Fantastic news! Today I received an email from Virgin Australia announcing a new initiative which may make travel achievable for people who are unable to fly independently. From today, Virgin Australia is implementing a Disability Assistant Concession fare. The fare offers a 50% discount (applied to the base fare) for an assistant’s airfare. The fare has been made available in recognition of the many travellers using the airline who require special assistance when travelling.
The fare is designed to facilitate the travel of guests who are required by Virgin Australia to travel with an assistant under the airline’s Independent Travel Criteria. Flight crews are obviously there to keep us comfortable and safe but there is a limit to the services they can provide, therefore the airline recognises the need for some travellers to fly with the assistance of a family member or support worker. Tasks like administering medication, assisting with bathroom visits and in the case of an emergency being able to apply an oxygen mask are not the responsibility of a flight crew.
Before getting the credit card out ready to book your flight to your dream destination, you need to know there is eligibility criteria. Virgin Australia Guest Contact Centre agents will use the Independent Travel Criteria to assess if a guest is required to travel with an assistant. You can read the Independent Travel Criteria here.
The Disability Assistant Concession fare is a 50% discount which is applied to the base fare of all fare types including business class. Taxes, fees and GST cannot be discounted. The Guest Contact Centre will process the discount for you. This discount will be applied to all forms of payment in the Virgin Australia system including Velocity Points used to pay for Any Seats (you can read about Any Seats here.)
The discount applies to all Virgin Australia domestic travel.
MORE GOOD NEWS
If you are thinking, “Bummer, I’ve already booked my flights and missed the discount!”, don’t worry, Virgin Australia says, “The Disability Assistant Concession fare will be applied retrospectively for guests travelling after 6 April who require an assistant under the Independent Travel Criteria and held firm bookings made before 5 April 2018.”
We know many of you love flying with Virgin Australia and I think this is another sign the airline is focused on improving the travel experience of all their guests.
Virgin Australia has extensive information on their website about the accessible services they offer. You can check that here.
You can read our tips on booking a holiday including air travel, Special Assistance at the airport, the Eagle Passenger Lifter and more here.
If you’ve checked the eligibility criteria and are ready to book, contact the Virgin Australia Guest Contact Centre here.
As a family who loves to travel, with significant costs associated with doing so, we welcome this assistance.