Safety, Empowerment, and Dignity: Improving the Airport Journey of Customers Using Wheelchairs

For wheelchair users, the airport experience can often be challenging and frustrating. A survey conducted by Paralyzed Veterans of America in 2022 found common issues include negotiating check-in, locating an agent for assistance if needed, clearing security, navigating to the gate, and boarding the aircraft. This experience is often complicated by the fact that users may be separated from their wheelchair, and, during this time, the wheelchair may be lost, damaged, or delayed. ACRP Research Report 210: Innovative Solutions to Facilitate Accessibility for Airport Travelers with Disabilities (2020) and other research have identified many of these barriers, but it is unclear if current strategies to address these challenges are successful and if additional strategies may be needed. Research is needed to develop resources to assess current practices and improve the wheelchair user experience at airports with safety, empowerment, and dignity. The objective of this research is to develop a handbook to help airport industry practitioners meet the needs of wheelchair users and enhance their personal safety, empowerment, and dignity. The handbook should allow practitioners to adapt guidelines and recommended practices to their unique conditions (e.g., airport size, resource availability, governance structure, and applicable laws).


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $425000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 07-23

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Airport Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Aviation Administration

    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20591
  • Project Managers:

    Navarrete, Joseph

  • Start Date: 20240214
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01889821
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 07-23
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: Aug 10 2023 10:01AM