Your guide to flying with a disability

This film has all the answers to disabled travelers’ doubts about flying. Source: Shutterstock.

IN partnership with the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the Queen Elizabeth Foundation (QEF) charity has developed a film that gives wheelchair users, especially powered wheelchair users, information and insights about traveling by air and the support available.

Titled, “Your Guide to Flying with a Disability”, the film follows Jon and his Dad through every aspect of their journey, highlighting what is involved and addressing issues faced by wheelchair users.

It shows every stage of the journey, from the preparation required, through check-in, security, boarding, in-flight and landing, as well as the assistance available.

It offers advice at each stage and also includes useful links to more information which you may need.

As accessible tourism continues to be on the rise, more and more companies and brands are stepping up to be accessible travel-friendly. In June 2018, travel guide book publisher Lonely Planet released a travel phrasebook for the disabled in support of accessible travel/tourism.

Companies such as home-sharing platform Airbnb and Malaysia’s flag carrier Malaysia Airlines have also rolled out new features to cater to disabled travelers, with the latter initiating two training programmes to improve its service in supporting and assisting disabled passengers.

QEF’s film was created in response to a growing need as reports show that in 2017, there were three million requests made for assistance at UK airports.

The requests are increasing at almost double the rate of general passenger growth.

Source: Shutterstock.

“Our QEF Tryb4uFly service has already proven invaluable to many disabled people that have been anxious about taking a flight, but there has been a significant increase in demand for information,” QEF Accessible Aviation expert Graham Race said in a statement.

“British Airways have already confirmed that they will make the film available to all customers who book wheelchair assistance.”

“It is a priority for the UK Civil Aviation Authority to continue to improve the accessibility of air travel. We have worked closely with UK disability charity Queen Elizabeth’s Foundation for Disabled People who have expertise in this area, to develop an insightful and informative film,” CAA director Paul Smith added.

“As it shows every stage of a journey by air for a powered wheelchair user, we hope the film will answer many of the questions people currently have about flying as a wheelchair passenger and increase the confidence to fly.”

Watch the film, which has been subtitled throughout, here:

Useful information on how to deactivate and reactivate your wheelchair can be found here.