Disability

A wheelchair athlete poised to race.

During the London Paralympic Games in 2012, British Airways welcomed around 1,200 athletes from 25 countries. By helping to facilitate a warm and responsive service we ensured the Paralympic Games got off to the perfect start and allowed them to make their time in London a truly unforgettable one.

Our colleagues provide an individual service for all our customers. In 2008, we carried a total of 1497 Paralympians, support staff and officials to the Beijing Games, along with 700 pieces of sporting equipment, 71 sports wheelchairs and 106 day wheelchairs. In 2012 we were proud to help welcome the world to London, and we carried 866 wheelchairs for visiting Paralympians. Helping customers with disabilities is not just for special events, but it is part of our daily routine. Approximately 820,000 of our customers request disability assistance each year. In addition to this, we also receive around a 1,000 requests for special assistance every day at London Heathrow alone.

A wheelchair user travels through the airport.At British Airways we understand that each customer expects and deserves to be provided with a service that meets their individual needs. In order to achieve this we work closely with our customers with disabilities to review our service and target improvements to make their journey seamless and consistent. Delivering this for our customers with disabilities will mean a better service for all.

Our commitment to customers with disabilities

  • Alongside the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games we regularly held a Disabled Customer Forum, with fantastic participation from our most regular customers with disabilities in the lead up to the Games.
  • We reviewed the entire journey process for customers with disabilities to improve all aspects of the journey process and to leave a legacy after the 2012 games.
  • Since the introduction of the US Department of Transport legislation on passengers with disabilities in air travel, all front line colleagues at London and US airports have completed training on the service we offer to disabled customers on flights between the UK and US.
  • All front line colleagues have completed the new disability awareness training called Flyability, which was launched in April 2011.