New guidelines aim to improve accessibility at airports

Airport departures board

New guidelines have been published by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to make air travel more accessible for passengers with sight loss and other hidden disabilities. 

The new guidance sets out how UK airports should support people with hidden disabilities and help improve their journeys. 

It offers clear information on how airports should support passengers including providing clear and detailed information ahead of travel, as well as enhanced training for airport and security staff. 

Key guidelines for airports include:

  • Airport staff to undergo sight loss and hidden disability awareness training, as well as training to cover communication techniques.
  • Ahead of travel, airports to provide clear and detailed information to help with overall familiarisation of the airport environment and help ease anxiety and stress. Communication should include a combination of accessible videos, photos and pictures of airport processes.
  • People with hidden disabilities to be given the option of wearing a lanyard, bracelet or other suitably designed aid provided by the airport to ensure they are easily identified by staff and can get the assistance they need.
  • Clear images and audio messages to be available throughout the airport to help passengers find essential points such as toilets, quiet areas and assistance points.
  • Airports to consider facilitating 'familiarisation visits' or open days for passengers prior to travel to help them experience the airport and aircraft environment.

Read the full CAA guidelines.