Aviation and Shipping
This section contains information for disabled people with regard to travel by air or sea. It also contains information for those working in these industries on how they can improve their services to disabled people.
Access to aviation and shipping is governed by international laws and standards. Since 2007, European law has given rights to disabled people when travelling by air. This will ensure a consistent and seamless service from airlines and airports across Europe. Similar European law protecting disabled people when travelling by ship is expected in the future.
The UK Disability Discrimination Act 1995 applies to air and sea travel in relation to the use of booking services and airport or port facilities and services. The actual means of transport – the aircraft or ship – is exempt from the Act’s provisions. So, for example, shops and check-in facilities in the airport or port are covered by the Act, but on-board services or entertainment are not.
The purpose of this Code of Practice is to improve the accessibility of air travel to disabled people and people with reduced mobility. It is aimed at all those involved in providing services related to air travel and will help them to meet their legal obligations. It is not intended as a guide for passengers. For copies of the Code in other formats, please contact AEU@dft.gsi.gov.uk
- 16 January 2006
- Last update:
- 23 July 2008
A step by step guide for disabled and less mobile passengers on their rights when they travel by air. [External website]
Findings of a study by TRL to assess UK aviation industry's compliance with the voluntary Code of Practice 'Access to Air Travel for Disabled People'.
- 03 August 2006
2000 guidance produced by the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee on meeting the needs of disabled people.
2006 report which evaluates the degree to which the shipping industry has complied with the voluntary guidance.
For related documents, pages and internet links, see the column on the right.