Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Travel&Dining > Special Interest Travel > Disability Travel
Reload this Page > British Airways Failure to provide requested wheelchair

British Airways Failure to provide requested wheelchair

Reply

Old Oct 5, 17, 10:22 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 10
British Airways Failure to provide requested wheelchair

ON a recent flight from Basel to London Heathrow, I requested a wheelchair. When we arrived I asked the crew about the wheelchair. They had no knowledge and asked whether I could get down the steps and onto a transport bus. I said that with the help of my companion I could. I was assured that a wheelchair would be waiting when the bus arrived. There was no wheelchair and no British airways agent. Fortunately, my companion and I found Heathrow personnel who helped us. But I am outraged that there was so little regard to the welfare of a physically compromised passenger. It was just luck that I am able with help to cope; I keep thinking of what might have happened had I been just slightly less physically able or if my leg had been having a bad day. I wrote British Airways customer service but have not received any reply. I would appreciate any additional information on appropriate next steps to try to prevent this from re-occurring and on what might be appropriate compensation from British Airways (either monetary or avios points).
Many thanks.
souri1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 5, 17, 10:29 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Programs: AA
Posts: 8,464
Unfortunately at LHR, the wheelchair service is provided by the airport, not British Airways. And unfortunately this is not the first report of that service failing at their job. You can try writing the airport authority, but you definitely won't get any compensation from them.
souri1 likes this.
wrp96 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 5, 17, 11:02 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: London, United Kingdom
Programs: British Airways Gold
Posts: 1,459
I would recommend you let it go, however 'outraged' you may be

As has already been said, the responsibility for wheelchair provision is with the airport. There little point in taking any next steps, you are unlikely to achieve anything or get any compensation.
ajeleonard is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 5, 17, 11:33 am
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 10
Thanks for the responses. I will, of course, let it go, but it does seem a shame not to be able to redress this problem for future passengers who may need it more than I do.
souri1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 5, 17, 1:31 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: IAD
Programs: United MP
Posts: 7,079
When you said you could walk down the stairs with help, you gave them a reason to not provide a chair. They assign a code based on what you say you need. There's a thread here somewhere that explains the codes.
DeafFlyer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 6, 17, 5:36 am
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 10
Thanks, again.
souri1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 6, 17, 9:26 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: IAD
Programs: United MP
Posts: 7,079
Originally Posted by souri1 View Post
Thanks, again.
I now have time, so I found this post for you: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/8232730-post10.html
DeafFlyer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 6, 17, 10:44 am
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 10
How kind of you to take the time--thanks very much. Very good information!
souri1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 12, 17, 7:02 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: central California
Posts: 143
This has happened to me several times...and the wheelchairs are not provided by the airline but by ground services. I'd take my own wheelchair but it's really expensive and I really don't want to pay to replace or repair a custom chair of mine, instead I use a walker on my travels since it's already broken in
wmweeza is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 13, 17, 11:26 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: IAD
Programs: United MP
Posts: 7,079
What do you mean about bringing your own chair being expensive? I always bring my own for free.
DeafFlyer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 13, 17, 11:32 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: ORD
Programs: US Air, UA BA LH AI DELTA MARRIOTT CHOICE SGP
Posts: 8,097
Originally Posted by wrp96 View Post
Unfortunately at LHR, the wheelchair service is provided by the airport, not British Airways. And unfortunately this is not the first report of that service failing at their job. You can try writing the airport authority, but you definitely won't get any compensation from them.
Originally Posted by ajeleonard View Post
I would recommend you let it go, however 'outraged' you may be

As has already been said, the responsibility for wheelchair provision is with the airport. There little point in taking any next steps, you are unlikely to achieve anything or get any compensation.
If OP asked for a wheel chair while checking in atBasel, the airline has to first transmit that to its own reps in LHR who then asks the "LHR" people to set one up ?
HMPS is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 13, 17, 12:16 pm
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 10
I appreciate all the feedback. I still think there should be a better system to ensure coordination between airline and ground services and some method of givings incentives or penalties to make sure ground services implement the requests. Thanks again for all the good information!
souri1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 13, 17, 8:25 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: ORD
Programs: US Air, UA BA LH AI DELTA MARRIOTT CHOICE SGP
Posts: 8,097
Originally Posted by souri1 View Post
I appreciate all the feedback. I still think there should be a better system to ensure coordination between airline and ground services and some method of givings incentives or penalties to make sure ground services implement the requests. Thanks again for all the good information!
A a manger once told us " your incentive for doing your job is you get to keep your job "
HMPS is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 14, 17, 6:59 pm
  #14  
Moderator: Women Travelers and Disability Travel
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: DEN
Posts: 1,906
Originally Posted by DeafFlyer View Post
What do you mean about bringing your own chair being expensive? I always bring my own for free.
I think wmweeza is concerned about the possibility of damage to the (expensive) chair, not about any fee for bringing a wheelchair.
Katja is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 17, 17, 8:17 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: IAD
Programs: United MP
Posts: 7,079
Originally Posted by Katja View Post
I think wmweeza is concerned about the possibility of damage to the (expensive) chair, not about any fee for bringing a wheelchair.
Oh I see. In that case: Airlines do have to fix damages they cause. In the case of international flights, though, I understand there is a maximum amount they will pay. Damages above that would be your problem.

I remember a guy saying he would take photos of his chair, with that day's newspaper, at the airport, proving that everything was fine before the airline got their claws on it.
DeafFlyer is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread