Home Business & Finance Emirates Awarded Certified Autism Center™ Designation for all Check In Facilities in Dubai

Emirates Awarded Certified Autism Center™ Designation for all Check In Facilities in Dubai

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Furthering Dubai’s commitment to accessible travel and in time for World Autism Awareness Day on 2 April; Emirates has achieved a Certified Autism Center™ Designation for all of its Dubai Check In facilities – Emirates City Check-in & Travel Store in DIFC, Emirates Cruise Check In – Port Rashid, Emirates Cruise Check In – Dubai Harbour and Emirates City Check-In Ajman, in addition to the Emirates’ dedicated hub in Terminal 3 at Dubai International Airport (DXB).

The certification, awarded by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) ensures that all Emirates facilities in Dubai have taken a significant step towards making travel more inclusive and accessible to neurodiverse customers, meeting criteria required for a comfortable and supported travel experience.

As part of the designation, Emirates employees at the various facilities underwent specialized training on autism and sensory awareness, to equip them with the understanding and skills to address needs of autistic travellers or those with sensory sensitivities, along with their families. Comprehensive facilities audits were conducted across the locations, measuring all sensory inputs in public areas such as sound levels, lighting, and potential sights and smells to develop sensory guides, empowering travellers to make informed decisions and choose the environment that best suits their needs and preferences.

This achievement builds on the recent recognition of Dubai International Airport as the first international airport to earn the designation from IBCCES and aligns with the Department of Economy and Tourism’s (DET) vision of becoming the first Certified Autism Destination™ (CAD) in the Middle East.

Emirates’ City Check-Ins across Dubai offer a seamless and stress-free pre-airport experience in convenient and easily accessible locations, where Emirates customers can check in for flights up to 24 hours in advance, drop off luggage between four and 24 hours before departure, and choose between agent-assisted check-ins, robot-assisted check-ins, or self-service kiosks, allowing a more relaxed travel experience. 

Mohammed H. Mattar – Emirates DSVP Airport Services commented:

“As a global airline, Emirates is committed to providing a seamless travel experience for everyone. We recognize the challenges customers with autism and sensory sensitivities face in airport environments. That’s why we’ve proactively partnered with Dubai’s DET and IBCCES to certify all our city check-in locations across the UAE. This initiative is a crucial step forward in our ongoing mission to make travel inclusive and accessible for all.” 

Myron Pincomb, Chairman of the Board for IBCCES remarked:

“Emirates is known worldwide for its exceptional guest service. Checking in for a flight is one of the most stressful segments of the whole travel experience. With the completion of the facilities, audit and the addition of the new sensory guides, the check-in procedure at the Check-in facilities will be more accommodating for people of determination, and especially those with sensory challenges.”

By working together – Emirates, Department of Economy and Tourism and Dubai Airports in collaboration with the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs, Dubai Police and Dubai Customs, are making travel more inclusive and accessible for all, reflecting Dubai’s commitment to becoming a leading destination for travellers with diverse needs.

IBCCES also created AutismTravel.com, a free online resource for families that lists certified destinations and connects families to other resources and each other. Each destination listed on the site has met the CAC requirements.

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