Stay connected

Disability and mobility assistance

Lady  at beach.

The service provided to Persons with Reduced Mobility (PRM) is governed by EU and US legislation. This includes reduced mobility in the widest sense, e.g. intellectual or physical impairments, age or any other cause of disability.

Within the EU, airport operators are responsible for providing assistance to anyone with a disability during their time at the airport. This means as an airline, we need to provide the airport operator with advance information about customers' travel requirements so they can offer the appropriate level of service.

collapsedshowWhat you need to do

Please ensure you capture all customer assistance needs in the PNR. You can find some important information for handling these bookings below.. Find out more details about this service on ba.com

 If you need additional guidance, please contact Trade Support

What cabin crew can do to help customers

Depending on customers' requirements, our cabin crew can help them:

  • store and retrieve their hand baggage
  • familiarise themselves with their seat and surrounding area
  • move between their seat and the washroom
  • open any packaging of their on-board meal, identify their  food and layout on the tray 

They will also be able to provide customers with essential flight information. On flights to or from the US, they will provide all flight information in a way that meets customers' needs.

What customers will need to take care of themselves

During their journey, customers will need to look after:

  • personal care during the flight, such as feeding and medicating
  • personal care in the washroom
  • the needs of their assistance dog

Safety assistant

Customers will need to travel with a safety assistant if they need help to do any of the following:

  • lift themselves, e.g. from/to their seat
  • reach an emergency exit unaided
  • communicate with the crew on safety matters
  • unfasten their seat belt
  • retrieve and fit a life jacket
  • fit an oxygen mask
collapsedshowKeywords

Mobility and wheelchair assistance
Keyword Description Seating
WCHR Service 1

Customers can ascend/descend steps, make their own way to/from the cabin seat and walk within the aircraft. However, they cannot walk long distances.

Assistance to and from the aircraft; depending on the airport, this will be either by electric buggy or airport wheelchair.

Pre-assigned seating is not automatically offered

 

 WCHS Service 2

Customers cannot ascend/descend steps but are able to make their own way to/from the cabin seat and walk within the aircraft.

Assistance to and from the aircraft; depending on the airport, this will be either by electric buggy or airport wheelchair.

Help with stairs if the aircraft is parked away from the terminal building.

Pre-assigned seating is offered from the time of booking

 

WCHC Service 3

Customers are completely immobile and can be either self-reliant or non self-reliant.
Assistance to and from the aircraft; depending on the airport, this will be either by electric buggy or airport wheelchair.
Help with stairs if the aircraft is parked away from the terminal building.
Use of the on-board wheelchair to get to/from their seat and to move around the cabin during the flight. Customers will need to have enough upper body strength to lift themselves between their seat and the on-board wheelchair, otherwise they will need to travel with a safety assistant who can help them with that.

Pre-assigned seating is offered from the time of booking

 

WCBD

Motorised wheelchair powered by dry cell battery

Use only in conjunction with either WCHR, WCHS or WCHC - does not generate an assistance request if entered in isolation.

 n/a

 

 WCBW

Motorised wheelchair powered by wet cell battery

Use only in conjunction with either WCHR, WCHS or WCHC - does not generate an assistance request if entered in isolation.

 n/a

 

WCLB

Motorised wheelchair powered by lithium battery

Use only in conjunction with either WCHR, WCHS or WCHC - does not generate an assistance request if entered in isolation.

If your GDS doesn't support this code, use WCBD including the word LITHIUM, e.g. LITHIUM-3232KGS 164X32X24CM REMOVABLE PLUG

 n/a

 

WCMP

Manual wheelchair

Use only in conjunction with either WCHR, WCHS or WCHC - does not generate an assistance request if entered in isolation.

 n/a

 

 

Other disability-related keywords
Keyword Description Seating
DPNA

Customers with a developmental impairment

Pre-assigned seating is not automatically offered

DEAF

Customers with a hearing impairment

Pre-assigned seating is offered from the time of booking.

Customers can choose seat, however an aisle seat is recommended to facilitate assistance by cabin crew.

BLND

Customers with a visual impairment

Pre-assigned seating is offered from the time of booking

DSAB

This code can be added if the customer has requested WCHR or DPNA assistance, or just requires disability seating with no other assistance

Pre-assigned seating is offered when this code is added by a BA agent

PETC

Customers travelling with an assistance dog

Seating is pre-assigned to ensure there is an extra free seat next to the customer

collapsedshowRequesting wheelchair and mobility assistance
  1. Add the keyword of the required level of assistance (as above). There are three levels to choose from: Service 1 (WCHR), Service 2 (WCHS) and Service 3 (WCHC).
  2. Add the keyword describing the type of wheelchair (e.g. WCBW), followed by the weight and dimensions. We can accommodate the following maximum dimensions for wheelchairs and mobility aids:

Flights to and from Length Width Height
UK (except London City) and Europe 140cm (55.1in) 85cm (33.5in) 106cm (41.7in)
London (dimensions for upright position) 74cm (29.6in) 94cm (37.6in) 73cm (29.2)
Rest of the world

140cm (55.1in)

85cm (33.5in) 152cm (59.8in)

The maximum weight for wheelchairs or mobility aids is 250kg.

If the request has been entered correctly, the status should automatically change from NN to KK. This status change indicates that your request has been acknowledged, however we will still notify the service provider even if the request remains as NN.

collapsedshowGDS entry examples
Amadeus SRWCHC
SRWCBD-32KGS 164X32X24CM REMOVABLE PLUG
Sabre 3WCHR/ELDERLY-1.1
3WCMP/12KGS 154X23X16CM -1.1
Galileo 3I.WCHS*HIP REPLACEMENT
3I.WCBW*26KGS 154X42X24CM KEY
Worldspan 3SAN1.1BLND PARTIALLY SIGHTED
Apollo =:3DPNA
collapsedshowSeating

Customers can reserve their seat free of charge if they have a specific seating requirement because of their disability. This doesn't include customers with a speech impairment, who do not require specific seating as defined by Government Affairs, Equality & Diversity and British Airways Health Services.

It is important to always include the correct keywords in the PNR, even if the customer is taking their own wheelchair.

Once the request for disability assistance has been updated in the PNR you will be able to access the seat maps and pre-assign a seat for your customers. If no seats are showing, please

 contact Trade Support to discuss the seating options available.

If the customer prefers, they can reserve their seat free of charge themselves through Manage My Booking on ba.com. This is possible in most cases and available from the time of booking on a first come, first served basis. Please ensure you have provided customers with their British Airways booking reference so they're able to do this.