Flights and Packages

Special services: Passengers with special needs

Things you need to know

  • In order for us to best serve your needs, it is very important to inform your travel agent at the time of booking of the services you require.
  • Our cabin crew will be pleased to assist you at any time. Do not hesitate to ask for help.
  • Please keep in mind that if you are not self-reliant, you may need to travel with an escort.
  • Passengers with special needs and their escort can pre-select their seat by contacting our Information and Seat Selection Centre at (44) 20 7616 9187 / 00800-28 38 76 73
  • You must be able to use the onboard lavatory independently or with your escort. Flight attendants are unable to assist you in this matter. All our aircraft are equipped with an accessible lavatory.
  • An onboard wheelchair is available on all our aircraft to provide cabin accessibility.
  • For visually impaired passengers, a Braille safety features card is available on all our aircraft. Each row number of our aircraft is identified with a tactile row marker at the bottom of the overhead bins, so that you may independently locate your seat. Please let our cabin crew know if you would prefer our assistance; we will be happy to help you.
  • For hearing impaired passengers, both ground and in-flight staff and attendants have access to pen and paper to assist with communication.
  • Wheelchairs or mobility aids equipped with Wet-Cell batteries are no longer accepted on Air Transat flights since November 1st, 2008.
  • Air Transat cannot guarantee food free of nuts or seafood products, or that allergens won't be present in the food or snacks served on board. We strongly suggest that passengers suffering from food allergies bring their own food and snacks for the duration of the flight. Talk to your physician about the allergy emergency "Epi-pen" (epinephrine).

To prepare for your trip

Air Transat makes an effort to offer transport to all passengers. However, the acceptance of some passengers may be restricted in accordance with safety regulations. Air Transat follows the regulations and protocol set forth by Transport Canada and the Canadian Transportation Agency.

Guidelines and descriptions

A passenger is considered "handicapped" when his physical, medical, or intellectual condition requires special attention and assistance for boarding, deplaning, and during an emergency evacuation.


Ambulatory: A passenger who can move about unassisted in the cabin.

Non-Ambulatory: A passenger who cannot move about in the cabin without assistance.

Self-reliant: A passenger who is completely independent, self-sufficient, and can take care of his or her personal and physical needs in-flight; does not require any special attention other than that granted to the general public. Nevertheless, needs assistance to board and disembark the aircraft.

Non self-reliant: A passenger who cannot take care of his or her personal and physical needs and is totally dependent on the assistance of another person; requires an escort.

Escort: A person that can assist a non self-reliant passenger with his or her personal and physical needs.

Access to travel

Each of our aircraft has an accessible lavatory. Wheelchairs are also available onboard to help you access the lavatory.

Transport Canada has created a web site, Access to Travel, where passengers with special needs, their escorts, and their families can obtain additional information to help them plan their trip.

Conditions for acceptance

Air Transat will accept the determination of a person with a disability as to self-reliance. Some travellers may require an escort to travel, however, this will be determined by the traveller’s own individual circumstances.

Intellectual disability

A person with an intellectual disability is one with mental or psychological disorders, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities. These passengers and their escort, when required, may pre-board.

All travellers should discuss their individual needs with their travel agent and Air Transat. This will ensure that the needs of the traveller are known, and that Air Transat is able to meet these needs.

Air Transat will accept the determination of a person with a disability as to self-reliance. Some travellers may require an escort to travel, however, this will be determined by the traveller's own individual circumstances.

Passengers travelling with an escort

Air Transat is pleased to offer a 50% discounted rate for a passenger travelling with a person with a disability who cannot otherwise travel on his or her own. This discount is available on Florida flights only. In order for us to consider eligibility, your travel agent will have to contact us at the following address:

Please note that all requests will be evaluated by Air Transat in order to determine eligibility for this program.

Mobility aids, wheelchairs, and scooters

We suggest that passengers travelling with personal mobility aids arrive at the airport a minimum of 3 hours prior to departure to allow enough time for us to carefully prepare and load the device.

For passengers wishing to check any battery-powered equipment, we require this time interval to ensure the equipment meets all federal "dangerous goods" handling requirements.

We will disassemble the electric/battery-powered wheelchair where required.

Since November 1st, 2008, wet-cell batteries are no longer accepted on Air Transat flights. However dry-cell and gel batteries (in good condition, non-leaking) are accepted.

Air Transat cannot transport damaged or leaking batteries on any of its flights.

Pre-assigned seating for passengers with special needs

Air Transat's Information and Seat Selection Centre ((44) 20 7616 9187 / 00800-28 38 76 73) pre-assigns appropriate seating for all passengers with special needs up to two days prior to a flight departure to most destinations and up to three days prior to a flight departing from Europe. Once a passenger has identified him/herself as a person with special needs, their call will be transferred to a dedicated agent within the department. The passenger will be asked to provide any relevant information, so that together they can discuss and determine the special seating requirement. All efforts will be made to accommodate the passenger with a suitable seat most appropriate for their needs. The seat selection fees may be waived, and passengers may be asked to provide a medical letter supporting their request. We encourage our passengers with special needs to contact our Information and Seat Selection Centre directly to speak to our agents in order to discuss their specific requirements.

How we will help you

Passengers with disabilities, those with special needs, or those requesting assistance of any kind board the aircraft in priority.

Additionally, an Air Transat Agent will help you with:

  • Registration at the check-in counter
  • Moving to the boarding area
  • Pre-boarding
  • Transferring from your own mobility aid (if needed)

On-board special care

Our staff is properly trained in handling and transferring techniques for passengers with disabilities, and will help you stow and retrieve your carry-on baggage.

Arrival procedures

Where possible, we will make every attempt to have your personal wheelchair or mobility aid available at the aircraft door upon arrival.

In Cuba, all items in the cargo hold must be cleared through customs, and consequently, personal wheelchairs cannot be brought to the door of the aircraft. Passengers will be transferred from the straightback wheelchair to a company wheelchair and then to their own chair or mobility aid in the baggage hall.

An Air Transat Agent will help you with:

  • Deplaning
  • Transferring to your own mobility aid (if needed)
  • Retrieving checked baggage
  • Moving to the general public area
  • Getting to a representative of another airline for a flight connection.

Foreign language speaking travellers (other than French or English)

We suggest you notify your travel agent of your spoken language in order for them to notify us. While our staff speak French and/or English, many of our employees also speak additional languages.

Passengers who are Obese

For your comfort and safety we highly recommend that a Club Class seat be purchased through your travel agent. If a Club Class seat is unavailable, you may have to buy two (2) Economy class seats and the armrest between the seats will be placed in the vertical position. A seatbelt extension will be available, and the cabin attendant will provide you with assistance during boarding. Our Information and Seat Selection service agents will be pleased to help select the most comfortable seating for your journey. Bulkhead seating and emergency exit row are not recommended, as the armrests do not lift.

Contact us

Should you wish to contact our special services department for assistance, please e-mail us at:

An agent will contact you to discuss these arrangements.