WASHINGTON, DC – The Association for Airline Passenger Rights, (AAPR) today announced its 1st Annual Air Travel Accessibility Conference, designed to identify and discuss ways to improve accessible air travel for passengers with special needs. AAPR defines special needs passengers as Wounded Warriors, passengers with disabilities, passengers of size and senior citizens needing assistance. The conference will be held in Washington, DC at the Westin Washington DC City Center on Tuesday, December 10, 2013.
AAPR is the only airline consumer rights group that includes “accessibility ” as one of its stated objectives. Accessibility has increasingly gained the attention of the U.S. Department of Transportation, evidenced by the number of fines over the last few years against airlines for violating the Air Carrier Access Act. In fact, consumer complaints among passengers with disabilities are on the rise, according to the Aviation Consumer Protection & Enforcement (ACPE).
“Flying isn’t easy anymore, especially for travelers with special needs,” said Brandon M. Macsata, Executive Director of the Association for Airline Passenger Rights. “Our groundbreaking conference will convene various aviation, business, disability, government and related stakeholder groups for presentations by leading experts, as well as provide a platform for discussions on how the aviation industry can best improve accessibility for passengers with special needs.”
Macsata said that there is a convincingly strong business case for airports, airlines and other travel services improving their accessibility; annually, passengers with special needs do a lot of traveling, and they’re looking to spend their money where they know that their needs are being met.