British Airways to improve disabled experience

The new Customer Access Advisory Panel Credit: British Airways

It is difficult enough to deal with transit through most airports if you are healthy and fit but for those with disabilities flying can be a nightmare.

British Airways (BA) has not always been at the forefront of disabled passenger care and readers have observed that those who require disabled assistance have been taken to the wrong aircraft and in one case in mid-winter BA forgot to arrange a wheel chair, passenger was made to walk off the arriving aircraft and waited more than hour and a half in the cold for assistance.

Asking disabled passengers for advice

Hopefully this is about to change as British Airways has created its new Customer Access Advisory Panel, aimed at engaging with members of the community to improve the end-to-end experience for its customers with accessibility requirements.

The independent panel, comprised of individuals with both visible and non-visible disabilities, will come together every few months to provide invaluable feedback and discuss and review new initiatives, to ensure that British Airways’ products and services are designed and built with accessibility and inclusion in mind.

New advisory panel of disabled flyers

The panel is chaired by Mary Doyle, a proud wheelchair user and accessible aviation consultant who is dedicated to providing organisations with practical support around inclusivity.

Other panellists include someone who is deaf, another who is blind, a frequent traveller who suffers from autism and another wheelchair user together with the editor of the Disability Power100.

As IAG the parent of BA also owns Aer Lingus, Iberia and Vueling, it is to be assumed that similar regard for disabled passengers will exist in those companies as well.

Whilst British Airways travels to destinations all over the world, the tiny Gibraltar Government has just installed wheelchair friendly ramps which allow disabled users to easily board or disembark from any size of aircraft that may land at the Rock’s airport.

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Written by

John Smith

Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica. Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene. Currently he is acting as Editorial Consultant for the paper helping to shape its future development. Share your story with us by emailing newsdesk@euroweeklynews.com, by calling +34 951 38 61 61 or by messaging our Facebook page www.facebook.com/EuroWeeklyNews

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