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October 30, 2023



Today's Top Stories


JetBlue Asks US To Ban KLM From JFK If Schiphol Curbs Take Effect

JetBlue has requested the US Department of Transportation to prohibit KLM from operating at New York’s JFK International Airport in response to potential Schiphol Airport restrictions, alleging a breach of the US-EU Air Transport Agreement. The Dutch government’s plan to limit flights at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport to 452,500 annually, a reduction from 2019 figures, has been contested by KLM and industry associations. JetBlue warned against potential ripple effects and previously filed a complaint over the issue. KLM expressed concerns about potential global connectivity implications.

Reuters | Related JetBlue urges DOT ‘countermeasures’ against KLM over potential Schiphol slot losses – Flight Global



Emirates Launches Meal Pre-Ordering Service For 92 Destinations

Emirates has launched a meal pre-ordering service across 92 global routes, encompassing 30 new destinations like Riyadh, Delhi, and Kuala Lumpur. Over 10,000 pre-orders have been served on 3,000+ flights. Business Class passengers can order main courses 14 days to 24 hours before flying. The favored dishes include pan-fried beef tenderloin, grilled beef tenderloin, and Suffolk roasted chicken. The top breakfast pick is cheddar cheese and chive omelette. Passengers can view the menu on Emirates’ website or app, and choose from a selection of regionally inspired dishes.

Inflight | Related Emirates continues to expand its Business Class Meal Pre-Ordering offering – Economy Class & Beyond



Gatwick Outlines Raft Of New F&B Openings

Gatwick Airport is set to introduce multiple new food and beverage outlets. London’s Black Sheep Coffee is opening stores in both terminals before Christmas, with other global outlets including the upcoming one in Dallas. Krispy Kreme is launching its first Gatwick store in the North Terminal. BrewDog will open its second airport location in the North Terminal, following its Edinburgh airport site. The South Terminal’s Giraffe World Kitchen is expanding, providing 60 extra covers and a new bar. This year, the South Terminal also introduced Vagabond Bar & Kitchen and South Downs Sparkling Wine Bar.

Business Traveller | Related Gatwick promotes local produce – Airports International



Stelia Takes Focussed Approach To Perceived Seat Quality

In the business class seat market, quality issues are amplified by industry consolidation and intricate, customised designs. Problems like color mismatches have driven smarter design decisions. Stelia Aerospace addresses these challenges by focusing on perceived quality, ensuring the end product meets airlines’ initial visions. Discrepancies often arise between design and various review stages, with each airline having unique concerns. Stelia uses a comprehensive perceived quality tool with over 900 checkpoints to maintain alignment with customer expectations. With fewer airlines and seat manufacturers, such strategies become essential in delivering quality products.

Runway Girl Network | Related Airbus and Stelia show off new C Suite ultra-compact narrowbody seat – Runway Girl Network



Thai Airways Unveils Sustainable Cabin Crew Uniform

Thai Airways has introduced a sustainable version of its iconic pink and purple cabin crew uniform. The new attire, made from a blend of recycled materials and Thai silk, is part of the airline’s “From Purple to Purpose” initiative, aligned with its Zero Waste living project. The uniform, which merges national identity with sustainable development, will debut on January 1, 2024. As part of its green push, Thai Airways aims for net-zero emissions by 2050 and has committed to various environmental initiatives.

Simple Flying | Related Bangkok Airways Launches Upcycled Uniforms Amid Net Zero Goals – Simple Flying



Swoop Ends Flights, Integrated Into WestJet

WestJet has completed the integration of its low-cost subsidiary, Swoop, into its main operations as of October 28, 2023. Launched in 2018 to compete with other ultra low-cost carriers, Calgary-based Swoop had a fleet of 16 Boeing 737s. Swoop’s branding will still be visible as aircraft and airport brandings won’t be updated immediately. The decision to discontinue Swoop was influenced by labor group concerns over the subsidiary's lower employee pay. Integrating Swoop results in a unified pay scale for pilots, addressing concerns that arose during contract negotiations with WestJet pilots.

One Mile At A Time | Related Canada’s WestJet Group clarifies integration timelines – ch-aviation



Liberty Defense Receives TSA Funding To Upgrade Passenger Screening Technology

The TSA has provided additional funds to Liberty Defense for enhancing the High-Definition Advanced Imaging Technology (HD-AIT) upgrade kit, which will be tested on an Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) passenger screening system. HD-AIT utilizes high-definition imaging and AI for threat detection. Liberty’s upgrade kit is designed to improve existing AIT units using an open architecture system for compatibility with third-party components. Liberty’s CEO, Bill Frain, emphasized the kit’s focus on enhancing threat detection and traveler experience. In other news, Liberty Defense granted stock options and restricted share units to certain company directors and officers.

Passenger Terminal Today | Related Charlotte Douglas Airport unveils security checkpoint – Passenger Terminal Today




Today’s picture comes from @southbay_dan_aviation, featuring a Virgin Atlantic A350-100 aircraft.

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> Tweet of the Day

APEX/ @IFSAOnBoard CEO Dr. Joe Leader comments on @united ’s revamped boarding plan. The boarding procedure, known as WILMA, will save up to two minutes of boarding time. Read more: http://bit.ly/3QwGxHF @Suntimes #PaxEx #Aviation

APEX @theAPEXassoc


Association News

Call for APEX TECH Panelist & Moderator Nominations

The Technology Committee is seeking speakers and ‎facilitators for the APEX TECH taking place 28-29 February ‎‎2024 in Los Angeles, California, USA.‎ Speaker, panelist, and moderator nominations are being accepted now and will be curated by the ‎Technology Committee. Self-nominations are also welcome.‎ The deadline for nominations is Wednesday 1 November 2023.‎ Click here to learn more and submit your nomination.


Register for FTE APEX Asia Expo – Preparing for Tomorrow’s World

FTE APEX Asia Expo, 8-9 November 2023, at the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre in Singapore, is the largest free-to-attend passenger experience and business performance expo for the air transport industry. It will provide a unique platform for the industry's most innovative suppliers from across Asia and further afield to come together to showcase their latest products, services and solutions designed to help airlines improve end-to-end customer experiences, reduce costs, increase revenues, and enhance sustainability and operational efficiency. The networking and business development opportunities are immense, and our AI matchmaking app, powered by Swapcard, provides incredible access to the most progressive companies in the industry, with whom you can connect to help redefine your organization’s passenger experience and business performance strategies. Learn more and register.


> Quote of the Day

“If the Dutch Government is allowed to effectively expel new entrant JetBlue from AMS without facing any consequential and proportional countermeasures from the Department, other governments may decide to follow suit.”

jetBlue statement
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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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