Celebrating Excellence in Airport Accessibility: A Look Back and Ahead to the 4th Airport Accessibility Award – 8th November 2023

Celebrating Excellence in Airport Accessibility: A Look Back and Ahead to the 4th Airport Accessibility Award – 8th November 2023

The Accessibility Awards have become a prominent feature of the Airport PRM Leadership Conference, and this year’s ceremony looks to build upon the success of previous editions. The 4th Accessibility Award will be chosen by the attending audience as they listen and learn about the 2024 finalists’ innovations and initiatives in their PRM service.

The awards ceremony is not just a competition but a celebration. While finalists eagerly hope to clinch the award, the event and its underlying purpose symbolize a collective milestone of evolution, flexibility, and advancement for Passengers with Reduced Mobility as industry stakeholders demonstrate their organizational commitment and share their efforts, striving for a seamless passenger experience through innovation, technology, and best practices.

A Glimpse into the Past: Recognizing winners

2020 Winner: Bologna Guglielmo Marconi Airport

Showcased cutting edge evolutions and approaches to assisted services including; video-help phones, sign language support, special attention paid to autistic passengers, and a recently opened accessible train service to the city Centre. Bologna Guglielmo Marconi Airport has made significant strides in delivering an exceptional and pleasurable service to the 44,000 passengers requiring assistance who passed through the airport in 2019.

During a precarious moment in aviation and beyond, Nazareno Ventola, CEO explained “Solidarity and adaptation have been fundamental during these times. it’s been a key lesson, to help us in recovery, we now know the operational future won’t be like before, we need to build on this experience, if we build on our learnings, we will become stronger and better. The humanization of our PRM service has always been in our DNA and this is now stronger than ever”.

 

2021 Winner: Miami International Airport

Miami International Airport secured the award due to its close relationship with local wheelchair users. Their wheelchair charging stations provide a smoother travel experience. Additionally, the MIA awareness program ensures that staff are fully trained. It is the first US airport to achieve this. The airport also features a sensory room, service animal relief rooms, a nursing room, and the Aira app.

“We have made a concerted effort at MIA to engage with the local disability community, understand their needs, and provide a smoother travel experience for them,” said Ralph Cutié, MIA Director and CEO. “We are honored to receive the 2021 Airport Accessibility Award for those efforts and to be recognized by other industry leaders from around the world.”

 

 

2022 Winner King Khalid International Airport / King Salman Center for Disability Research

This year’s prestigious recognition was awarded to the collaborative effort between King Khalid International Airport (Saudi Arabia) and the King Salman Center for Disability Research. They were honored for their creative and innovative establishment of a sensory room for passengers of all ages. This initiative was especially notable as being the first of its kind in the Middle East.

Speaking of the award, Kholoud Ibrahim AlShaya, Consultant at the King Salman Center for Disability Research and Sensory Room Project Manager, expressed her delight: “It’s a wonderful moment. We’ve been thrilled to share everything we’ve worked towards to make travel for disabled passengers a more inclusive experience. Currently, we are welcoming 800 passengers a month to the sensory room and receiving wonderful feedback, not only from the passengers but also from their families. Passengers feel safe and relaxed during their time in the room, which makes their subsequent journey much calmer and more positive. With support from Saudi Aramco, we are overjoyed that we will soon be able to expand this experience for passengers throughout the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. We will continue to develop and prioritize accessible travel in all our efforts.”

2023 Award Nominations are now open

This year’s awards will take place in Paris on November 8th 2023 and the nominations stage is currently open. Visit the nomination page for more details.

2023 Awards

Kevin KNIGHT

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