MONTRÉAL, April 2, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - A group of children accompanied by their families experienced a special day at Montréal–Trudeau airport today during the fifth edition of the Premium Kids program, which organizes airport-process familiarization days for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) or functional limitations.
Nearly a hundred children accompanied by family members had an opportunity to try out a typical traveller's journey through an airport, from arrival at the terminal parking lot, right up until the aircraft boarding and passenger-safety announcement. This context-setting exercise helps reduce their anxiety about air travel.
"Today's activity is important for the families, but also for the entire airport community," said Philippe Rainville, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aéroports de Montréal. "It enables us to better identify the needs and expectations of the families, and improve our services to airport users accordingly."
For his part, Jean-François Lemay, President of Air Transat, said: "Preparing children for the experience of flying is essential for a successful family trip. This step is all the more important for parents of children with an ASD. This is why we are pleased to be the official partner airline of the Premium Kids program." Mr. Lemay added: "Our priority is to provide our passengers with an exceptional, pleasant and safe experience, no matter their limitations. Air Transat provides an extensive range of services to families travelling aboard its flights and our participation in Premium Kids is in keeping with this approach."
This event is organized by Aéroports de Montréal (ADM) jointly with the following partners: Air Transat, Autisme Montréal, the Giant Steps organization, Special Olympics Québec, Transport Canada, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA), Securitas, HMSHost, and Montréal Airport Marriott Hotel.
ADM is Canada's first airport authority to introduce such a program, which is inspired by a similar initiative, "Wings for Autism," created in 2011 by the Charles River Center in collaboration with the Massachusetts Port Authority (Logan International Airport, Boston).
About Aéroports de Montréal
Aéroports de Montréal is the local airport authority that has been responsible for the management, operation and development of Montréal–Trudeau and Montréal–Mirabel international airports since 1992. The Corporation employs 625 people at both airports and at head office.
About Air Transat
Air Transat is Canada's number one holiday travel airline in the Canadian and transatlantic markets. It also offers domestic and feeder flights out of five Canadian airports. Every year, it carries some three million passengers to approximately 60 destinations in 26 countries. Based in Montreal, the company employs more than 2,500 people and operates a fleet of Boeing narrow-body and Airbus wide-body jets. In 2016, Air Transat was named Best North American Leisure Airline for the fifth consecutive year by Skytrax. In recent years, the carrier has earned multiple distinctions for its efforts to reduce its environmental footprint. Since 2011, it has consistently been ranked number one in North America for energy efficiency, and in the Top 20 worldwide, by the Atmosfair Airline Index. Air Transat is a business unit of Transat A.T. Inc., a leading integrated international tourism company active in air transportation, accommodation, travel packaging and distribution. Transat was awarded Travelife Partner status in 2016 in recognition of its commitment to sustainable development. The vacation travel companion par excellence, Transat celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2017.
SOURCE Aéroports de Montréal
For further information: Aéroports de Montréal: Anne Marcotte, Director, Communications and Social responsability, 514 394-7304; Transat A.T. inc.: Odette Trottier, Director, Communications and Corporate Affairs, [email protected], 514 908-8891