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A Quick Look at Disability Flight Discounts

Last updated: December 4, 2023

Traveling can be an enriching experience, offering opportunities to explore new cultures, meet diverse people, and create lasting memories. However, for individuals with disabilities, navigating the complexities of travel can present unique challenges. Understanding this, many airlines and travel organizations have implemented disability flight discounts to make travel more accessible and affordable for those with special needs. 

This article will give you an overview of disability flight discounts, how they work, and other perks from airlines that benefit travelers with disabilities. Whether you're planning your next adventure or seeking information for a loved one, our exploration of disability flight discounts offers valuable insights into making travel more inclusive and enjoyable for everyone.

Overview of Airlines Providing Disability Flight Discounts 

Fast Facts

“For travel discounts, airlines usually require advance notice to arrange special accommodations and services.”

Many airlines offer disability flight discounts to passengers with disabilities. These discounts are typically available to passengers with various disabilities, including physical, mental, intellectual, and sensory impairments. The specific eligibility requirements and the amount of the discount vary from airline to airline.

Other Airline Perks for Disabled Passengers


For United Airlines flights, call their disability desk (800-228-2744) 48 hours before flying if using an assistive device. Inform them of any special needs during reservation for assistance with mobility and boarding. Wheelchairs are available at airports, and on-board assistance is provided for larger aircraft. Reserve disability-accessible seats 24 hours in advance. Check assistive devices at the counter or gate, with onboard storage for a collapsible wheelchair. Check United’s disability policies for more information.[1]


Delta Airlines provides boarding and flight assistance for passengers with disabilities, including movable aisle armrests, wheelchair storage, and accessible lavatories on larger aircraft. If you need a seat with a movable armrest, request a change with the gate or in-flight staff. Delta offers space for one personal wheelchair per flight on a first-come basis, with size and weight restrictions, or you can check your wheelchair at the counter or gate. Every Delta plane has an on-board wheelchair for lavatory access. Refer to Delta’s disability policies for more information.[2]

American Airlines

When booking with American Airlines, request a wheelchair for gate access and connections. Alert airport staff if you need mobility assistance upon arrival or for connections. Electric carts are available at some airports. Flight attendants assist with on-board wheelchair use. Each jet has space for one collapsible wheelchair and movable aisle armrest seats. Non-collapsible wheelchairs or scooters can be checked in. For comprehensive information, refer to American Airlines’ disability policies.[3]

US Airways

For US Airways flights, call 800-428-4322 (TTY 800-245-2966) 24 hours before departure for special seating due to mobility disabilities. Request an on-board wheelchair 48 hours in advance. The airline assists with pre-boarding, boarding, deplaning, and stowing carry-ons, and provides wheelchair services at destinations or connections. Each aircraft accommodates one collapsible wheelchair, while non-collapsible ones can be checked. For full details, refer to US Airways' disability policies.[4] 

Air Canada

Inform Air Canada about any special needs or disabilities when booking. Services include boarding assistance, airport mobility help, and assistance with meals. Notify them 48 hours in advance for traveling with assistive devices. For detailed needs, contact their medical desk at 888-247-2262. Wheelchairs and mobility devices can be checked or brought on board if space allows, and on-board wheelchairs are available. Refer to Air Canada’s disability policies for more details. [5]

Things to Keep In Mind When Booking a Flight With a Disability

Fast Facts

“To avail of these discounts, proof of disability, such as a certificate or a doctor's note, is often required.”

  • Book your flight in advance. This will give the airline time to make any necessary accommodations.

  • Provide the airline with advance notice of your disability. This will help the airline to ensure that you have a smooth and comfortable travel experience.

  • Be aware of the airline's policies on assistive devices. Some airlines may have restrictions on the type or size of assistive devices that you can bring on board.

  • Be prepared to show documentation of your disability. You may be asked to show your disability certificate or other documentation to the airline.

  • If you have any questions, contact the airline directly. The airline's customer service representatives will be happy to assist you.

In summary, some airlines offer disability flight discounts and specialized services to make travel more accessible for individuals with disabilities. These efforts signify a commitment to inclusivity, allowing everyone to enjoy the benefits of travel. When planning your journey, it's important to book early, communicate your needs clearly, and understand each airline's policies on assistive devices. Utilizing these resources can greatly enhance the travel experience for passengers with disabilities, ensuring a more inclusive and comfortable journey for all.

Want to learn more about disabilities? Discover what is considered a permanent disability in this blog.

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Chloe Powers
Chloe works with policymakers on behalf of Disability Help to support their work at a strategic level, ensuring the conditions are in place for creative individuals and organizations to grow, reach their potential and effect relevant, sustainable change.
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