DGCA asks airlines, airports to pay special attention to elderly, first timers
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has asked airlines and airports to take special care of senior citizens, pregnant women, passengers with disability and first time travellers. In a circular issued on August 2, the DGCA has asked airports to ensure such passengers get automated buggies free of charge in the terminal building to facilitate their access to boarding gates located beyond reasonable walking distance.
All airports having annual aircraft movements of 50,000 or more will have to follow this, which means at least ten airports in the country such as Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Ahmadabad will have to follow the order.
“Airport operators shall provide small trolleys after security check for carriage of hand baggage (permitted as per regulation) up to the boarding gate. The airport operator shall adequately display information regarding availability of automated buggies and small trolleys in the terminal building at prominent locations, including dos and don’ts regarding the same. This shall also be published on the website of the airport operator,” the DGCA said in the circular.
Focusing on courteous behaviour, the airlines have been asked to ensure that all their ground staff engaged in passenger handling should extend extremely polite and courteous behaviour towards travellers.
“They shall render all assistance to facilitate their travel,” the DGCA said. The
DGCA said that air transportation is steadily becoming a major activity either for business or leisure. Although the primary objective of all the stakeholders is to provide safe, efficient and reliable air transportation, the improvement in facilities and service standards is much needed.
“There is also a need to synergise the capabilities and services offered by multiple stakeholders so as to create a much more passenger friendly environment in aviation. With the expansion of airports, distances to check-in counters, security hold area and boarding gate has increased manifold requiring passengers to carry their cabin baggage to cover long distances,” the circular reads.
“Most of the stakeholders involved in providing facilities to the passengers at the airport have resorted to outsourcing of services to vendors having high attrition rate, resulting in inability in to provide quality services to the passengers. Further, the passengers remain most unattended after the check-in is completed till they arrive at the boarding point, which has caused an increase in the number of passenger complaints in the recent past,” the circular said.