Catering & onboard services sessions added to Passenger Experience Conference


The organisers behind WTCE (the World Travel Catering & Onboard Services Expo) have announced details of sessions at the Passenger Experience Conference (PEC) that have been added to interest the sector.

The conference, which will take place at Congress Center Hamburg (CCH) in Germany on Monday 13 June 2022, will explore ways that the passenger experience community is helping to rebuild the industry following the Covid-19 pandemic of the past two years. Experts representing the aviation sector, including TAP Air Portugal, Virgin Atlantic, Safran Cabin and Inmarsat are confirmed to speak, with interactive Q&As set to follow each session.

The sessions being put on for the catering and onboard services community include ‘Building Value and Values into the journey’, which will look at how to add delight to the passenger experience, and how to create onboard services that travellers will truly value because they are aligned to their needs and values. Speakers will also examine what processes need rethinking and where the opportunities lie to make the passengers’ onboard experience easier. Finally, the session will analyse how airlines can establish connection, trust and meaningful engagement with passengers, as well as the strategies that open up revenue opportunities for airlines and their partners.

The expert panellists will include Dr Stathis Kefallonitis, professor of aviation business & passenger intelligence at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University; Giorgino Macalino, associate director of R&D for corporate makeup innovation at Estée Lauder; Ron Verweij, senior manager, UX design & innovation connectivity at Safran Cabin; and Anne De Hauw, founder of IN Air Travel Experience.

The Customer Experience Investment Dilemma

There are three elements to creating digital travel experiences – current technology, business needs and passenger experience – and a successful outcome requires them to intersect. However, say the WTCE organisers, all too often, organisations focus on the first two factors, leaving out the passenger point of view. This session, featuring Seth Miller, editor at PaxEx.Aero and Konsta Hansson, managing director at Reaktor Aero, will look at ways for the industry to reach the ideal balance for better business outcomes.

Revitalising Air Travel

The ‘Revitalising Air Travel’ session will delve into the critical passenger experience strategies that will transform travel and support airline renewal. Jennifer Newlands, VP and head of strategy for brand and content at Airbus, will be joined by Silvia Mosquera, chief commercial and revenue officer at TAP Portugal and Anthony Woodman, VP of customer journeys & rewards at Virgin Atlantic, to examine how innovative airlines are mapping out the routes to more seamless and efficient journeys, with human values at heart. Attendees at this session can hear directly from airline experience chiefs about how they are responding to the needs of passengers, who are at the vanguard of travel recovery and building sustainable businesses.

Carbon Budgets – Addressing the Environmental Footprint of Business Travel

Pressure for aviation to change is not only coming from individual travellers; businesses are also weighing up the environmental impact of aviation when booking corporate travel. This session will be led by Andrew Doyle, senior director of market development at Cirium, and will offer context to the challenges and opportunities ahead. It will centre around evaluating how corporate travel spending is being shaped by the carbon emissions of individual flights, and the panel will discuss solutions to give travellers more agency and a better understanding of the carbon cost of their flight, as well as evaluating the potential impacts on aircraft routes, fleet and, ultimately, the cabin classes onboard.

Differentiating by Delight – Mapping the Future for Digital Experiences

IFE is an essential in long-haul travel, and a growing expectation on shorter flights. But with an eye on accelerating industry recovery, how should we move beyond entertainment, beyond monetisation even, towards connecting with passengers’ practical and emotional needs in order to delight them?

Experts in this session will include Joe Leader, CEO of APEX (the Airline Passenger Experience Association) & IFSA (the International Flight Services Association); Guillaume Vivet, VP of digital commerce & experience at Inmarsat; Jonas von Kruechten, head of strategy & business development at AerQ; and Christian Grou co-founder of Neutral Digital. The session will take a deep dive into the impact of creating more nuanced and targeted connections for new business opportunities and revenues. It will also detail the key strategic and practical requirements for airlines seeking to elevate their digital passenger engagement.

Delegates can relax after the conference, as they are invited to the Passenger Experience Conference Industry Networking Party. The event is free to attend for delegates, and is a great opportunity to reconnect with peers, while enjoying live music and international cuisine. For those looking to attend AIX or WTCE but unable to attend the conference, tickets for the Industry Networking party can be purchased during registration.

Polly Magraw, event director for AIX, WTCE and the PEC commented, “Complementing the innovation anticipated at this year’s WTCE, we are delighted to announce the line-up for this June’s Passenger Experience Conference. The pandemic has fundamentally shifted how the aviation sector does business, with an increased focus on building anew for the future and not simply repairing the past. This year’s speaker line-up will help us answer how we should be responding to the different cohorts of passengers who will be in the vanguard of travel recovery, while creating flying experiences that meet their needs and address their values.”

The Passenger Experience Conference will take place at the newly renovated Congress Center Hamburg on Monday 13 June, ahead of the WTCE show, taking place on 14-16 June. For more information and to register to attend, visit the Passenger Experience Conference website here.

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Ever since his first flight on a TriStar, Adam has loved air travel, and since becoming editor of the Aircraft Interiors International brand he has really enjoyed the opportunity to be involved with the latest aircraft and airline products before they are even launched. Adam co-ordinates the running of the magazine, from commissioning articles and artwork, to ensuring that high standards of quality are maintained, as well as managing online content. Adam is proud to sit on the jury of the Crystal Cabin Awards and to have laid on the bed in Etihad's Residence.

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