Virgin Atlantic partners with Guide Dogs charity on inclusive travel

Virgin Atlantic partners with Guide Dogs charity on inclusive travel

All cabin crew will receive training on how to support those flying with sight loss

Virgin Atlantic and charity Guide Dogs have announced a long-term partnership that aims to create a more inclusive air travel experience for those with sight loss. 

As part of the airline’s efforts to champion the development of inclusive policies for its people and customers, Guide Dogs will provide each cabin crew member with online resources incorporated into their wider training programme.

They will also focus on the best position on the aircraft for guide dogs to rest on journeys and practical training on how to safely guide someone with sight loss with confidence, skill and empathy.  

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Virgin Atlantic chief customer and operations officer Corneel Koster said: “At Virgin Atlantic, we believe that everyone can take on the world and that means ensuring every one of our customers has the best possible experience when they fly with us.  

"Our partnership with Guide Dogs is one part of this journey and aims to broaden our understanding of those travelling with sight loss, ensuring that we make flying more accessible for everyone. We recognise there’s work to do but are looking forward to making a real impact together as our partnership evolves.”

Guide Dogs customer experience lead John Welsman added: “We’re delighted to be working with Virgin Atlantic and hope our long-term partnership will put in place improvements that will tangibly impact the lives of those with sight loss for the better. By providing advice to cabin crew and having them undertake sighted guide training, we hope blind and partially-sighted passengers will have the confidence to travel as fully and independently as possible.”

While all guide and assistance dogs have a legal right to fly, passengers who wish to travel with their guide dog should contact Virgin Atlantic’s special assistance department before flying to ensure full support is put in place and any questions can be answered.

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