1. Information on the assistance provided at the airport:
You should arrive at the airport no later than 2 hours before departure.
Assistance call points are located in the drop off area in the short stay car park, at the assistance desk in the terminal and in the designated assistance area in departures.
Assistance is available from the drop off area through to boarding the aircraft and also from arrival to pick up. This includes help with checking in, getting through security and boarding the aircraft.
Assistance provided for arriving passengers includes help with collecting baggage and going through passport control (if arriving from an international flight).
2. Information on how to obtain this assistance:
Passengers requiring assistance should notify their airline, travel agent or tour operator at least 48 hours in advance. This information is then transmitted to the airport.
On the day of travel, please present yourself at the airline check-in desk or to the Special Assistance Desk, if you have checked in online, within their stated guidelines (most airlines require you to check-in a minimum of 2 hours before departure). You will then be referred to the Special Assistance desk if you require further assistance from the Airport. During peak periods, priority will be given to those passengers who have pre-notified the airline of their requirements.
3. Information on getting to the airport (including car parking for blue badge holders):
Arriving by car:
If being dropped off by car then this should be done at the drop off area in the short stay car park. An assistance call point is located to the right in this area.
Prebook for the long stay car park on our website – belfastcityairport.com
On arrival at the airport go to the short stay car park and take a ticket from the entry barrier
Park in one of the designated parking spaces
On return from your journey you will need to go to the airport information desk to get an exit ticket from the car park. All you will need is your blue badge and confirmation of your booking
This means that you can park in the short stay car park but be charged at long stay rates
Passengers who need to take their blue badge with them to use on their trip can either leave a photocopy of the blue badge in their car or notify the information desk when they come into the terminal
Arriving by bus: There is a 600 bus service to/from the Europa Bus Station in Belfast – the bus stop is directly in front of the terminal building.
Please click here for information on Translink’s accessibility access.
Arriving by train: There is a train stop at Sydenham with a footbridge across the dual carriageway. There is then an entrance gate to the airport grounds. Once through the gate there is a shelter containing a phone link to request our courtesy vehicle to take you to the terminal. Please note that the footbridge between Sydenham Halt and Belfast City Airport means that wheelchair access is not available when travelling by train.
Please click here for information on Translink’s accessibility access.
4. Information on the layout of the airport:
From / To Distance
Departing Passenger Drop-Off Area to Assistance Desk = 200 metres 220 yards
Passenger Drop-Off Area to Check – In = 230 metres 252 yards
Check – In Security to Search Area = 120 metres 132 yards
Security Search Area to Departures = 80 metres 88 yards
Where medication in liquid form is required to be carried in hand luggage passengers will need to have a letter from their doctor their name needs to prescribed on the liquid medicine container
Passengers who are disabled or with reduced mobility are required to be security searched in accordance with direction from Department for Transport. If unable to walk or go through the metal detector, passengers will then have a hand search of their person to sufficient depth to ensure prohibited articles are not being carried. Security staff are aware of varying disabilities and will conduct any searches as efficiently and sensitively as possible. Any wheelchairs and or electric mobility aids are subjected to a visual search, hand search and an e trace detection test to ensure that prohibited articles are not being carried.
Where it is deemed necessary or on request from the customer, a private search room can be used. These are located at the rear of the central security search area.
7. Information on mobility equipment:
Passengers who are using their own mobility equipment such as manual wheelchairs, scooters or electric wheelchairs can use them until boarding the aircraft. Similarly, on arrival we will return wheelchairs at the aircraft. Information on make, weight and type of electric wheelchair needs to be advised to the airline as soon as possible.
Damage to mobility equipment
In the unlikely event that, on arrival of your flight, you find your mobility equipment is damaged or cannot be used by you safely, we will arrange and pay for local providers to supply temporary replacement equipment (albeit not necessarily on a like for like basis) or if possible by temporarily lending you our equipment.
However, liability for the damage (fixing or replacing the equipment) is with the airline.
8. Information on assistance dogs:
Assistance dogs travel with the passengers in the cabin of the aircraft. This information needs to be given to the airline, tour operator or travel agent at the time of booking the flights. If travelling on a direct international flight then procedures need to be followed in conjunction with DARD to ensure compliance with the Pet Travel Scheme.
Further information on pet travel can be found here.
Our PRM team is operational from 0400-2200 each day.
10. Autism in the Air
Belfast City Airport realise how unsettling travelling through an airport and boarding an aeroplane can be for a child on the Autistic spectrum, especially when it’s a break in their routine and they are unsure of what to expect. It can be a stressful journey for both parent and child.
However, this section will take you on the journey through Belfast City Airport, using videos to explain the stages you will go through. There are 5 videos, each lasting about 5 minutes, describing what you will see and hear on your journey. This allows you and your child to watch different aspects of the airport process. In filming these sequences, we took a ‘child’s eye’ view.
For the rest of the Autism in the Air series, please click here.
The Autism in the Air project was conducted by the Centre for Behaviour Analysis, Queens University Belfast (qub.ac.uk/cba) in collaboration with the PEAT Charity (peatni.org), the George Best Belfast City Airport (GBBCA), and Aer Lingus. The actors in these videos were staff and students from these agencies who volunteered their time free of charge, to help you and your child.
For more information about this project contact Prof. Karola Dillenburger at firstname.lastname@example.org or Nichola Booth at email@example.com.
11. Hidden Disability Lanyards
Airport journeys can be a stressful experience for many people, especially those travelling with a hidden disability such as Autism, Dementia or Alzheimer’s. That’s why we launched our Hidden Disabilities initiative in 2018.
12. Information on how to leave a complaint:
Directly to the airport: Complete the form on the ‘Contact Us’ section. Please supply all relevant information including date, flight numbers and any other information that is relevant to the complaint. Belfast City Airport can also be contacted on its social media channels – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
13. Groups Belfast City Airport Work With
PEAT NI (Parents Education as Autism Therapists) As well as helping to produce the videos in the ‘Autism in the Air’ section above, Belfast City Airport are continuing to work closely with PEAT NI as our main advisor for autism.
In May, June, July and August 2018 Belfast City Airport facilitated familiarisation visits to the airport for groups of 10-12 children on each visit.
IMTAC (Inclusive Mobility and Transport Advisory Committee)
IMTAC provide feedback throughout the year from individuals and groups who live with a wide range of disabilities. Belfast City Airport works closely with the organisation to ensure the feedback is adhered to appropriately and accordingly.
Consumer Council for Northern Ireland
The Consumer Council provide feedback throughout the year from groups and individuals living with various disabilities. Just as with IMTAC, Belfast City Airport work closely with the Consumer Council to review all feedback and ensure Belfast City Airport are doing their best to meet the needs and requirements of anyone with a disability travelling through the Airport. The Consumer Council also carries out audits on Belfast City Airport.
Mind Wise (Mental Health)
Mind Wise is a local organisation that deals with mental health issues. In 2016, we facilitated an Airport visit for a group of Mind Wise members with learning disabilities to come down and familiarise themselves with Airport surroundings and Airport processes.
Guide Dogs NI
Since 2016, Belfast City Airport, in conjunction with its airline partners, has facilitated training events for Guide Dogs NI. A group of Guide Dog puppies and their handlers visit the terminal in order to familiarise the dogs with the airport surroundings and procedures, from check-in and security right through to boarding an aircraft.
Most recently, 16 handlers and their guide dogs visited the airport on the 11th December for training, in conjunction with Flybe.
Northern Ireland Assistance Dogs (NIAD)
In early 2017, Belfast City Airport, in conjunction with Flybe, facilitated a training event for Northern Ireland Assistance Dogs. Nine medical alert dogs plus their handlers (puppy parents) attended in order to familiarise the dogs with Airport surroundings and Airport procedures, from check-in and security right through to boarding an aircraft.
Action on Hearing Loss
Belfast City Airport are currently working with Action on Hearing Loss to improve the service that they offer at the Airport to persons with hearing loss or hearing difficulties.
Belfast City Airport work with the Alzheimer’s Society in order to improve the service that they can offer passengers with Dementia or Alzheimer’s. This work is ongoing and in 2018, the Alzheimer’s society joined the Belfast City Airport Accessibility Forum.
This group has been developed to build awareness and address barriers for people with learning and communication difficulties and has launched JAM (Just A Minute) cards. In 2018, Belfast City Airport became the first airport to implement the cards across the UK.
Translink, who has excellent links to and from Belfast City Airport, has introduced JAM cards on its bus and train services.
Crohns and Colitis UK NI
On the 8th November 2018 Belfast City Airport added signage to the doors of all of their disabled toilets in line with a campaign being run by Crohns and Colitis UK to show that not all disabilities are visible.
The Urostomy Assocation provided the Belfast City Airport PRM and security teams with stoma training, in order to improve the level of care to our passengers travelling with stoma.
We have recently added Ramble Tags to the wide variety of support equipment used here at Belfast City Airport. The Ramble Tag hardness acts as guidance aid for visually impaired people, with the harness worn on the arm of the guide.
The first meeting of the Accessibility Forum took place on the 29th November 2018. The following organisations were represented: Action on Hearing loss; Alzheimers Society; Consumer Council; Crohns and Colitis UK NI; Disability Action; Guide Dogs NI; MTAC (Inclusive Mobility Transport Advisory Committee); and NI Assistance Dogs.
There were apologies from RNIB , Shopmobility and Respond (stoma) but these groups will attend the next meeting – other groups will be added as the Forum evolves.
A further meeting was held on the 31st Jan 2019 and included a full tour of the airport
Belfast City Airport will continue to work with the organisations listed above throughout 2019 and commit to seeking relationships with other disability groups to ensure they’re delivering the best service possible.