Airlines usually specify times for checking in and getting to the departure gate. They may
recommend a slightly longer time frame for passengers with disabilities and reduced mobility, so be
sure to confirm this in advance of your flight.
When you arrive at the airport you should go to as assistance point. This can be inside or
outside of the terminal.
Assistance points will usually have some type of disability related logo, and include a buzzer
or telephone to enable you to call for assistance should they not be staffed at that time.
Airports must locate assistance points at various places in the airport boundary and this may
include drop off points, car parks, train stations and bus terminals. If you park at a medium/long
term car park you will usually need to make your own way to the terminal using the airport's bus
service. In the UK these vehicles are generally accessible, in terms of having a ramp, so that
people in wheelchairs can board.
If you need extra help at in the airport, including during security searches, airport special
assistance desks can provide identification (lanyards, badges etc.) to people with hidden
disabilities. These are optional.
There should be signs in the airport to where the “special assistance” help
Alternatively a companion can escort you, including pushing you in an airport
provided wheelchair, through the airport and up to the departure gate. If you have your own
wheelchair or electric mobility aid you should be able to use your own equipment right up to the
Many airports have a designated area in the departure lounge where you can wait until your
flight is called.
Special assistance staff can help you travel through the departure gate and on to the aircraft.
They will also help you get to your seat and with stowing your carry on bags if required.
To assist with this process, different equipment may be used. These include ambi-lifts (also
referred to as high lifts), ramps, and small “transfer” wheelchairs which are used on the
On arrival, your wheelchair or mobility aid should be returned to you at the arrival gate,
unless there are extenuating reasons.
You may be entitled to assistance through immigration, customs, baggage reclaim, and all the way
to the designated arrival point, depending on the country visited. This may include some car parks,
train stations, drop off points.
If you experience any problems with your assistance which are not satisfactorily resolved at the
time, we recommend asking if you can take the name of your attendant, and then raise the matter
with the airline / airport.
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