first to feature Recaro Aircraft Seating’s SL3710 economy-class seat, has entered service. The carrier was heavily involved in the development of the seat, which weighs eight kilograms per passenger and features an ergonomic backrest. The SL3710 is integrated with the BL3710 model in a hybrid layout on the aircraft, and the two seats share spare parts to minimize maintenance downtime and cost. 

PAX International | Related RECARO Aircraft Seating reports 2020 financial results, maps out way forward – Recaro Aircraft Seating



Air Astana Receives Diamond-Level Health Safety Certification

Air Astana has received a Diamond-level certification following its audit as part of the APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying program. The carrier’s hospital-grade health safety measures include flight attendants changing their face masks every two hours. “This program provides a science-based evaluation to set industry standards. We are delighted to be the first airline in the CIS region to have achieved Diamond status, the highest level attainable,” said Margaret Phelan, Air Astana’s VP Inflight Services.

Air Astana | Related Video Clip: Dr. Joe Leader on relief bill and industry recovery – PAX International



ANA, JP Games to Create SKY WHALE Virtual Travel Platform

ANA and JP Games are developing an interactive virtual travel platform, SKY WHALE, with support from government tourism bureaus and related organizations in Japan and abroad. Scheduled to launch in 2022, SKY WHALE will consist of three digital worlds: Sky Park will allow users to explore virtual recreations of tourist attractions to encourage them to book the same real-life trip; Sky Mall is a virtual shopping experience that will enable the purchase of real-world artisanal items; and Sky Village will provide access to medical care, education, and government services in a virtual environment.




Coffee and Alcohol to Return on Southwest Flights

Southwest Airlines is to sell beer and red wine on flights between the US and Hawaii from June 24. Then, from July 14, it will reintroduce beer, red and white wine, vodka and whiskey for purchase on all flights over 251 miles. The airline recently brought back Coke, Diet Coke, 7 Up and water, having only served water on request since the onset of the pandemic. "Bringing back this level of beverage service allows Southwest to provide an enhanced on-board experience for customers traveling with us this summer,'' said Southwest in a statement.

USA Today | Related Alaska Airlines Restores Inflight Service, First Class Meals – One Mile at a Time



FTE APEX Virtual Expo: Women in Aviation Leadership Summit

Next week, BBC World News presenter Zeinab Badawi will lead an honest and fast-moving discussion with a panel of female industry leaders to ascertain their perspectives on the impact women are having on their organizations and the importance of equality in aviation. Badawi will also seek ideas from the panel regarding the recovery of air transport. In addition to being broadcast to premium passholders as part of the Auditorium Conference, the session will be shared in the Expo Conference & Engagement Zone, which is open to all FTE APEX Virtual Expo attendees.   

Future Travel Experience | Related Register for FTE APEX Virtual Expo





Courtland Savage (@savdapilot), founded Fly for the Culture to promote diversity in aviation.   

This week, we're looking back at illustrations by Felipe Vargas for the Travelogue feature in #APEXExperienceMag!

> Tweet of the Day

What's Scott Kirby's favorite book? How about advice he'd give to his 30-year-old self? I got to have a fun chat with him in a "rapid-fire round" when I interviewed him recently.

SimpliFlying @SimpliFlying


Association News

West Entertainment is Looking for an Account Manager

West Entertainment is looking for a positive and passionate Account Manager for the world of in-flight entertainment. You will support the Account Director in servicing one of the world’s leading airlines with their entertainment needs and ensuring their long-term success. Fluent Japanese language is preferred, but not essential. The position’s location is flexible, but service hours are JST (Japan Standard Time). To find out more, please email talent@westent.com.


> Quote of the Day

"“This really isn’t just another webinar."

Dan Coleman, Future Travel Experience
Read the article


Until next week



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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