Blind Spanish pianist accuses TAP
JN on the mainland report that the blind Spanish pianist Ignasi Cambra has accused the Portuguese flag-carrier TAP of having “completely discriminated against” him on December 30, by preventing him from boarding with his guide dog. The airline regretted what happened, assuring people that it was reviewing procedures.
Through social media, and in a statement quoted by the EFE agency, Ignasi Cambra said that he was “trapped” for a few hours at El Prat – Barcelona airport: “[ TAP ] refused to let me travel with my guide dog”.
The musician added that he booked the flight on Wednesday (29th) at night and tried to send the necessary form to the website to say that he was travelling with a care animal, but the submission “did not work”.
“So I went to the counter, as I always do in a situation like this, and they simply refused to take me with my guide dog, because they say I didn’t inform them more than 48 hours in advance,” he said
In light of this, the pianist left a question: “How am I supposed to notify them 48 hours in advance when I booked the flight the night before? This means that, as a blind person traveling with a guide dog, I am not allowed to book a last-minute flight like all the others?”
The musician stressed that he tried to contact the staff of the Portuguese airline by phone, for an hour, “without success”. Finally, as a “favour”, he explained, he was allowed to board another plane, but he ended up not arriving in Portugal until noon on Friday.
Ignasi Cambra wondered, in an ironic tone, whether he should thank the company for making “an exception to its rule”.
TAP reviewing procedures for guide dogs
Press agency Lusa contacted TAP, which, in a written comment, “regrets what happened and the inconvenience caused by this situation”, and guarantees that “it is reviewing procedures in order to streamline the process in the future”.
However, they stressed that to ensure the best possible service in the transport of animals, and to alert everyone involved, “it is necessary to book the service in advance”.
As it was not possible in this case, “TAP made sure that the passenger and the guide dog were accommodated as quickly as possible, on the immediately following flight, having thus boarded a few hours later than originally planned”, he concluded.
Thanks to PeterA for the link
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