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United Adds Braille Markings on a Dozen Aircraft

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Victoria M. Walker
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Victoria M. Walker

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Victoria holds a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the Howard University School of Communications and is an award-winning journalist, travel reporter, and the founder of the “Carrying On with Victoria...
Edited by: Keri Stooksbury
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Keri Stooksbury

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With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now editor-in-chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...

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United Airlines says it has become the first U.S. airline to add Braille to its aircraft.

Here’s what you need to know.

Entire Mainline Fleet Is Expected To Be Equipped by 2026

United says roughly a dozen of its aircraft are now equipped with Braille markings. The markings are on individual rows and seat numbers, as well as inside and outside lavatories.

The airline says its entire mainline fleet will be equipped by 2026 and says it’s working with disability advocacy groups to explore utilizing other navigational aids, such as raised letters, numbers, and arrows on its planes. The website for accessible travel on United also details how to travel with service animals and request assistance at the airport and for a flight.

“Finding your seat on a plane or getting to the restroom is something most of us take for granted, but for millions of our customers, it can be a challenge to do independently,” said Linda Jojo, Executive Vice President, Chief Customer Officer at United Airlines. “By adding more tactile signage throughout our interiors, we’re making the flying experience more inclusive and accessible, and that’s good for everyone.”

United braille lavatory
Image Credit: United

This news comes amid a push from U.S. airlines to make flying easier for passengers with disabilities. The Department of Transportation (DOT) estimated that roughly 27 million passengers with disabilities traveled by air in 2019.

Bottom Line:

United says it redesigned its mobile app to add features such as color contrast for passengers with visual disabilities. Additionally, Delta Air Lines last month unveiled a prototype of a wheelchair-friendly seat.

Airline Passengers With Disabilities Bill of Rights

The DOT last year published a Bill of Rights for passengers with disabilities, which says that travelers must have:

  • The Right to Be Treated with Dignity and Respect
  • The Right to Receive Information About Services and Aircraft Capabilities and Limitations
  • The Right to Receive Information in an Accessible Format
  • The Right to Accessible Airport Facilities
  • The Right to Assistance at Airports
  • The Right to Assistance on the Aircraft
  • The Right to Travel with an Assistive Device or Service Animal
  • The Right to Receive Seating Accommodations
  • The Right to Accessible Aircraft Features
  • The Right to Resolution of a Disability-Related Issue

The DOT says that both airlines and U.S. airport operators are responsible for the accessibility
of airport facilities.

Final Thoughts

This is really positive news from United Airlines. Airlines in recent years have begun to recognize the importance of accessibility for all passengers, not just at the airport but onboard the aircraft as well.

We hope to see other features such as this in the near future!

Victoria M. Walker's image

About Victoria M. Walker

Victoria holds a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the Howard University School of Communications and is an award-winning journalist, travel reporter, and the founder of the “Carrying On with Victoria M. Walker” newsletter.

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