Do you need special assistance at Gatwick?
The airport has many services and facilities on offer to help passengers who may need a little extra help or who have specific requirements and their aim is to be the UK’s most accessible airport, giving everybody an equal opportunity to fly. One new initiative which they have recently launched, is a new system being trialled for six months, in partnership with the airport’s biggest airline easyJet, to improve accessibility for blind or partially sighted passengers; the Aira app.
The Aira app for the blind and visually impaired
Blind and visually-impaired passengers at Gatwick can now call a professionally-trained agent 24 hours a day who will, by using the camera on the passenger’s mobile phone, guide them through the airport help them read documents and flight information, shop and find their bag on the luggage carousel.
The free, on-demand service can be accessed through the Aira app on a smartphone and will help to give blind and visually impaired passengers more independence to move through and enjoy the facilities at the airport. The Aira system is purposely straightforward and simple to use and the trained agents can help passengers find specific airport locations such as boarding gates, shops and restaurants or the airport’s special assistance facilities. The system can also be used to get the latest information on a passenger’s individual journey plans such as flight information and onward connections, read menus in restaurants, prices and offers in shops or even help finding baggage on reclaim belts.
In addition to the Aira app, Gatwick has been working with a number of charities to identify how they can improve the airport experience for vulnerable passengers who may not want to share details of their hidden disabilities which is why they have introduced the hidden disability lanyard which is a special lanyard recognised by staff who understand that you may need a little extra help or time.
Gatwick’s sensory room
Gatwick is also the first UK airport to open a sensory room. It is a calming and relaxing environment designed for passengers with disabilities like autism, dementia or cognitive impairment who will benefit from a safe and distracting place when in unfamiliar surroundings. It is free to use, and availability is on a first come, first served basis to passengers departing from the North Terminal.
Special assistance desks
Booking assistance is advisable but if you are unable to there are many help points around the airport and on the forecourts or you can go straight to the special assistance desks located in both the North and South Terminal check-in areas.
If you do have special needs find out just how Gatwick Airport can help you with your journey through the airport.
And remember booking your airport parking with I Love meet and greet will ensure that one of our drivers will meet you on the forecourt directly outside the terminal building and will assist you with your luggage and help you on your way into the airport.