Members' News

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UK: A London art student has won a unique design competition by creating a bespoke solution to a safety challenge affecting the whole rail industry - the gap between the train and the platform.

Applying abstract design skills to a real life situation Hayley Wrighton, 21, designed a target-style image which is projected onto the platform to focus passengers’ attention on a safe footing when boarding and alighting a train, reducing the risk of accidents. The design incorporates Heathrow Express branding and includes a way of projecting the image without affecting normal railway operation.

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The challenge of the gap between the train and the platform exists at many railway stations across the UK and this pioneering design will lead the way in platform safety. As well as addressing the brief the design overcame the restrictions of not being able to attach items to the trains; platforms or ‘platform furniture’ as well as having to meet health and safety regulations.

Competition winner Hayley Wrighton who, along with 21 other students, was tasked with designing a solution as part of her BA Interior and Spatial Design course at Chelsea College of Arts, University of the Arts London, receives £250 as well as the opportunity to work with Heathrow Express and its partners to put her design into practice.

After being announced as the winner, Hayley said: “This has completely opened my eyes to how design and safety can work together, I never thought I’d be working on something like this so to win is just amazing. I’ve genuinely enjoyed the process of researching and understanding people’s interaction with my design which I hope goes on to achieve its aim of intriguing people enough to think about the gap. By projecting this image, which is universal and simple, Heathrow Express customers from all over the world should be instinctively drawn to its centre.”

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Research during the design process showed people chose to step on the centre of the target image meaning the image can be placed to encourage people to step to a safe place. The design was selected by a panel of rail, safety and design experts who all agreed Hayley’s work was innovative, impactful and applicable to the real world. The Panel included representatives from Heathrow Airport, Heathrow Express and UAL who were highly impressed by the calibre of work on display.

Dr Ken Wilder, panel member and Interior and Spatial Design Programme Director at Chelsea said: “There’s been a fantastic diversity of approaches to the common problem which merge artistic thinking with practicality. It was exciting to see how the winning design directly addressed the brief in an innovative way using the latest technology while integrating the brand with the safety aspects.”

The competition follows earlier innovation by Heathrow Express which was the first to install industry leading gap fillers which almost completely eliminate the gap at Heathrow Airport stations and therefore risk to passengers. Where these industry-leading devices have been installed, the number of incidents has been reduced by 85% however curved platforms at Paddington prevent the company from using Gap Fillers at the central London station.

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Keith Harding, panel member and Operations Director at Heathrow Express said: "We've been blown away by the creativity of the students who, with a skill set very different to me and my railway colleagues, have shone a new light on how we can tackle a long standing industry challenge.

Congratulations to Hayley who is a deserved winner and thank you to all the students who put their designs forward and to the University for taking on the project.”

The initiative was conceived by Lewis Yourdi, Head of Drivers at Heathrow Express who hosted a visit by students at the station in October before they spent eight weeks researching ideas and perfecting their designs. Heathrow Express will now work with the university and industry partners to implement the design while satisfying existing regulations.

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MALAYSIA: Malindo Air, winner of 2016 Asia Pacific Regional Airline of the Year, in collaboration with Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd (ERL) announced the commencement of Malindo Air’s new KL Sentral’s city check-in services to facilitate and give convenience to their customers who will now be able to check-in at the KL Ekspres Departure Hall. Check-in can be done at least three hours before their flight and the customer’s luggage can be checked through to their final destination.

The cut-off time of three hours before departure would be necessary to facilitate their check-in baggage transfer to KLIA. Travellers need to purchase the KLIA Ekspres train ticket to use this dedicated services. In conjunction with this launch, Malindo Air, in a joint-collaboration with ERL, is offering special discounted fares on KLIA Ekspres at RM40 (one way) for each passenger with a minimum purchase of three tickets. Ticket fares are usually priced at RM55 (one way).

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CEO of Malindo Air, Chandran Rama Muthy said, “The city check-in service that we are offering is another milestone for us as we build a stronghold in Kuala Lumpur. The city centre check-in service at KL Sentral will strategically enhance the travel experience and improve our product offering to our ever growing customers.”

Chandran also said, “With a travelling time of only 28 minutes on ERL’s KLIA Ekspres, and train departures at every 15 minutes interval, it is definitely another convenient and hassle-free travel experience with Malindo Air. Travellers can then board the KLIA Ekspres train to KLIA hassle-free without the checked-in baggage in tow, and bypass check-in queues at KLIA.”

In a related development, Chandran said that Malindo Air will also be opening KL Sentral’s city ticketing office soon.

Malindo Air’s KL Sentral check-in counter is open daily from 5.00am until 10.00pm, and for flight check-in at KL Sentral, proceed to the KLIA Ekspres Departure Hall, located within the KL City Air Terminal.

Noormah Mohd Noor, Chief Executive Officer of Express Rail Link (ERL) said, “We are excited to welcome Malindo Air to KL Sentral. As the school and year-end holidays have just started, there will be a lot of people travelling, so it is very timely for Malindo Air to open their check-in counters in KL Sentral, the main transportation hub in Kuala Lumpur.”

“KL Sentral has tremendous facilities for both business and leisure travellers. With up to 8 hours of early check-in, passengers can use the business meeting facilities, shop for last-minute items, have a meal at one of the many restaurants, and still have time to catch their flight comfortably by taking the KLIA Ekspres,” said Noormah.

Malindo Air passengers can also be rest assured that their luggage will be safely delivered to their final destination. After 14 years of operations, the city check-in facility has a 100% security and delivery record for checked-in luggages.

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ITALY: The construction of the new Milan Malpensa Terminal 2 railway station is completed and will be officially inaugurated on 6th of December by Governmental and Airport Authorities, SEA, Ferrovie Nord, Trenord, and easyJet.

The new railway line will connect Milan Malpensa Terminal 1, serving international and domestic flights, and Terminal 2 which is entirely dedicated to easyJet.

The T1-T2 rail link will officially start operations on 11th of December, connecting the two terminals in 5 minutes.

SEA has designed and built the new station with a contemporary design for a pleasant welcome to all the passengers travelling to and from downtown Milan.

Malpensa Terminal 2 Station

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RUSSIA: Passengers can purchase Aeroexpress tickets through this campaign from the company’s ticket offices.

Starting from November 15, MasterCard holders using the Apple Pay service will be able to buy an Aeroexpress ticket for just one rouble. This special offer is valid for standard tickets purchased from the carrier's ticket offices, located at rail terminals and airports. Until December 5, the first 750 iPhone or Apple Watch owners will have the chance to travel on Aeroexpress virtually for free.

"We have been cooperating with MasterCard for several years and are always pleased to offer our passengers beneficial conditions, provided by our partner", says Aeroexpress COO Valery Fyodorov. "We have become the first rail carrier to accept ApplePay payments. The campaign's objective is to let our passengers know about this new convenient way of paying for Aeroexpress tickets.”

We would like to remind passengers that standard tickets purchased from ticket offices and ticket vending machines or paid for at the turnstiles using the Pay@Gate service cost 470 roubles. Tickets bought via the company's website ( or the Aeroexpress mobile app cost 10% less.

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RUSSIA: Passengers buying Moscow CityPass will also receive Aeroexpress e-ticket in the same transaction.

“We are pleased to cooperate with Moscow CityPass and hope to attract more foreign passengers this way,” Aeroexpress Chief Operating Officer Valery Fedorov said. “Travellers opting for such tourist cards clearly value comfortable and well-planned journeys. Thus, we are confident that they will appreciate our company’s service.”

“It is an honour for us to collaborate with such a brand as Aeroexpress,” Alexander Mityaev, CEO of Russia CityPass said, “tourists will be able to purchase a card from the Russia CityPass website benefiting from the major sightseeing options included in the card, and be able to purchase Aeroexpress tickets. They will only need to scan the QR code on the turnstile to reach Moscow from any airport by Aeroexpress, bypassing ticket offices and queues.”


Earlier this month, as part of the preparations for the FIFA World Cup, Aeroexpress has installed wi-fi on board of its trains.

MaximaTelecom and Aeroexpress have signed a long-term strategic agreement, including all Aeroexpress trains to the unified Moscow Transport Wi-Fi Space.

Connecting the Aeroexpress network to the seamless Moscow Transport Wi-Fi zone, which includes free networks operating in the metro, on buses, trolley-buses, and trams, is an important step in preparing Moscow infrastructure for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

“Connecting to the unified Wi-Fi space will enable passengers to always stay in touch and easily purchase tickets online while aboard the train. This service’s convenience will be valued by foreign FIFA fans, whose acquaintance with Moscow will begin with Aeroexpress,” Valery Fedorov said.

“We are striving to create a comfortable city environment, both for Moscow residents and millions of fans, who will visit Russia’s capital during the FIFA World Cup. The seamless Wi-Fi space is very popular among residents and demonstrates Moscow’s superiority over capital cities elsewhere in the world. We believe that everyone coming to Russia to support their team at this major sport tournament will greatly appreciate the quality of the services we are providing, which have no analogues anywhere in the world,” says Boris Volpe, CEO of MaximaTelecom.

To provide seamless internet access on surface passenger transport, MaximaTelecom has deployed its own mandatory user identification system. To pass through this procedure, it is necessary to provide a mobile phone number or log in via the Common Government Services Portal. Users who have already identified themselves in the MaximaTelecom system (e.g. through the Moscow Metro Wi-Fi network) do not need to repeat this procedure.