- Jul 5, 2015
I usually agree with your posts, but not here. Realistically, someone in a wheelchair can't be placed in a middle seat on a plane. That scenario becomes a safety issue for the passenger in the window seat during an evacuation. If Basic Economy fares don't allow those passengers with disabilities to purchase those fares (which are the cheapest), it becomes discriminatory.Nope. Not discrimination.
Airlines make reasonable accommodations to assist passengers with disabilities all the time. In this case, they will assign a seat on a Basic Economy fare. An example from a blogger:
"Basic Economy airfare does not include advance seat selection, and those assigned to travelers at check-in are typically middle seats in the back of the airplane. If you have a disability and are traveling with a wheelchair, it is important to call AA's special assistance line before checking-in for your flight.
If you explain to the special assistance team the nature of your disability, chances are they will assign you to a preferred seat without charge. When I called, I explained that, because I use the aisle chair to board, putting me in a middle seat would cause problems for everyone, and would also be a safety concern. Without any hassle, I was assigned to a window seat like I requested."
This line in that blog post is why I keep repeating that smidgy should call the airline. I honestly believe that this is a simple thing to resolve without having to purchase a more expense fare.
"Per the Air Carrier Access Act, airlines must also seat a person with a disability together with their companion if requested."
Better advice might be found (including firsthand accounts) in the disABILITIES! forum: https://www.disboards.com/forums/disabilities.20/