ATLANTA and SINGAPORE, Jan. 12, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) and SimpliFlying today announced the first COVID-19-certified airlines for the customer-centric APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying. With 33 airlines currently advancing through the review process, APEX today announced with SimpliFlying the first 12 launch airlines serving six continents that have fully completed the audit, review process, and have been certified.
As the largest non-profit airline association in the world dedicated entirely to the passenger experience, APEX worked with SimpliFlying to develop standards to increase customer safety as more passengers return to the skies. SimpliFlying has served more than 100 airlines worldwide over a decade. One-hundred percent of their focus was on COVID-19 in 2020, based on the creation of airline pandemic safety plans that were in the works even before the novel coronavirus.
The APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFying 58-point checklist covers 10 airline categories for submission verification, validation, and quarterly review certification process. The audit spans categories that include testing, tracing, on-the-ground procedures, in-flight measures, and even co-branded partnerships that further airline product safety integrity. It is expected that airline certification will increase customer awareness of aligned industry health safety standards, encourage more informed air travel choices, and increase air travel by at least 2% on certified airlines in 2021.
"As more travelers return to the skies, APEX wants customers to know the verified steps being taken by airlines worldwide for their well-being," APEX CEO Dr. Joe Leader stated. "Every step that we take with airlines to set even higher standards for health safety for passengers ultimately helps keep people safer in the air and on the ground. With the APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying certification, we provide the external validation and discussion needed further backed by Simplifying's incredible depth of expertise."
Without charge, all airlines worldwide may participate in the APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying process at simpliflying.com/health-safety. The detailed airline questionnaire can also be reviewed here. After the completion of the initial audit with proof points, a step-by-step verification process occurs with airlines, followed by standard level notification. Thus far, approximately one-third of all airlines have further enhanced their customer health safety standards after the initial audit review.
"We believe that health and safety should not be a way for airlines to compete with one another. There needs to be a gold standard that all airlines should meet or exceed to ensure passengers can trust the transport mode. This is what the APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying delivers, in a quantitative manner," SimpliFlying CEO Shashank Nigam stated. "Airlines and aviation professionals will look back years from now recognizing the lives that they saved by investing so heavily in enhanced passenger well-being."
The certification process for APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying requires that airlines reach the "gold standard" of safety for any rating whatsoever. This means that the airline clearly meets and exceeds all needed health standards for passenger safety and well-being that is listed in the questionnaire. Airlines going into the 100 point range beyond "gold standard" health safety will be awarded 2021 Platinum APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying. Finally, airlines reaching hospital-grade level health safety with at least 200 points above the "gold standard" will be awarded 2021 Diamond APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying.
For the initial launch, APEX and SimpliFlying worked with a broad cross-section of airlines ranging from ultra-low-cost-carriers to global carriers. The 2021 APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying airlines certified for the initial launch of the program include:
- Air Canada
- Alaska Airlines
- Qatar Airways
- Singapore Airlines
- Sri Lankan
- Turkish Airlines
- United Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic
Each of these airlines has completed the audit in a month-long process and has been provided a rating of Gold, Platinum, and Diamond, to be announced by each airline.
As an important note, all airlines worldwide remain safe to fly based upon governmental review and COVID-19 requirements. APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying provides a scientifically based validation designed to encourage airlines to reach beyond governmental requirements to a higher standard. APEX believes that aviation should set the highest possible standard for safety as customers are ready to travel. Equal customer safety should be taken before departure and upon arrival, following governmental and global guidelines.
For further advancement of best customer health safety, a medical and scientific research working group will meet regularly to review the latest research focused upon advancements with recommendations centered around airline customers. APEX and SimpliFlying will then work with airlines to advance implementation for passengers in quarterly airline audit updates.
About the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX)
As a global non-profit and one of the world's largest international airline associations, APEX advances passenger experience with the backing of nearly every major airline and valued supplier over the past 42 years. In conjunction with both the International Flight Services Association (IFSA) and Future Travel Experience (FTE), APEX serves the full spectrum of the end-to-end travel experience. APEX reinvests all of its resources to serving its members, strengthening the worldwide airline industry, advancing thought-leadership, fostering business opportunities via events, developing global initiatives, setting key airline standards, and highlighting well-deserved recognition across our industry. For more information about APEX, please visit apex.aero, sign up for the APEX Daily Experience e-newsletter, or follow APEX on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
SimpliFlying is a global leader in aviation strategy, having worked with over 100 airlines and airports worldwide since 2008. Since the beginning of COVID-19, SimpliFlying has focused on rebuilding trust in travel through biosafety measures, testing, and "trace & track". SimpliFlying led the aviation industry's response to the pandemic through its Rise of Sanitised Travel framework. Headquartered in Singapore, SimpliFlying has staff in Canada, Russia, Spain and the United Kingdom. To learn more about SimpliFlying visit https://simpliflying.com/
APEX: Robin Applebaum ([email protected])
SimpliFlying: Pavel Bogomolov ([email protected])
SOURCE APEX (Airline Passenger Experience Association)