New Regulations for Disabled Air Travelers

DOT Gets It Together For Air Travelers With Disabilities

People with disabilities will have additional protections against discrimination when they travel by air, as the result of a new rule issued today [8 May 2008] by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) that strengthens the existing regulation implementing the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and extends it to foreign airlines.

The new rule will apply to foreign air carriers operating a flight that begins or ends in the United States. It applies to U.S. air carrier operations worldwide. Passengers flying to Europe, Asia, or other destinations on foreign air carriers now will have similar protections against discriminatory policies and be entitled to the same accommodations as passengers flying on U.S. carriers. DOT will also be better able to take enforcement action against a foreign carrier if it discriminates against an individual because of his or her disability on flights to or from the United States.