Catherine Jestin as Executive Vice President Digital and Information Management, at Airbus

Catherine Jestin appointed as Airbus EVP Digital and Information Management

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Catherine Jestin as Executive Vice President Digital and Information Management, at Airbus

Airbus SE has appointed Catherine Jestin as Executive Vice President Digital and Information Management, effective 1 July 2021. Jestin currently holds the position of Chief Information Officer (CIO) at Airbus.

“This nomination comes at a time of particular importance for the digital transformation of Airbus, as we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis and prepare ourselves for the next phases in the development of our civil and military activities,” said Guillaume Faury. “The main focus of this new organisation will be to foster digital innovation across Airbus’ industrial ecosystem and our products and services portfolio, accelerating data analytics, artificial intelligence, automation and services for Airbus’ customers as well as digital security for the Company.”

Jestin will work to reinforce the transversal cooperation across Airbus functions company-wide in order to continue the successful deployment of the Digital Design, Manufacturing & Services (DDMS) programme, established to enable co-design capabilities and digital continuity system-wide. She will also leverage and coordinate digital talent pools across the organisation to support the wider transformation of Airbus’ ways of working through state-of-the-art digital tools, technologies and processes, while ensuring the Company is at the forefront of environmentally sustainable IT practices.

Ukrainian low-cost carrier SkyUp has updated its onboard menu, with the addition of new seasonal items.

SkyUp updates onboard menu

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Ukrainian low-cost carrier SkyUp has updated its onboard menu, with the addition of new seasonal items.

Ukrainian low-cost carrier SkyUp has updated its onboard menu, with the addition of new seasonal items.

A Strawberry Season SkyBox includes dorado and jamon with mango and chili puree sauce, a mix of salads with strawberries, peanuts, and feta cheese, and delicate Pine dessert.

We have added new seasonal items to the menu with strawberries and peaches. It will be available on the menu until 31 July.

The Peach Season SkyBox, available until 1 August, includes tender chicken rolls with pear and tomatoes with polenta, salad with grilled peach, Adyghe cheese, arugula, and fried hazelnuts, with a honey milfey for dessert.

In addition, the airline is also catering to Muslim passengers. The Muslim SkyBox includes tender pasta conciglioni with parmesan cheese and ricotta with spinach, cherry tomatoes, and thyme in cheese sauce, zucchini with hummus, yellow and red peppers, mozzarella and herbs, and caramel mousse for dessert.

Flexjet Embraer Preator 600

Flexjet chooses Viasat for in-flight connectivity services

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Flexjet Embraer Preator 600

Flexjet will become the first fractional operator to bring high-speed Ka-band connectivity to super-mid jets following a partnership with Viasat Inc.

Under the partnership Viasat will provide high-speed Ka-band IFC service on Flexjet’s Embraer Praetor 600 super-mid cabin fleet, which serves transatlantic and domestic European routes. Additionally, the partnership will provide Viasat’s Ku-band IFC service to Flexjet’s Bombardier Global and Gulfstream G450 and G650 aircraft with a path to transition these aircraft to Viasat’s Ka-band system in the future.

Installations of Viasat’s Ku-band system are being handled by maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) partner Constant Aviation.

“When we began evaluating IFC partners to improve our existing connectivity, it became clear that Viasat’s products and services would enhance it on more devices across more of our fleet—which will boost the value of our owners’ flight experiences,” said Flexjet Chief Operating Officer Megan Wolf. “We also appreciated their satellite roadmap—which would ensure the IFC investments we’re making today will meet the increasing data demands of tomorrow.”

“By working in close partnership with Flexjet, we tailored our solution so they could gain advantages from both our Ku- and Ka-band solutions,” said Claudio D’Amico, Viasat’s Business Area Director, Business Aviation. “We felt it was critical to work closely with Flexjet to create an IFC solution that was both economically sustainable and technically strong for their long-term commitment needs. We have confidence this deal will lead to a long-standing relationship that will continue to grow as we bring on more global capacity to serve more of Flexjet’s aircraft—in both Europe and the US.”

Avianor has completed and certified temporary cargo modifications on three Boeing 767 on behalf of Chile-based LATAM Cargo.

Avianor and LATAM Cargo in modification programme

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Avianor has completed and certified temporary cargo modifications on three Boeing 767 on behalf of Chile-based LATAM Cargo.

Avianor has completed and certified temporary cargo modifications on three Boeing 767s on behalf of Chile-based LATAM Cargo.

The seats have been completely removed from three planes for this purpose in order to have a payload of up to 46 tons per flight. Two of these planes are already operational. The third one is expected to be available in the second quarter of 2021.

Having previously worked together to perform cabin reconfiguration work on LATAM’s 767 & 777 aircraft, up to ten 767 will be permanently converted to cargo in the coming years.

LATAM will operate these aircrafts with Avianor’s Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) while it gets validated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Aircraft were modified at the beginning of 2021 at LATAM’s Santiago facilities. Avianor provided the materials and work instructions which were then completed with an official virtual walk through to confirm STC compliancy.

“We are proud to work jointly with LATAM Cargo on our first temporary cargo modification on the Boeing 767, an alternate and cost-effective solution to maintain operations and generate revenues. The payback is so short that it makes it the perfect solution. We aim to continuously support and respond to the needs of airlines around the world with our effective cargo conversion solution.” Marie-Christine Huberdeau, Interiors Sales Vice-President at Avianor.

“The implementation of Avianor’s temporary cargo modification was a rapid implementation, in less than 12 weeks we materialised three aircrafts. There was an excellent and collaborative teamwork that managed to reach the success, in such difficult times as a pandemic. All modified aircraft are in operation and without complications. The road is not yet finished, and we are still working together on improvements to cabin payload,” added Kamal Hadad, LATAM Cargo’s Network and Alliances Director.

the Electronic Cabin Bag (eCB) digitalises and automates cabin crew tasks while enabling passengers to use their personal electronic devices for in-flight shopping and service requests.

Collins Aerospace unveils new touchless in-flight solution

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the Electronic Cabin Bag (eCB) digitalises and automates cabin crew tasks while enabling passengers to use their personal electronic devices for in-flight shopping and service requests.

Collins Aerospace has unveiled a new touchless in-flight solution for onboard crew and passenger services.

Now available to airlines across the globe, the Electronic Cabin Bag (eCB) digitalises and automates cabin crew tasks while enabling passengers to use their personal electronic devices for in-flight shopping and service requests.

By digitising documents, in-flight processes and in-flight inventory, the eCB solution puts the information that the cabin crew needs to better serve passengers on a single device, replacing traditional paper-heavy processes. The solution also eliminates the need for passengers to touch high-traffic call buttons.

In addition, eCB enables airline passengers to access real-time onboard inventory of food, beverage and in-flight shopping at any stage during the flight, with the knowledge that what is being shown to them is what is available to purchase. eCB is further enhanced when the aircraft has a satellite connection to enable real-time credit card payment verification — reducing the levels of fraudulent transactions.

“eCB gives airlines a boost in efficiency and ancillary revenue while simultaneously helping their passengers and crew feel confident in returning to travel,” said Clotilde Enel-Rehel, General Manager for Commercial Aviation & Network Services for Collins Aerospace. “The data and analytics generated by eCB will also enable airlines to make informed decisions to better support their strategic and tactical planning.”

Emirates ice IFE

InflightFlix seeks to help tourism recover

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Emirates ice IFE

InflightFlix is inviting tourism businesses in Dubai to secure their places on its Great Dubai Experiences destination video guide.

Great Dubai Experiences will be made available free of charge to all 53 airlines with in-flight entertainment that had routes to Dubai in 2019, as well as airports, hotels and an extensive network of digital, social and mobile channels.

In advance of production, InflightFlix has agreed distribution with Emirates and Inflight Dublin, who have confirmed distribution on six additional airlines, who collectively carried over 30 million passengers in 2019.

The Great Dubai Experiences video guide will be produced in long form for airlines in-flight entertainment, as well as various short forms for additional distribution partners to use for each digital channel.

InflightFlix will work with the selected companies in advance of the shoot to agree a precise shot-list and storyboard that best represents the experience in question,

Applications are currently being accepted ahead of the 25 June closing date.

A similar initiative has been established in Ireland, where InflightFlix has created VisitIreland.TV.

VisitIreland.TV is a county-by-county video guide to Ireland, comprising 32 videos one for each of Ireland’s counties, promoting the county’s best attractions and showcasing its entertainment, dining, and shopping experiences.

Each of Ireland’s 32 counties will be represented in one of eight one-hour programmes, showcasing four counties per programme. For channels where shorter formats are more suitable, individual counties will feature within standalone 15-minute videos.

FlightFlix is currently seeking investment of €100,000 per county, in order to create and distribute the video content to over 29 airlines with IFE currently serving Ireland.

Inflight Dublin has been awarded the contract for the provision of content and wireless inflight entertainment (IFE) services by Danish charter airline Sunclass Airlines

Sunclass Airlines opts for Inflight Dublin for IFE services

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Inflight Dublin has been awarded the contract for the provision of content and wireless inflight entertainment (IFE) services by Danish charter airline Sunclass Airlines

Inflight Dublin has been awarded the contract for the provision of content and wireless in-flight entertainment (IFE) services by Danish charter airline Sunclass Airlines.

As of July 2021, Inflight Dublin will begin providing its wireless IFE solution, Everhub, on board Sunclass Airlines’ A321 aircraft, while also providing content services across their A330 fleet. The content catalogue consists of Hollywood movies, TV shows, boxsets, music, and publications. Also included is the revenue-generating gaming platform, Gladia8tor Gaming.

“Broadening our partnership with Inflight Dublin is a reflection of our commitment to further engage with our passengers and to create exciting new revenue streams. The quick turnaround time and the utilisation of one supplier for both our content and wireless IFE requirements will ensure an efficient and flexible setup, rollout and future expansion of this innovative service. As we emerge from the Covid-19 crisis, we are delighted to have Inflight Dublin’s continued support and to avail of their Wireless IFE solution, Everhub. It will be an exciting addition to our in-flight service for our loyal passengers,” commented Christina Pedersen, Sunclass Airlines’ Customer Experience Manager.

“Sunclass Airlines’ decision to continue our partnership for content services while also introducing Everhub on their narrow body aircraft gives us great pride and further validates that Everhub is the leading Wireless IFE solution in the market. With the endless possibilities our scalable solution offers, Sunclass Airlines and Inflight Dublin will be building on the initial rollout with a range of engaging features to delight passengers and generate additional revenues in the near future” stated Barry Flynn, Inflight Dublin’s CCO.

PLAY uniforms

PLAY unveils new casual look uniform

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PLAY uniforms

New low-cost Icelandic airline PLAY has revealed its new cabin crew uniforms.

The casual apparel has been designed by couple Kolla Gunnarsdottir and Gunni Hilmarsson who commented: “We were honoured and pleased to get to work with PLAY on this clothing line for their uniforms. We really wanted to throw out all those old ideas about airline uniforms and bring in more comfort. We tried to scrap the constrictive rules often associated with these uniforms and include relaxed fits, stretchy fabrics and of course, shoes meant for working on your feet! The result is a mix of active wear and a fresh uniform.”

The uniforms are meant to encompass PLAY’s core values, simplicity, playfulness, competitiveness, equality and on-time performance.

“It was really satisfying to see how well Gunni and Kolla got our brief and our ideas for this line. We had certain ideas about the clothing and how it should represent and work with our brand and the results are just amazing,” stated Jónína Guðmundsdóttir, Chief People Officer of PLAY, whose responsibilities include uniforms.

The uniforms, which includes trainers, are not gender specific, with the crew able to select the outfit they want. Guidance on hair, make up, tattoos and nail polish have been removed.

Delta's Marinara-braised meatballs

Delta serves up fresh meals again

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Delta's Marinara-braised meatballs

Delta has reintroduced fresh meals to its premium domestic cabins.

“The new meals are the latest in an ongoing series of enhancements we’ve been making to our offerings in flight,” said Delta’s Chief Customer Experience Officer Allison Ausband. “Delta continues to take an intentional approach to the return of our onboard food and beverage program to ensure service is coming back safely and even better than before.”

To ensure a thoughtful reintroduction of its world-renowned service offerings, Delta engaged Mayo Clinic on multiple rounds of testing and onboard simulations to redesign its in-flight service procedures to ensure safe delivery.

From 15 June, Delta One and First Class customers flying from Boston and New York-JFK to and from Seattle, Los Angeles and San Francisco will see the return of popular breakfast, lunch and dinner items like lemon ricotta pancakes with blueberry thyme syrup, a smoked salmon plate with bagel chips, and beef short ribs with whipped potatoes. Additionally, Delta’s bread service will now feature locally sourced sourdough bread and batch-churned, slow-cultured butter from Atlanta-based Banner Butter. Customers in these cabins will be able to browse the menus digitally via their seatback screens.

For customers flying from Los Angeles, Delta partners and chefs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo are preparing Italian-American fare, which includes staples like marinara-braised meatballs and juicy chicken parmesan. Their recipes feature local, fresh and seasonal ingredients inspired by the dishes served at Jon and Vinny’s popular eateries, including Animal, Son of a Gun and Jon & Vinny’s.

Delta One, First Class and Delta Comfort+ customers on domestic longer-haul flights will also enjoy additional tasty treats including Kind Energy bars, potato chips, cookies and more, served from a complimentary snack basket. Flight Fuel snack boxes that offer items like protein bars, beef jerky, chips, and chocolates are available for purchase for customers in Main Cabin on these flights.

Later this summer, customers flying Delta One or First Class on routes over 1,500 miles within North America, the Caribbean and Latin America will enjoy artisan sandwiches, salads and bowls specially curated for Delta. The new meals offer nourishing options like coconut chia oatmeal, a superfood grain bowl, a strawberry salad with seared chicken, an Italian prosciutto and fresh mozzarella sandwich and more.

“Customers are ready to enjoy their favourite bites on board again, and we’re working to ramp up our service while following Mayo Clinic recommendations to ensure that we continue to deliver the safest, and most delicious, experience,” said Mike Crowley, Vice President of Onboard Service Operations at Delta.

Southwest podcast promo

Southwest celebrates 50th anniversary with podcast series

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Southwest podcast promo

As part of its 50th anniversary celebrations, Southwest Airlines has partnered with L.A. Times Studios and At Will Media to produce a 20-episode podcast series called Is This Seat Open?.

“As we look back on 50 years of Southwest Airlines, our world and our industry have changed significantly, but what has remained constant is the Heart demonstrated by the People of Southwest,” said Linda Rutherford, Senior Vice President and Chief Communication Officer. “We’re a company full of remarkable stories, thanks to the diverse group of employees and customers who define Southwest, so what better way to celebrate our milestone 50th Anniversary than to share some of this rich history. These one-of-a-kind stories set Southwest apart, show the heart and hospitality of our employees, and will serve as the foundation for the next 50 years and beyond.”

Southwest Employees Quinnie Jenkins, a Manager in Community Outreach, and Lucas Hershberger, an in-flight Supervisor, host the podcast, whose title, Is This Seat Open? draws upon Southwest’s open-seating policy.

Is This Seat Open? is available on all podcast platforms, including iHeartRadio, Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and more. There are currently 10 episodes available, with additional episodes launching on 15 June and 22 June for a total of 20 episodes in the series.

The podcast project includes a companion website, latimes.com/isthisseatopen, which features photos, archival content, videos, news clips, and write-ups for further context and information about each story.

“This podcast is about Southwest Airlines, but it’s really for anyone who flies or loves the backstory on a business succeeding against the odds,” said Allie Prater, Director of Branded Content, L.A. Times Studios. “We were honoured to work with Southwest and At Will to bring forward some of the many true stories that make this airline so unique, and so beloved by its customers.”

Southwest Customers can listen to Is This Seat Open? via iHeartRadio free of charge through the in-flight entertainment portal on their personal devices. Customers who already have the iHeartRadio app installed on their devices can play the podcast directly from the app while onboard Southwest flights.

Due to licensing restrictions, iHeartRadio may not be available onboard Wi-Fi-enabled international flights. The iHeartRadio product is available only on Wi-Fi-enabled aircraft. Is This Seat Open? is funded by Southwest Airlines and produced by L.A. Times Studios and At Will Media. The Los Angeles Times newsroom was not involved in the production of this podcast.