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August 2015

It was a hot August for aviation around the world.

I got to cover everything from seats to liveries, and all points in between. I also had some great conversations with industry leaders, top brand gurus and leading industry innovators from whom I learned bunches. There were new product concepts to explore and ANA revealed two new Star Wars themed liveries.

In Print

Airline Passenger Experience Magazine, the Design Issue /APEX Association

APEX Design Issue

High Demand Drives Seating Innovations, pages 78-80

The Brands that Bond Us, pages 129-135

Top brand specialists, Peter Knapp of Landor, Devin Liddell of Teague, and Christopher Nurko of Futurebrand share their insights on what branding strategies are critical to bring airlines together during the merger process.


There was actually a lot more to cover on airline branding for mergers than could fit in the print edition of APEX Magazine. How could there not be? With the industry’s ongoing consolidation, this is a topic one could write a whole book about–or at least four interesting in-depth case-studies.

Alitalia and Etihad, Separate but Equal: Branding Strategies Part One, APEX Digital

LATAM, A Cultural Blend: Branding Strategies Part Two, APEX Digital

Managing the Mega Merger, American Airlines and US Airways: Branding Strategies Part Three, APEX Digital

Building a Lasting Bond, United and Continental Airlines: Branding Strategies Part Four, APEX Digital


Conversations with Industry Leaders

Craig Kreeger, CEO Virgin Atlantic Airways
Craig Kreeger, CEO Virgin Atlantic Airways

Skift Global Forum 2015: Virgin Atlantic CEO on Building a Lasting Airline Brand, Skift

Interview: Spirit CEO on Building an Airline That Trades Comfort for Low Fares, Skift

Interview: What Spirit Air’s CEO Learned by Working for His Competitors, Skift

Building on the Brand

ANA BB8 livery/ANA
ANA BB8 livery/ANA

More Force in New Livery as ANA Rockets Forward with Star Wars Franchise, Skift

ANA has knocked one out of the galaxy by aligning itself with the Star Wars franchise. A brilliant move on their part.

Qantas’ Dreamliner Plans Mark the Beginning of ‘New Era’, Skift

Dreamy Dreamliners: Airlines Make the Most of the Boeing 787s Assets, APEX Digital

Cathay Pacific on Designing Brand Experience from the Ground Up, Skift


Getting Ahead of the Competition

Etihad Fare Choices/Etihad Airways
Etihad Fare Choices/Etihad Airways

From Super-Lux to Raw Unbundled, Etihad Introduces 8 New Fare Tiers, Skift

Fare Skies Ahead: Airlines Offering Fresh Pricing Models, APEX Digital

Upselling Is Killing the Airline Industry One Bad Economy Seat at a Time, Skift

Emirates Can Soon Claim Fame to the World’s Longest Commercial Flight, Skift

On the Passenger Experience

Emirates Fly With Me Monsters, Image Emirates Press Office
Emirates Fly With Me Monsters, Image Emirates Press Office

Eight Family-Friendly Airlines That Make Traveling With Kids a Little Easier, Travel+Leisure, Digital

The Future of Flying Could Be More Like a Cruise, Skift

Air Travelers With Disabilities See Some Improvements, Study Finds, Skift

Etihad Adds Concierge Service Because Butlers on a Plane Aren’t Fancy Enough, Skift

The Aircraft Seat Supplier That Built a Business Designing a Better Premium, Skift


Smart Seat Wireless Actuator by B/E Aerospace
Smart Seat Wireless Actuator by B/E Aerospace

We Found the Smart Aircraft Seat that Could Spare Millions of Passengers’ Knees, Skift

Yes, we did find it. You may have read about this innovative seat by B/E Aerospace elsewhere, but, like my other articles on industry patents and new developments, this was the article that started it all.

Technology and Innovation

Butterfly J Suite-View/James S.H. Lee, Paperclip Design
Butterfly J Suite-View/James S.H. Lee, Paperclip Design

Airbus Has a Tech Accelerator That Could Make Flying Better for Everyone, Skift

I was quite excited about this one because one of the companies joining Airbus’ wonderful accelator program is James Lee’s Paperclip Design. This young designer has the vision to push the passenger experience to the next level, and it’s good to see him get support from an OEM.

Delta’s Retrofit Cabins See High Tech Upgrades from Panasonic and Zodiac, APEX Digital

Great Connections: At 800th Install Milestone, Panasonic is Bullish on Connectivity Market, APEX Digital

Azul Becomes First Carrier in the Americas to Adopt AIRCOM FlightTracker, Skift

Gogo’s New High-Speed In-Flight Wi-Fi Clears Final FAA Hurdle, Skift

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