East Midlands Airport among the best for accessibility


East Midlands Airport (EMA) has been shortlisted in a national award for its excellence in improving accessibility for its customers.

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The Airport Honour Awards have shortlisted EMA in the Accessible Airport category in recognition of its exceptional service and high customer satisfaction, with over 91% of customers using the Assisted Travel service rating their experience as ‘good’ or very good’ in 2022-23.

EMA’s in-house Assisted Travel team works with an independently chaired Accessibility Forum of disabled people who advise on customer experience, infrastructure and recruitment. In consultation with the Forum, the airport has implemented:

·       Significant investment in Assisted Travel equipment and fleet of vehicles

·       Infrastructure changes made to a high-traffic walkway, making the space more accessible, including installing handrails

·       New landside wayfinding to help customers find or summon Assisted Travel and locate blue badge parking spaces

·       An airside ‘Quiet Room’ for those wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of the terminal

·       A WhatsApp ‘live chat’ service for Assisted Travel customers and adoption of the British Sign Language interpretation app SignLive.

All Customer Services staff at EMA are given training in disability equality to ensure they understand customers’ lived experience of disability. This year the airport joined the ACI ASQ programme which benchmarks customer sentiment with similar airports, and encourages customer feedback for its Assisted Travel service.

EMA’s Customer & Planning Director Mike Grimes says: “We’re delighted to have been shortlisted for the Accessible Airport Award. We’re very proud of our Assisted Travel service and how well liked it is by the people who use it. As well as physical improvements in the airport, we are making good use of technology to help ensure that all passengers have a warm welcome and equal access to air travel from East Midlands Airport.”

The Airport Honour Awards will be held as part of the International Airport Summit in Kensington on November 14-15.