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Fri 26 Dec 2014 06:02 AM

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Dubai airline refuses to allow blind passenger's guide dog in cabin

Visually impaired traveller was forced to leave animal behind in order to fly to the UAE

Dubai airline refuses to allow blind passenger's guide dog in cabin

A Dubai-based airline refused to allow a blind passenger’s guide dog on board in the cabin earlier this month, according to a report by Gulf News.

The visually impaired passenger was travelling from Barcelona to Dubai when she was told that while she could bring the dog on the flight from Spain to the UAE, in accordance with EU regulations. The airline’s policy meant she would not be allowed bring the animal into the cabin for the return journey and was told it could only fly as cargo.

“Two days before flying, I was told that I could bring my dog from Barcelona on board with no problem, but when coming back from Dubai, my dog had to fly as cargo. It makes no sense to allow a service dog to go on board, but not to come back with the blind user. As you must know, a guide dog can never be separated from his or her user,” Daniela Rubio T, a digital media consultant, who flew to the UAE on December 8 for a conference on accessibility, was quoted as saying.

The Dubai airline, which was not named in the report, was not available to comment on the story.

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Natalie 5 years ago

How and why did the airline get away with this? Its descrimination against people with disabilities? The airline needs to be named and shamed.
I would like to know as a consumer. I can then make an informed decision never to fly with them.

Non-Muslim 5 years ago

What an utterly disgraceful action by the unnamed Dubai-based airline (only one of them operating this particular route).
Seeing eye dogs are NEVER EVER separated from the master.
NEVER EVER.
Seeing eye dogs even fly for free on most airlines - in the cabin, NOT as cargo.

MT3 5 years ago

This happens every now and then with other airlines - easyjet (UK) refused boarding of a seeing-eye dog recently; it is often due to misunderstandings and misinterpretation of policies; the airline should publish its stated policy to see if this is an isolated incident or airline policy. Personally I don't see what the problem is; most seeing-eye dogs I have seen would easily fit into the overhead lockers on any but the smallest of planes. There is no need for them to travel as cargo.

Matt 5 years ago

Overhead lockers? You need help..

MT3 5 years ago

If you can use the overhead lockers for babies why not dogs??? I'm fed up with this constant discrimination against our four-legged friends by air-lines. (Although unbelievably some air-lines even stop you using them for your children now - soon it will be impossible to travel.)