Cookie PolicyBy continuing to browse our site, you are consenting to the use of cookies. Please click the policy link to learn more about cookies.
OK
[ English ]
Skip to main content

Special Needs

Special Needs

Passengers with disabilities can look forward to a safe and comfortable journey with Emirates; we will be pleased to assist you in any way we can.

We recommend that you notify us at the time of booking, or at least 48 hours prior to your flight, of any special assistance you would like us to provide before, during, or after your flight.

Please consider the following information as guidance only. Should you require special assistance, please contact your travel agent, or contact your local Emirates office directly.

Deaf or hearing impaired passengersBlind or visually impaired passengers
Assistive DevicesPre-Boarding Assistance
Assistance and Accessibility In-flightOxygen Information
CPAP/PAP DevicesPassengers requiring escorts
Service DogsComplaint Resolution Officials for Customers with Special Needs

Deaf or hearing impaired passengers

Making a booking

If you are deaf or hearing impaired and require special assistance during your journey with us, please let us know at the time of booking. If you have booked your flight on emirates.com or with another on-line booking agency, please contact your local Emirates office after booking to advise us of your requirements.

In the USA and Canada, you may contact us on our TTY number.

At the airport

We have monitors that display flight information for all our passengers, and most gate areas have electronic displays that indicate specific flight information. Our gate agents will provide verbal flight information including boarding announcements and notice of any flight delay or gate changes. Please inform our check-in agent if you are deaf or hearing impaired so that we can provide special assistance to you in the event that your flight is delayed, or if the departure gate is changed after you have checked-in.

On board

Individual safety briefings are given to any customer who requests them. Included in the briefing is an explanation of safety procedures, exit locations, and communication regarding the most appropriate way to provide assistance to you in accordance with your needs.

  • A Flight Attendant will provide updates to you during the flight when announcements are made.
  • Onboard headphones are compatible with standard hearing aids switched to the 'T' position.
  • On all Emirates aircraft, pre-recorded video aircraft safety briefings are captioned in both English and Arabic. We also offer many movies which are closed captioned on Emirates aircraft equipped with the ice Digital Widescreen in-flight entertainment system.

ice Digital Widescreen - Closed Captions on movies

Closed Captioning, the technology that shows actors' dialogue as well as referencing sound effects on a movie, is available in English on ice Digital Widescreen equipped aircraft only. Each month we typically offer around 30 new release movies with Closed Captions.

To explore specific services and amenities available on your next trip with Emirates, please use service finder.

Blind or visually impaired passengers

Making a booking

If you are blind or visually impaired and require guidance assistance or directions upon arrival at the airport or any other special assistance during your journey with us, please let us know at the time of booking. If you have booked your flight on emirates.com or with another on-line booking agency, please contact your local Emirates office after booking to advise us of your requirements.

At the Airport

A Meet and Assist Service is available to guide you to and from the aircraft gate – or if you prefer, you may make use of wheelchair assistance. At your request, we can also provide you with flight connection and transfer assistance.

Onboard

Individual safety briefings are given to any customer who requests them. Included in the briefing is an explanation of safety procedures, exit locations, and communication regarding the most appropriate way to provide assistance to you in accordance with your needs.

  • Every Emirates aircraft comes equipped with Safety Briefing Cards printed in Braille for our customers who have vision disabilities.
  • Our Flight Attendants will read to you the meal menu options, identify food items and placement on your tray and assist with opening packages upon request.
  • Due to safety regulations you will not be allocated an exit row seat.

Assistive Devices

Airport Wheelchairs

We have wheelchairs available for use at all airport locations and can assist you with transportation from check-in to the boarding gate, making connections (if applicable) and from the aircraft to the arrivals hall at your destination. Please request this service when making your booking, and upon arrival at the airport notify one of our airport service agents that you require a wheelchair.

Travelling with your own wheelchair or assistive device

  • Emirates accepts motorised and non-motorised wheelchairs and assistive devices for transport. However, there are some restrictions on size and weight that you should discuss with your booking agent at the time of booking.
  • We provide storage for one passenger's collapsible, manual wheelchair in the aircraft cabin on many Emirates aircraft on a first-come first-served basis, if you request for pre-boarding assistance at the departure gate. If you wish to take your own wheelchair to the gate, you must arrive at the gate at least 60 minutes prior to departure. Wheelchairs or assistive devices that are too large or heavy to be accommodated in the aircraft cabin will be carried in the hold.
  • Non-collapsible wheelchairs, electric wheelchairs, and power scooters are accepted as checked baggage. These items can be checked at the main check-in counter.
  • If you travel with a battery-powered wheelchair or other mobility aid, certain safeguards must be taken before you travel. Please provide us with at least 48 hours advance notice of your requirement and advise us of the dimensions and weight, and the type of battery used for your equipment. Also, be sure to check in at the airport at least one hour ahead of scheduled check-in time so that we can ensure that your equipment is transported in accordance with all dangerous goods handling requirements.

    When necessary, we will disassemble and reassemble wheelchairs or assistive devices for customers when they travel. If we do need to disassemble your wheelchair, our employees will need instructions: please bring the manufacturer’s instructions with you to the airport. You will be asked to check the wheelchair at the check-in area and you will need to be present during the disassembly/reassembly of the device.
  • Medical equipment and up to two assistive devices which are approved for transportation in cabin do not count towards the number of carry-on baggage a passenger is allowed free of charge.
  • Canes/crutches must be stowed under your seat prior to take-off and landing. The cane or crutches must lie flat on the floor and should not block emergency exits or protrude into the aisle.

Pre-Boarding Assistance

Passengers with special needs will be provided with pre-boarding assistance upon request, allowing the opportunity to be seated prior to general boarding.

Assistance and Accessibility In-flight

On board wheelchair

Onboard wheelchairs designed to fit in the aisle of our aircraft are available on all Emirates flights to assist non-ambulatory passengers to move to and from the aircraft lavatory.

Stowage of Carry-on items

Assistance with stowing and retrieval of carry-on items and small assistive devices permitted to be carried on board the aircraft is furnished upon request.

Movable Aisle Armrests

We provide movable aisle armrest seats so passengers who use aisle chairs to board the aircraft can more easily transfer into their seats. The number and locations of movable aisle armrest seats may vary by aircraft type. You may select a seat with a moveable armrest through your reservations agent or, where available, during online check-in using the seat map for your flight on emirates.com.

Oxygen Information

Therapeutic Oxygen

Emirates can provide onboard therapeutic oxygen, subject to availability and at least 48 hours advance notice being given of this requirement to an Emirates reservations agent. A doctor’s certificate is required advising of the litres per minute flow rate. There is no charge for this service.

Customer-owned Portable Oxygen Concentrators

Approved portable oxygen concentrators (POCs) are permitted on board for use during your flight and do not count towards your carry-on baggage limit. Currently approved models are:

  • Airsep Focus
  • AirSep Free Style
  • Airsep Free Style 5
  • Airsep Lifestyle
  • Delphi.RS-00400
  • DeVilbiss Healthcare iGo
  • Inogen One
  • Inogen One G2
  • Inogen One G3
  • Inova Labs LifeChoice
  • Inova Labs Lifechoice Activox
  • International Biophysics03 Corporation's LifeChoice
  • Invacare Solo2
  • Invacare XPO2
  • Oxlife Independence
  • Oxus RS-0400
  • Oxygen Concentrator
  • Oxywell Oxygen System (model 4000)
  • Precision Medical EasyPulse
  • Respironics EverGo
  • Respironics SimplyGO
  • SeQual Technologies, Inc.’s eQuinox Oxygen System (model 4000)
  • SeQuel Eclipse
  • SeQuel SAROS
  • VBOX, Inc.’s Trooper

In accordance with UAE GCAA regulations, if you wish to use a POC on board your flight you must submit to an Emirates reservations agent a physician’s statement in English or with an English translation (at least 48 hours prior to travel) that:

  • states that you have the physical and cognitive ability to see, hear and understand the device’s aural and visual cautions and warnings and are able to take appropriate action, without assistance, in response to those cautions and warnings; and
  • states whether or not oxygen use is medically necessary for all or a portion of the duration of the trip; and
  • specifies the maximum oxygen flow rate corresponding to the pressure in the cabin of the aircraft under normal operating conditions.

You must bring the physician’s statement with you on the day of travel and report to the check-in desk one hour in advance of scheduled check-in time.

You are responsible for travelling with a sufficient supply of batteries to last the entire journey (including transit and unexpected delays). POCs may not be used when seated at an exit row or bulkhead seat.

You will not be able to use other POCs on board but they will be permitted as carry-on or checked baggage under the following conditions:

  • The POC must be empty and free of pressure.
  • The battery should be removed and packaged separately; or
  • The POC should have a recessed battery terminal and the packaged battery terminals should not contact any metal objects.

Download a sample physician’s statement for the use of POC devices in flight (PDF)

CPAP/PAP Devices

Approved CPAP/PAP devices are permitted on board for use during your flight and do not count towards your carry-on baggage limit. The device must be labelled by the manufacturer to reflect that it has been tested to meet applicable United States Federal Aviation Authority/Department Of Transportation requirements for medical portable electronic devices.

In accordance with UAE General Civil Aviation Authority regulations, if you wish to use a CPAP/PAP device on board your flight you must submit a physician’s statement to anEmirates reservations agent at least 48 hours prior to travel that:

  • states that you have the physical and cognitive ability to see, hear and understand the device’s aural and visual cautions and warnings and are able, without assistance to take the appropriate action in response to those cautions and warnings;
  • states whether or not use of the device is medically necessary for all or a portion of the duration of the trip; and
  • specifies the maximum oxygen flow rate corresponding to the pressure in the cabin of the aircraft under normal operating conditions.

You must bring the physician’s statement with you on the day of travel and report to the check-in desk one hour in advance of scheduled check-in time.

You are responsible for travelling with a sufficient supply of batteries to last the entire journey (including transit and unexpected delays).

You must ensure that the batteries for approved CPAP/PAP machines carried on board the aircraft in carry-on baggage are protected from short circuit and are packaged in a manner that protects them from physical damage. Batteries protected from short circuit include:

  • those designed with recessed battery terminals; or
  • those packaged so that the battery terminals do not contact metal objects (including the battery terminals of other batteries).

If CPAP/PAP devices are carried on board an aircraft as carry-on baggage but are not intended to be used during the flight, the batteries must be removed and packaged separately, unless the device contains at least two effective protective features to prevent accidental operation during transport.

Download a sample physician’s statement for the use of CPAP/PAP devices in flight (PDF)

Passengers requiring escorts

For safety reasons, you would need to travel with an escort or attendant if you:

  • need to travel in a stretcher or incubator, or require medical attention during the flight. The escort must be able to attend to your personal and medical needs.
  • are unable to comprehend or respond properly to safety instructions due to a mental disability.
  • are unable to assist in your own evacuation of the aircraft.
  • have severe hearing and vision impairments and cannot establish some means of communication with airline employees.

Flight attendants are not permitted to assist with feeding or personal hygiene and lavatory functions. They cannot lift or carry you, and they cannot provide medical services such as giving injections. If your medical condition requires others to provide this type of care, you should travel with a ticketed attendant or escort who can see to these needs during the flight.

Service Dogs

In accordance with United Arab Emirates Federal Government regulations, all animals must enter the UAE as manifested cargo. An exception is made for Seeing-Eye Dogs (Guide dogs for the blind) which may travel free of charge in the aircraft cabin on direct Emirates flights from European Union member states, or to or from the USA and Canada.

Emirates requires at least 48 hours advance notice that a passenger with a disability intends to travel with a Guide dog in cabin, in order that  arrangements can be made at Dubai Airport to receive the animal in the passenger terminal.

A Guide dog may be seated with the  passenger in the aircraft cabin if the animal can be accommodated without obstructing the main cabin aisle or emergency exit row.

All other service dogs will be accepted for travel free of charge as manifested cargo, provided that a passenger with a disability provides credible evidence that the animal is a service dog and is in possession of the requisite health and other entry/exit permits necessary for the animal to travel into the UAE/USA or Canada. Further information on animal import/export permit requirements for the United Arab Emirates may be found at http://www.moew.gov.ae/Portal/en/our-services/services-for-individuals.aspx

Complaint Resolution Officials for Customers with Special Needs

Emirates has employees at airports in the USA (New York JFK, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Seattle and Washington, DC), Milan MXP and in Dubai who are trained as complaint resolution officials (CRO) and are available during operating hours. Our CROs are trained to handle special needs requests and are aware of disability regulations for air travel to and from the USA. If you have any questions or concerns regarding our services, please ask to speak to a CRO. Where your complaint is not resolved to your satisfaction with a CRO, you may refer it to the US Department of Transportation via any of the following means:

By telephone: Toll-Free Hotline for Air Travelers with Disabilities
1-800-778-4838 (voice)
1-800-455-9880 (TTY)

By telephone: Aviation Consumer Protection Division
202-366-2220 (voice)
202-366-0511 (TTY)

By mail: Air Consumer Protection Division
C-75, US Dept of Transportation
1200 New Jersey Ave., SE.
West Building, Room W96-432
Washington, DC 20590

The United States Department of Transportation's Final Rule on Non-Discrimination on the Basis of Disability in Air Travel applies to Emirates flights operating to and from the United States of America.

Download a copy of the US DoT 14 CFR Part 382 Final Rule (PDF)

You can also obtain a copy of this regulation in an accessible format on the Aviation Consumer Protection Division’s Web site: http://airconsumer.ost.dot.gov/

These services are not available for codeshare flights not operated by Emirates. Please contact the airline operating your flight to find out more.