Showing posts with label ACI. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ACI. Show all posts

16 December, 2023

ACI World and Cirium Partner on Landmark Data Collaboration to Strengthen World’s Leading Airport Service Quality Program

Partnership solidifies ACI World’s commitment to the accuracy and reliability of customer experience data.

Airports Council International (ACI) World and Cirium, a global leader in aviation data analytics, begin a landmark collaboration to strengthen the Airport Service Quality (ASQ) program—the world’s leading airport customer experience measurement and benchmarking program.

The ASQ program's methodology is renowned for its robustness, ensuring the most accurate representation of airport traffic. In recognizing the critical role that flight databases play in the assessment of respondent sampling, Cirium will serve as the reference database for flights supporting the ASQ methodology—solidifying the ASQ program’s commitment to accuracy and reliability. Cirium’s core platform provides details on more than 35 million flights per year and covers 97% of scheduled flights worldwide.

Compared to other programs in the aviation industry, the ASQ program is based on live research via surveys gathered at the airport—direct from the traveller—rating their satisfaction on the day of travel. It serves as the basis for the annual ASQ Awards which recognize the best airports for customer experience worldwide, as selected by passengers.

20 January, 2023

Aviation industry welcomes pause on roll out of new border system for EU

Aviation industry welcomes pause on the rollout of new border system for the EU

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto
ACI EUROPE, A4E, ERA and IATA welcome the decision to postpone the implementation of the EU’s new smart border system for non-EU nationals (i.e. Entry Exit System, EES).
The EES system will be a game changer for how the EU’s borders are managed. There are, however, a number of issues which must be resolved to ensure a smooth rollout and operation of the new system so that air passengers do not face disruptions. 


These issues include:


Wider adoption and effective implementation of automation at national border crossing points by national authorities,
Funding by member states to ensure a sufficient number of trained staff and resources are deployed to manage the EU’s external border, particularly at airports,
Deployment of sufficient resources to support the implementation of new procedures by airports and airlines, and
The need for a public communications campaign to alert third-country nationals to the new requirements.

The aviation industry is fully behind the rollout of EES and is committed to working with the EU and national authorities for a successful implementation. But it is important the EU and national authorities address industry concerns and provide efficient coordination for an effective implementation. This includes EU-LISA (the agency responsible for managing the system) strengthening its communications with the industry, and with international partners such as the US, to ensure the IT systems are connected and compatible. 

Postponing the implementation until after the busy 2023 summer period will give airlines, airports, EU and national authorities the opportunity to resolve these issues and ensure the system is fully tested. We, therefore, urge all those involved to make the best use of the extra time now available to address the outstanding issues and ensure enough resources are deployed for its introduction. A new start date for EES should be set to ensure continued smooth aviation operations and in particular trouble-free processing of passengers at airports. This will help deliver the time savings the European Commission identified as the biggest benefit of EES. 

Building traveller confidence with an effective rollout of EES is critical for the aviation sector as it continues its recovery.

The Entry/Exit System (EES) is an automated IT system for registering non-EU nationals travelling for a short stay, each time they cross the external borders of European countries using the system. The EES will apply to all non-EU travelers travelling to a European country within the Schengen zone for short stays of up to 90 days within any 180-day period.

EU-LISA is an EU agency founded in 2011 responsible for the management of large-scale IT systems associated with the EU’s area of freedom, security and justice. It is central to the implementation of the asylum, border management and migration policies of the EU. At its recent Management Board meeting, it confirmed the decision to postpone EES implementation.

13 March, 2022

Airports and Airlines call for all intra-EU COVID Travel Restrictions to be dropped

ACI EUROPE (Airports Council International) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) called for all remaining COVID restrictions applying to intra-EU and Schengen area travel to be dropped, including all testing requirements, the need to present proof of vaccination or complete a Passenger Locator Form (PLF). This includes dropping mask-wearing for travel within or between States where it is no longer required in other indoor environments.

COVID-19, and specifically the Omicron variant, is now pervasive throughout all of Europe, and population immunity is at such levels that the risk of hospitalization or death has dramatically reduced, especially for vaccinated people. States are adopting surveillance strategies to ensure public health, in the same way as they do for other coronaviruses and infectious diseases.

Many European states have lifted domestic COVID restrictions, such as the need to provide health credentials to enter social events, or the requirement to wear masks in public spaces. Contact tracing efforts are also being stood down, rendering PLFs for international travel redundant. As European countries open up and remove restrictions, it is only logical to remove similar restrictions from air transport.

IATA and ACI EUROPE presented further evidence in support of aligning air transport rules with domestic regulations.

New research by OXERA/Edge Health (pdf) published today shows that even if a new variant is discovered and travel restrictions introduced immediately, this only delays the peak of infections by a maximum of only four days.

In reality, by the time that a new variant emerges, is identified, and restrictions are put in place, the variant is likely already circulating in communities around the world. In a scenario where restrictions are delayed by a week from identification, the peak in infections per 100,000 people is only delayed by a maximum of two days. These negligible health benefits are therefore outweighed by the significant social and economic damage caused by the negative impact on air travel.

“March 11 marks exactly two years since the WHO announced COVID-19 was a global pandemic. In that time, we have seen increasing evidence that border restrictions are ineffective. The latest research from OXERA and Edge Health confirms that by the time a variant of concern is identified and restrictions are implemented, cross-border transmission will already have happened. Europe’s population immunity is strong and COVID-19 is essentially now an endemic disease. The time has come to focus their COVID efforts on surveillance and remove remaining intra-EU restrictions. This will free people to travel, and support jobs returning to the European air transport and travel sectors,” said Rafael Schvartzman, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Europe

“The independent research and modelling published today show that governments can lift restrictions with confidence – both for today and for any future variants of concern.  Travel restrictions have proven to be a blunt instrument with little to no impact on virus transmission. Removing all COVID-19 restrictions will finally fully restore the freedom to travel. That will be a much-needed boost for the whole travel and tourism sectors which has been forced to shed hundreds of thousands of jobs during the pandemic,” said Olivier Jankovec, Director General, ACI EUROPE.

In the light of the new research and increasing signs that the severity of COVID-19 is becoming closer to that of seasonal influenza, ACI EUROPE and IATA wrote jointly to Ministers of Transport and Health throughout EU member states, requesting to:

remove all health-related travel and border restrictions ahead of the summer season, at least on intra- EEA flights, specifically testing, contact tracing, and vaccine certificates
align the health restrictions applicable to aviation to those applied nationally, particularly with reference to mask mandates allow those vaccinated with a WHO-approved vaccine to travel into the EEA from third countries with the same conditions as those passengers vaccinated with an EMA-approved vaccine.

ACI EUROPE and IATA also reiterated the vital role played by the EU Digital Covid Certificate (DCC) in giving states the confidence to reopen borders and restart travel.

“We would like to use this opportunity to applaud the EU and Member States for the EU DCC development and implementation. We strongly support the value of the EU DCC which will remain crucial, especially for European citizens travelling abroad as well as for third countries. Likewise, the EU DCC will be useful for the containment of eventual variants of concern and enhance industry resilience against future health outbreaks,” the letter said.

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18 May, 2021

CargoAir has taken delivery of its first Boeing 737-800SF freighter aircraft

The Sofia based, Bulgaria cargo airline CargoAir has taken delivery of its first Boeing 737-800SF freighter aircraft, MSN 30664 from Aeronautical Engineers, Inc. (AEI).  

The jet is the first AEI B737-800SF freighter conversion to be operated in Europe. AEI received EASA approval for the B737-800SF on May 7, 2021.

A second 737-800SF freighter will start the conversion and modification in June at Commercial Jet in Miami, Florida and will then be delivered to CargoAir. 

These twin jet freighters offer a main deck payload of up to 52,700 lbs. (23,904kg) and incorporates eleven full-height 88” x 125” container positions, plus an additional position for an AEP/AEH. The conversion also incorporates new floor beams aft of the wing box, a large 86” x 137” Main Cargo Door with a single vent door system. Additionally, the aircraft are fitted with a flexible Ancra Cargo Loading System, a rigid 9g barrier, five supernumerary seats as standard, a galley and a full lavatory.

12 May, 2021

Travel & tourism stakeholders’ position on Digital Green Certificate Trilogues & Council Recommendation on travel coordination

In its latest Communication updating the New Industrial Strategy (05.05.2021), the European Commission recognised that tourism was “hardest hit” by the COVID-19 crisis and that mobility “would face a slower and more uneven recovery”. It is time to support the travel and tourism ecosystem, which is vital for the broader restart of the European economy.

As travel and tourism associations, we welcome the proposal on a digital green certificate (DGC) to restore EU freedom of movement. We also see it as a useful tool to facilitate international mobility for leisure and other purposes, whilst containing the spread of COVID-19.

However, we believe that beyond ensuring that the certificate is genuine and valid, the systems in place should allow checks against the travel requirements at destination. This would facilitate the full digital integration of the certificates, therefore reducing the average time needed to check a passenger’s documentation at the gate/terminal/station (currently up to 2 min in aviation). Failure to do so would result in significant capacity issues, compromising the efficient flow of passengers – at airports in particular – and potentially resulting in additional health safety risk. Providing this information would also help passengers navigate the requirements ahead of their journey.

14 October, 2020

ACI and IATA Call for Urgent Industry-Wide Support to Underpin Recovery

ACI and IATA Call for Urgent Industry-Wide Support to Underpin Recovery 

Direct financial assistance and coordinated global action on testing needed  

                             Airports Council International (ACI) World and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) reinforced the urgent call for governments to use testing as a means to safely re-open borders and re-establish global connectivity and to prevent the systemic collapse of the aviation industry with non-debt generating financial support.

The dual measures would protect countries from the importation of COVID-19 cases, avert an employment crisis in the travel and tourism sector, and ensure that the critical aviation structure remains viable and able to support the economic and social benefits on which the world relies.

The Air Transport Action Group (ATAG) estimates that 46 million jobs are at risk because of the loss of connectivity caused by the COVID-19 crisis. The vast majority of these (41.2 million jobs) are in the travel and tourism sector which relies on aviation. The remainder (4.8 million jobs) are spread across direct employment in aviation, including airports and airlines.

08 October, 2020

ACI World and IATA in Joint Push for Globally Consistent Approach to Testing

ACI World and IATA in Joint Push for Globally Consistent Approach to Testing

Joint presentation to ICAO to urge replacing quarantine
 with risk-based testing

 Airports Council International (ACI) World and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) have today made a joint call for a globally-consistent approach to testing international passengers as an alternative to quarantine measures.

The global shut down of air transport as a result of COVID-19 travel restrictions has had a catastrophic impact on employment. Some 4.8 million industry jobs have been lost or are under threat. 

Governments must cooperate to remove quarantine restrictions and restart air travel. A systematic approach to COVID-19 testing will provide an effective way to give governments the confidence to re-open borders without quarantine. 

03 October, 2020

Three aviation bodies set out common framework for pre-departure testing at airports so they can re-establish freedom of movement in Europe......

Photo CDC

Three of the big aviation bodies in Europe have come together to call on governments and European leaders to lift quarantine restrictions and introduce mass testing for coronavirus COVID-19 at airports. to help reopen Europe. 

ACI EUROPE, Airlines for Europe (A4E) and IATA have called on authorities and governments to work together for the benefit of the whole aviation industry.  They have now submitted a framework for how an EU-wide Testing Protocol for Travel (EU-TPT)  could actually work. 

In follow up letters sent to the Commission President and Heads of State, as well as Health Ministers across Europe, these three aviation business associations have set out their proposal for harmonised pre-departure testing from high-risk areas, describing the current situation of patchwork quarantine restrictions as “unsustainable”.  

Aviation industry data confirms the worsening situation. IATA figures show air traffic to, from and within Europe is down by 66.3% year to date. Latest figures from ACI EUROPE reveal that as of 27 September, passenger traffic in the EU had further plunged to -78%.   

New research released by the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG) on the impact of COVID-19 restrictions suggests the collapse of air traffic could result in a 52% drop in employment supported by aviation in Europe, equating to the loss of around 7 million jobs. Nearly €450 billion in economic activity will be lost. Urgent action is therefore required to prevent an even greater economic and employment catastrophe.