People with disabilities or reduced mobility end the elderly, nearly one European in five, may need special assistance when travelling or communicating. If you are one of them, European regulations lay down a number of measures applicable at every European Union airport to guarantee that you have equal access to air transport without discrimination and at no additional cost. No one can refuse your booking or your right to board because of your disability or mobility problem. The only exception allowed concerns potential security issues justified by a national or international regulation or a technical impossibility, such as the limited size of the aircraft.
By whatever means you book your flight, if you wish to receive special assistance you should notify the airport of your specific needs at least 48 hours before departure. Please arrive at the airport within the prescribed time limit for departure and check in at one of the contact points. This may be – as here – a reception desk, or the airline’s check-in counter. This is where the person responsible for assisting you will come to meet you. If you wish, this person will help you with the check-in formalities for flights departing from the European Union except in cases of technical impossibility and provided 48 hours advance notice is given. Airlines are obliged to transport your medical equipment and two pieces of mobility equipment at most, such as a wheel-chair and crutches at no extra cost. If necessary, the same people then will accompany you to the boarding gate to assist you with the control procedures. Just like any other passenger, you may use the facilities available at the airport.
Assistance will always be adapted to your degree of mobility. At boarding time, you will embark before the other passengers with the assistance appropriate for your needs. Your mobility equipment will be placed in the baggage hold for the flight. During the flight, it is the crew’s responsibility to assist you. If required by your disability and notified in advance, your recognized assistance dog may accompany you in the cabin. Safety instructions will be communicated to you in an appropriate manner. Finally, whether you’re arriving at your final destination or travelling through an airport, another person will meet you when your flight lands to guide you to the passengers’ exit.
Prior notification is of utmost importance. Obviously, if not notified in time, the agents concerned may only be able to provide limited assistance. If you consider that these provisions have not been respected, you may bring the matter to the air carrier or the airport operator (contact Budapest Airport at email@example.com, or use the feedback cards in terminals), or the Equal Treatment Authority and the National Transport Authority. If you are unsatisfied with their responses, you may lodge a complaint with the national enforcement body in your country or competent EU institutions (contact details as well as the detailed description of the Regulation can be found at: apr.europa.eu).
Have a nice trip!