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Q208:  Recently had multi-leg trip and the walks between gates difficult enough (pride does not yet allow me to be chaired, or courtesy wagon carried!), and the interminable wait at the gates, very tiring! Is there any way the VA might request that US carriers recognize a veteran's disabled status (his/her) VA ID card as proof, and allow them to board in one of the earlier groups?  

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A1:  Most of the airlines do when they ask for 1st class anyone with small children or with disabilities may board now and that's before anyone else.  (LS)  12/2/18


A2:  Yes I agree with you 100%.  (RW)  12/2/18


A3:  You can request special assistance from the airline. They will provide Wheel chair, if needed and priority boarding for your flight. It will be even easier if you have your handicap placard but, not required.  (MA)  12/2/18


A4:   I use the chair service because if I have to go to different terminals there's no way I can walk it.  And when I have time between flights, I go up to the ticket counter and ask the gate agent for an early seating.  And they always put me on first. Some airlines ask if you're a veteran you can board early also!  (BN)  12/2/18












A5:  Yes. I've been able to board airplanes with the very first group for a Long time.  Hawaiian and American Airlines.  (AM)  12/2/18


A6:  Just ask the gate agent if you could pre-board. Don't have t tell them hey unless they ask. They always say yes to me.  (LK)  12/2/18


A7:  My previous answer disappeared before I was finished. Ask for wheelchair assistance if you need it . You don?t need to prove your disability and airlines are great about accommodating. You will get straight through without long lines and standing. I have same issues as you and don?t need wheelchair routinely but do for long trips due to mobility issues secondary to back problems. I do carry a lot of $5.00 bills for tips.  (SD)  12/2/18


A8:   I have a feeling that will only happen if the airlines can figure how to charge extra for it!  (RH)  12/2/18


A9:  All you have to do is when checking in or at the boarding desk let them know you need to priority board. Because you need extra time. They should allow you on in the first group. I don't like using a wheelchair either but I need time to get on the plane and that is what I do. I have never had an issue.  (AL)  12/2/18


A10:  You are not required to show proof or any documents in order to board the aircraft except your boarding pass. In fact, It is illegal for anyone to ask what if any medical condition you have that requires you to pre board. When they call for anybody who needs extra time or assistance during the pre-boarding phase, that is when you should be going down to board.  (EH)  12/2/18


A11:   I feel the same way and often just suck it up. But there have been times when I just couldn't do it and I inquired at the departure desk where I told them I was a 90% disabled vet (9 spinal/cervical fusions) and they allowed me to board with the first group without even asking for documentation. However, I dont know if it is official carrier policy.  (WB)  12/2/18


A12:   I fly frequently on Southwest and always motivate with a cane as I have trouble with my leg/hips when tired. When checking in I ask for pre-board and have never been refused.  (BC)  12/2/18













A13:  Yes, just go up to the gate, show your ID (VA if possible) and just telex you have a disability and would like to board with the mothers and others needing assistance. I've done that with Delta, American, United. Southwest depends on the person at the gate...good luck.  (DE)  12/2/18


A14:   I just tell the ticketing agent and they let me prebaord early very time.  (RH)  12/2/18


A15:   Some US Carrier, Allegiant does; however I do not think that is it's appropriate to receive courtesy above other disable civilians as well. That is not the veteran ways. I am a 100% Disabled vet too.  (MF)  12/2/18


A16:  Yes, they should be first in line, and the Care Giver.  (RS)  12/2/18


A17:  You may ask the travel agency if they can make arrangements. If not, you may have to swallow your pride and ask for a wheel chair and attendant to get you around and not have to stand in line.  (RC)  12/2/18


A18:  As a retired major airline pilot and Vietnam/Gulf war VET now disabled, PLEASE use the airlines EMBEDDED PROCEDURE for selecting ASSISTANCE when U make your reservation. THEY APPRECIATE THAT - as it allows them to have the resources they need to move your trip ON TIME.   U will be treated with dignity and respect AND U LIKE ME WILL BE GLAD U SELECTED THEIR OFFER of ASSISTANCE. I know this is NOT what U requested BUT IT IS A INDUSTRY WIDE ADA Certified Best Practice.  (DD)  12/2/18


A19:  All airlines allow early boarding to anyone who has a medical disability.  With my cane and without it I have boarded early when they announce. My limp is enough to pass.  Pride gets no nowhere.   (RK)  12/2/18


A20:   I am 100% SC and as a result have a military ID - several US airlines have allowed me to board with early groups. Many time they ask for military at the gate so the ID helps never tried my VA card. The ID will also get you into the USO!!!  (PA)  12/2/18


A21:  Just need to notify carrier prior to boarding.  (FR)  12/2/18


A22:  The times when I have flown Southwest I have asked for first boarding due to my disability. In addition, SW allows my wife to also early board with me as standard courtesy.  (SH)  12/2/18


A23:  Contact this number before your flight. TSA Cares
(855) 787-2227.  (SR)  12/3/18


A24:  Tot only should it be aloud, it should already be in place as a policy.  Also it can be crazy that an active duty person is aloud to board early but a vet (retired or disabled vet) has to wait longer which can be degrading.  It seems to me if you are not on active duty you no longer matter.  (RS)  12/3/18


A25:  When I fly on Southwest Airlines, I go up to the gate and let them know that I am Disabled, and they will give me a Pre Board pass. you might go up the the people at the gate and ask if they Will Pre Board you.   (AFL)  12/4/18


A26:  While waiting in line at American Airlines Honolulu two years ago I was leaning heavily on the cane and my wife asked the boarding person if I could board a little earlier and they allowed her to accompany me and tried their best to seat me in a wheelchair which I declined. I don't know if this is A-A airlines policy or not but they were kind and attentive on that exhausting day.  (JH)  3/11/19