Flying high: Virgin Atlantic to offer support for hidden disabilities

Airline, Virgin Atlantic has announced a new support system to aid passengers with hidden disabilities.

Going the extra mile to give passengers with hidden disabilities a good start to their holiday, Virgin Atlantic has launched a unique scheme to assist passengers who may need additional help in an airport environment.


Flying with autism, dementia, learning disabilities or other hidden disabilities can be challenging.

That’s why British airline Virgin Atlantic has designed a special symbol, which, when worn, will alert to staff that they may need additional assistance, guidance or, simply, more time to embark and disembark from the plane.

Launching the free service, the airline commented: “Hidden disabilities may not be instantly recognisable, but can significantly impact a person’s life and often mean that preparing for a flight can prove a stressful situation.”


The discreet symbol can be worn as a badge or carried as a bookmark inside a passport.

Upon seeing the symbol, Virgin Atlantic staff can arrange for the passenger to be escorted throughout the airport, access priority boarding, pre-selection of a seat.

Additionally, some members of staff are trained in sign language. This service would need to be booked in advance.

Geraldine Lundy, passenger accessibility manager at Virgin Atlantic added:

“We are committed to giving all customers easier access to travel. The Hidden Disabilities scheme is one of a series of initiatives that Virgin Atlantic is planning on introducing over the coming years, to help those with disabilities overcome any key challenges they may face.”

Flying to 27 destinations across the world, travelling to Disney capital of Orlando, Florida or the blue waters of Cancún, Mexico: Virgin Atlantic are paving the way for accessible travel for people living with hidden disabilities.

What has been your experience of flying with a hidden disability? Let us know on Twitter and Instagram to start a discussion.

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